Espoonlahti to receive a dream-come-true sports park

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2020-02-03 10:54

Espoonlahti sports park is being developed into an even more versatile centre of sports, wellbeing and leisure activities. The Urban Planning Department has compiled a set of development principles and objectives for the sports park, based on the residents’ wishes. The City Planning Committee will review the report at its meeting on 5 February. 

‘Remodelling this park provides a fantastic opportunity to make it an even better place for the area’s residents to do sports. The key here is to work together and seize the opportunities,’ says Project Manager Kimmo Leivo

Pyöräilijöitä ja kävelijöitä keskusaukiolla urheilupuistossa. Näkymäkuva.
A central square in the Pallopuisto park joins the different areas together. Illustration.

A park of ample possibilities for various sports 

The planning area is located south of Espoonlahdentie and extends from the park to the seashore. The park can be divided into three areas of varying types: the Pallopuisto park in the north will focus on competitive and club sports, in particular. 

Soukanpohja will become an area for relaxing and recreational exercise and house an allotment site, riding centre and summer theatre. 

Finally, Soukanranta will be a centre for boating, water sports and beach life. It has a marina and a pier for the archipelago boat, and these will remain. The popular Waterfront Walkway (Rantaraitti) also runs through this area. The report also proposes a pontoon bridge to be built across Soukanlahti, as it would complement the current recreational routes. 

The park can be accessed on foot or by bicycle, and must also have room for city bikes. Furthermore, the signposting in the nature reserve will be improved. The signposted routes will serve recreational users, skiers, wildlife lovers and riders. 

Espoo to become Finland’s most physically active city 

Espoo’s long-term goal is to become the most physically active city in the country. The aim is for the sports park to be a centre of competitive swimming and junior football in the future. 
 
In addition to this, the even longer term goals include turning the ice skating halls into a building with facilities for both ice sports and other forms of exercise. This would also free up space for a football training field. Another vision is to build a marine swimming pool in Soukanranta. The park’s development work will progress in stages. 
 
‘Over the next few years, the swimming pool will be renovated and expanded, and a parking facility will be built. The construction of the artificial ice track is already underway,’ says Regional Architect Mervi Hokkanen

Nature experiences for urban people  

The sports park will also have an area for horseback riders, allowing the residents to go and see horses if they want. The historical site of Soukanpohja Manor might be developed through traditional cultivation and artisan work and could also house a petting zoo. 

‘The park is full of life and activities, and it also has cosy areas for relaxing and enjoying nature,’ said the residents and park users in a vision workshop in spring 2019. The vision created in the workshop provides the guidelines for planning the sports park. The user vision 
 
The park’s renewal project is being carried out according to the Espoo Moves 2030 vision. The Urban Planning Department is developing the area in cooperation with the City of Espoo’s Sports and Exercise Services, Education and Cultural Services and Technical and Environment Services. 

More information, in finnish:

The City Planning Committee agenda, 5 February 2020
Report on the Espoonlahti sports park, its development principles and a comprehensive review

Espoonlahti sports park