Stories & Solutions

Circular Economy | Environment Mobility Society | Infrastructure

Lahti offers a business-friendly and resource-wise environment where new innovations and ideas can fly free. Be inspired by the smart solutions that drive green growth.

Circular Economy


Fazer Mills In its production process, Fazer Mills uses district heating, gas and steam supplied by Lahti Energy. The district heating is used to heat the buildings, and is produced primarily through the cogeneration of heat and electricity at Kymijärvi power plant. Gas is used in the production processes...
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Kuusakoski’s research and development centre in Lahti studies and tests new ways of sorting materials in order to identify new material flows and to recover precious metals from waste materials more efficiently. Ekopark Lahti, owned by Kuusakoski, is a modern, industrial-scale recycling plant that produces fuel for Lahti Energy’s gasification...
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Lahti has developed innovative solutions to recycle grain-based residues locally. Local fermentable waste and process residues from breweries and bakeries, as well as other sorted biowastes, are turned into bioethanol and energy. ST1’s energy-efficient Etanolix® plant offers a clean and easy solution for the recycling of grain-based residues and the...
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The Finnish Motorcycle Museum combines a range of local environmentally friendly housing technologies and solutions. The Museum has a quick-charge post for electric cars, ground source heat pumps produced by Oilon, and Oilon solar panels to heat the Museum year round. Addition solutions include those for ventilation, cooling and...
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Lahti is home to pioneering combined composting and biogas production. Finland’s largest biogas production and refining plant, owned by LABIO Oy, is situated at Kujala Waste Treatment Centre,  producing environmentally friendly biogas for traffic use. Every year 60,000–120,000 tonnes of household and industrial biowaste and sewage sludge is turned into raw gas. Finnish...
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Situated at the Kujala Waste Treatment Centre, Tarpaper Recycling Finland Oy has solved a roofing waste handling problem, making use of roofing previously deposited in landfills or combusted. Tarpaper’s roofing felt processing facility handles bitumen roofing shingle and processes it into granulate. The granulate is used as a raw material and environmentally...
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Several companies working among the recycling and material recovery benefit from each other´s expertise. Ones´ residues are raw materials for another. Read more

Locally collected and delivered energy-containing waste and biomasses are used for intelligent energy production Read more


Environment


Noise isolation and abatement is important in growing urban environments. Lahti has multiple quiet areas which are also easily accessible from the city centre. Lahti first mapped the quiet areas in 2010, and the coverage is monitored every four years as part of the master plan process. Air-quality monitoring...
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Lahti’s stormwater strategies aim at reducing the negative impacts caused by stormwater discharges. Centralised storm water sewer systems reduce environmental nutrient loads efficiently. Lahti’s Storm Water Management Plan aims to improve cooperation and knowledge of storm water issues and develop new best practices for storm water management. The plan...
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Lake Vesijärvi has become world-famous for its fresh water restoration project. After urban development really took of here in the 50s, the lake rapidly became severely eutrophic due to household and industrial wastewater being fed into it. Since the 70s, Vesijärvi’s condition has improved significantly and Lahti has gained robust...
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Lahti Aqua Oy is a City-owned water company, providing drinking water and wastewater services. It carefully monitors the quality of drinking water and is piloting solutions to generate energy from wastewater treatment. Lahti has a constantly widened, separate sewage system and 73 km of wastewater pipes. Of the pipes used, 99%...
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Mass stabilisation is an environmentally-friendly ground improvement method for soft or contaminated soils, which by adding binders makes areas with low quality soils technically and environmentally fit for construction. Mass stabilisation allows for infrastructure projects to be carried out in wet areas and in areas with soft soils at...
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Lahti is home to several top innovation research facilities dedicated to engineering the city of the future. Energon is a clean energy research centre on an international scale. It offers an excellent setting for comprehensive research into renewable energy and energy efficiency, as well as for piloting new technologies. One...
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Lahti’s water bodies are now in significantly better condition than they were few decades ago, thanks to active water protection and restoration projects. Of all the large cities in Finland, Lahti is the only one located on a large groundwater area, making it vital to be active in protecting...
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Mobility


