Nature is our asset
Inna-Pirjetta Lahti is a keen cyclist, cycling all year round and everywhere, whenever possible.
”I cycle because I can. You can get almost anywhere in Helsinki city centre within 15 minutes on a bike. I am much more likely to be late if I’ve had to leave my bike at home,” Inna-Pirjetta says.
In addition to cycling, the founder of Innastus Ltd likes to experience Nature, skiing and sailing, and starts every morning with a swim at her local beach.
”I feel privileged living in Helsinki, the greatest city in the world. We are always close to Nature – we have the woods, parks and the sea. I can see foxes in our yard in Lauttasaari on most days. With the number of rabbits living in the city, we eat local food.”
15 minutes to the wilderness
Inna-Pirjetta is the creator of the Nordic Bloggers Experience project, which brings international bloggers to Finland during the Nordic Travel Fair. Last month, 66 bloggers from 21 countries visited Finland. They were here for a few days and the highlight of their stay was an ‘Outdoor afternoon’ at Haltia the Finnish Nature Centre.
”We were super lucky: the temperature was -25 Celsius, and they were treated to a real extreme experience in Finnish Nature. They were amazed at finding the wilderness just 15 minutes from the Expo and Convention Centre,” Inna-Pirjetta says.
Inna-Pirjetta believes that Nature could be an asset in promoting tourism in Helsinki, as it is what sets us apart from other cities. Other key assets are design, food and urban events, such as the Flow Festival.
”They all complement each other. Nature could be the umbrella, the theme above everything. Nature in Helsinki still has a lot of opportunities on offer.”
Construction must take Nature into account
Inna-Pirjetta has some reservations about City planning.
”We need more housing, obviously, but construction should not be artificial. For instance, the construction plans along the shores of Lauttasaari seem like that. Construction should not take place at the expense of Nature and the environment. The Nature values that many residents hold high should not be destroyed by filling the shores with high-rise buildings.”
She gives praise to the City for the development of the network of cycle paths.
”Cycle paths have been radically improved in the last few years. I love the new Baana Cycle corrridor and ride on it every day. I was really surprised once, when I rode my bike from Lauttasaari to Vantaankoski. I only had to cross two roads – that was fantastic.”
Text and picture: Heta Ängeslevä
Tom Selänniemi nominated Inna-Pirjetta Lahti as a future maker of Helsinki.