Press release 15 October 2015
Friends of Malmi Airport
For immediate release
An application to protect Malmi Airport as a functional whole, in accordance to the Act on the Protection of Built Heritage, has been filed with the Uusimaa Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment on 12 October 2015. The record number of the application is UUDELY/6622/2015.
The area proposed for protection is the same that has been listed by the National Board of Antiquities as a built cultural environment of national significance (RKY 2009). According to the Ministry of the Environment, the National Board of Antiquities and the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities, RKY 2009 is to be used as the starting point of land use planning and must be taken into account on all levels of planning. The Act on the Protection of Built Heritage (4.6.2010/498) makes it possible to protect the airport as a functional whole so that aviation and business activities can continue and develop further at Malmi.
Numerous domestic and international recommendations for the protection of Malmi Airport have been made. Now the valuable whole is proposed for protection according to law. In the plans of City of Helsinki, the area is coveted for housing construction.
“No one can deny the culturo-historical and natural values of the Airport. It is best that this functional whole is protected. As there are great public and economical interests and pressure aimed at the use and planning of the airport area, we have filed for the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment to impose a prohibition of endangerment at Malmi Airport, preventing any measures that would endanger the culturo-historical significance of the site”, says Chairman of Friends of Malmi Airport, Mr. Timo Hyvönen.
A prohibition of endangerment is based on the Act on the Protection of Built Heritage (2 chapter, 6 §).
Protection will ensure that the second-busiest airport in Finland remains a strong part of Helsinki’s permanent identity. Even on international scale, this living airport is a uniquely authentic monument of modernism, and as a functional whole it also has significant environmental values as the last open scenery in northeastern Helsinki.
“The meaning of Malmi Airport to the citizens and the State of Finland is much more significant than the short-term economic gain of one city. The biggest municipal citizens’ initiave to date has already proposed to Helsinki City Council the continuation of aviation activities, but we want to point out and ensure its value also on national scale”, says Mr. Hyvönen. “With protection we want to ensure that one of the most significant living, functioning heritage sites in the history of our young nation is preserved for posterity. Those who will see the end result of City of Helsinki’s present planning decisions have not even been born yet”.
The RKY 2009 advisory memorandum of the Ministry of the Environment, the National Board of Antiquities and the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities states: “Built cultural environments of national significance must form the basis of land use planning — It is important that no such changes or building occur on these areas that would be in fundamental conflict with their values as cultural environments — In the process of making or revising regional plans, RKY 2009 must be the starting point of planning. In regional planning it is appropriate to indicate the area limits of built cultural environments exactly as they are listed.”
The area proposed for protection fulfills the prerequisites of the Act on the Protection of Built Heritage, 2 chapter, 8 §. In the planning process of City of Helsinki, the RKY 2009 point of view has been passed by. The planning work must be suspended as long as the matter is considered. A prohibition of endangerment will ensure that the value of the airport is not weakened or destroyed while the protection matter is pending.
Friends of Malmi Airport
Chairman Timo Hyvönen
tel. +358 50 3748371
Member of the Board Sari Klinga
tel. +358 40 8212672
Application to protect Malmi Airport with its buildings and whole area according to the Act on the Protection of Built Heritage 4.67.2010/498, with appendices (UUDELY/6622/2015, in Finnish)
Images – free for publication in this context
Photos: Raine Haikarainen