Where is the D of Lahti?
Design is the theme of WDC 2012 year. Design, still considered mainly as formation of concreate (beautiful and expensive) products, sounds like being far away from reality of Lahti. Normal working day does not include design - or does it?
Everyday can be a design experience. Being part of WDC2012 Helsinki year Lahti brings the design to the very core of city planning. Projects of Lahti:
- Meidän Aleksi (Our Aleksi=Aleksanterinkatu)
- Urbaani Ratas (Wheel)
Meidän Aleksi project was launched in Art Saturday on 3.9.2011. Meidän Aleksi is a project for planning the market place and Aleksanterinkatu. The aim is to have a user-centered approach. In addition the city of Lahti, the project has other participants: Lappeenranta University of Technology’s Lahti School of Innovation, Institute of Design, Aalto University and Lahti Science and Business Park. The first phase of the planning lasts until the spring of 2012 and during that time there will be several opportunities for ideation and participation. The whole project (construction work included) should be ready during 2015. The biggest changes are building the underground parking lot under the market place and changing the Aleksanterinkatu that passes by the market place to a pedestrian street. With these larger changes it is possible to change the environment also in other ways and this is where the citizens and the panel can affect.
Urbaani Ratas was kicked off on 22.9.2011. Ratas brings together citizens, designers, city planners and researchers to develop and improve the bicycle plans of Lahti. Lahti is a good city for bicycling. From all travels done within the city, 14% are made by bike (year 2010). We can always improve though! Lahti aims to double the count of travels done by bike by the year 2017. We need design and creativity to take the growing amount of bicycles into consideration in infrastructure planning procedures.
Where is the D of Lahti? It's in all of us.. come and enjoy!