The City of Lahti has carried out a pilot of the Smart Mobility Plan for its employees. The pilot included public transport support, bike servicing campaigns, and the procurement of three electric bikes for the workplace, in addition to standard bikes. The pilot has led to a follow-up proposal...
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The development of sustainable mobility and transportation draws increased attention in the development of a smart city. Mobility and transportation development is being carried out with lightweight electric buses and integrated advanced driving control systems. Several free-of-charge, quick-charge posts support the usage of electric and hybrid cars. Electric cars...
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The goals of the CitiCAP (citizens’ cap and trade co-created) project are to reduce emissions from transport, collect and make available digital data on mobility and transportation, and develop new transport services for residents. The CitiCAP project will experiment with a personal carbon trading scheme for movement around the...
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A major change in public transportation was implemented in 2014, when almost the whole fleet was renewed and switched to a network-based model. Nowadays, 87% of the City’s buses are low emission buses and belong to the cleanest EURO6 category. Before the reform, the public transportation system was operated by private...
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Lahti-based Linkker has produced Finland’s first series-produced, fast-charging electric buses. Linkker buses are optimised for intensive inner city operation. Helsinki Region Transport has chosen Linkker to deliver this emission-free electric bus system for two bus lines. Field tests have been carried out in Moscow and Berlin on inner city...
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Lahti has implemented new solutions to make cycling an easier option. Cycling campaigns, a public bicycle borrowing system and measures to replace the current bus fleet with electric buses all support the creation of light traffic oriented city. In the near future Lahti aims to double the amount of cycling in...
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A vibrant area, good connections and services, and a central location have created a large logistics centre in the Lahti region. Congestion-free connections and a versatile supply of properties and business areas offers an excellent setting for logistics companies. The companies in the area include transport and forwarding experts,...
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A major reform was conducted in 2014, when public transportation was switched to a network-based model. Lahti Region Transport (LSL) is exploiting open data opportunities by offering free journey planner applications encompassed within Google’s Transit Trip Planner application. Free service data means time saved travelling and dynamic journey planning. In addition to this, a nationwide journey planner was created through the Digitransit project. This too encompasses the routes and timetables for the Lahti region. To promote open data in travelling, you can use the travelling companion service kyydit.fi or offer to share a ride with other travellers. Lahti is among several cities in Finland using this service. A shift towards open data methods benefits owners of electric cars, as the e-charge post locations are easy to track using an application.


Society


When countries’ expenditure on R&D is viewed as a percentage of GDP, Finland comes in fourth on the list, and Päijät-Häme is among the most innovative regions in Finland. Lahti’s innovation system is based on market-led thinking, with user-driven challenges acting as triggers of innovation. The characteristics of Lahti’s...
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The ResQ service is an application used to issue notifications of where leftover lunch food is available, allowing residents to ‘rescue’ food to stop it being wasted, at just half of the food’s normal price. It effectively reduces food waste from restaurants. This start-up  is already operating in several European...
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Lahti has been holding an Environment Week for 20 years and the event will be held again this year by the municipalities of the Lahti region in September. During the Environment Week, different parties arrange environmentally-themed events, such as nature trips, recycling events, lectures or perhaps voluntary cleaning work. Without...
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Environmental counselling provides help online or at info points for environment-related issues. An environmental counsellor is available for association, housing company or club events, for example, to provide waste and environmental counselling free of charge. Information about voluntary environmental work or environmental education is also provided. Residents are also encouraged to compare...
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Lahti is home to active resident panels, through which residents can develop their environment and services. On the City’s technical front, it has a resident panel to monitor and evaluate the quality of contractors’ work.  Lahti Design Center is the home base for Lahen D – a product development panel of...
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Early years care in Finland is designed and publicly funded to ensure high uptake: every child has a legal right to high-quality pre-school care. The main aim of early years education is not explicitly ‘education’ in the formal sense, but the promotion of the health and wellbeing of every...
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The Continuous Master Plan Process creates an overall picture of how the city functions as a whole, and is a comprehensive land-use plan. The Master Plan is based on the city strategy, which highlights resident participation in developing services and living environments. The target year for the strategy is...
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Infrastructure


The objective of this project is to create a lighting infrastructure service platform, which will then provide opportunities for intelligently controlled lighting, as well as new innovations and user-focused services for urban spaces. The project will pilot smart lighting solutions in six Finnish cities in different kinds of urban environments....
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Onnelanpolku is the first large sheltered housing project with an energy solution based on diverse use of renewable energy, high levels of energy efficiency, and effective utilisation of free and surplus energy. Onnelanpolku provides lifespan housing in a dynamic operating environment.  Onnelanpolku is the first passive apartment building in Finland to be certified...
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Geothermal and solar energy are used to provide heating in two five-storey apartment buildings completed in spring 2011 on Lanssikatu, near Lahti city centre. There is still relatively little experience of constructing low-energy buildings of this type and, for the moment, there are few new construction apartment buildings using...
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The Asko Area has been developed to house a collection of cultural, well-being and business services, as its flexible building solutions offer premises for various purposes. Located in the heart of Lahti, the area possesses significant potential for development and growth. Its planning has been guided by the strategic...
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Opened in 2017, the Green Leaf pre-school premises at Kalliola and Heinsuo, situated in Hollola, were built using a lifecycle model and act as pilot environments for local sustainable housing solutions. Since the very beginning, the municipality of Hollola was keen for Kalliola School to have a heating system based on renewable energy.  The...
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Lahti Energy is currently planning district cooling for new residential areas, the first of which will be the Ranta-Kartano residential area being constructed in the city centre. Thanks to various reports and research studies, the use of groundwater in cooling, which began a couple of years ago, has been shown to be a workable option. Since 2000, Lahti’s Sibelius Hall as been the only property connected to Lahti’s district cooling network. The city’s location on the Salpausselkä ridge, on top of significant ground water reserves, is now making district heating a profitable business. With groundwater, the centrally generated cold carbon dioxide emissions are significantly smaller than those of other condensation systems, and the energy rating of properties using district cooling is also better.

Looking at a 40-year period, the largest city development investments are now being implemented to support the region’s green growth, infrastructure, mobility, and tourism and leisure. Massive investment plans for the period 2017–2019 in renewables and energy-efficiency are worth at least MEUR 290. By 2020 at least one third of public...
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