Environmental Design Team
We, the Environmental Design Team of the City of Espoo, have now been working for two months. A delightful number of residents and communities have contacted us, eager to improve their immediate surroundings. Several projects have already begun and we warmly welcome more!
The primary purpose of the Environmental Design Team is to help and support residents to carry out their own projects. Many people have also contacted us to suggest larger-scale improvements to infrastructure or requested the installation of new benches, for example. In such cases, the best way to get heard is to use the city’s feedback service.
Some residents may not know how to use the feedback service, and many may not be aware of all the things they can use it for. In this blogpost, we share instructions on how to use the feedback service and how to submit complaints on town plans. To conclude, we discuss the ongoing Espoo of All Times survey.
Feedback service and comments on town planning
The feedback service
The service is divided into several thematic sections, through which you can provide feedback on the services that work in that area. The sections for example include sports, streets and traffic, and the Iso Omena Service Centre. The front page also includes a tab for searching and browsing feedback that has been marked as public.
Begin by selecting a section. On the next page you will be asked to select a subject for your feedback. Subjects vary from theme to theme. For example, the “parks, nature and environment” section contains the subjects “planning, construction and maintenance” and “environmental protection and conservation”. When you select one of the options, the webpage will display an explanation of the matters included in this subject. For example, “planning, construction and maintenance” includes green areas, playgrounds, dog parks, forests and littering.
After selecting the subject, move on to select the nature of your feedback – is it for example a compliment, a question or a proposal? We warmly recommend that you also give feedback on matters that are well, such as beautiful flowerbeds or a city bike station placed in an excellent location.
After writing your feedback message, you can also attach for example photographs of the location in question. If you are giving feedback concerning a physical location, it is a good idea to mark it on the map. Finally, you are asked for your contact information. You can choose whether you want your feedback to be public or not. If several people have given feedback on the same matter, a “frequently given feedback” box will be visible in the upper right corner of the page. We recommend you take a look at it to see if other people have already commented on the matter on your mind. The final step is to select whether you wish that the city will respond to your feedback by email or by phone.
Although the feedback service also includes a section called “zoning, construction and housing”, comments on ongoing town planning projects must be sent to City of Espoo Registry Office (P.O. Box 1, 02070 City of Espoo, or email@example.com) to have them considered in the planning process.
Information about ongoing town planning projects is available in Finnish.
Information about pending master plans
Planning projects marked with “Vaikuta nyt” (“Have your say”) are at a stage in which the parties concerned may submit complaints on the plans. You can also use this as a search criterion.
Feedback service on your mobile device
The feedback service is also available as a mobile application. You can find the application in the application store on your smartphone. Simply search for Trimble Feedback. Further information and an installation link.
The application finds the feedback channels that are available in your location. If you are in Espoo, the city’s feedback service should be automatically visible. The application uses the global positioning system (GPS) on your phone to determine your location. Sending photos is easy through the mobile application, making is possible to send spontaneous feedback on something you see. If you for example notice a broken rubbish bin on your evening walk on the Waterfront Walkway, you do not need to figure out your exact location. If you use the mobile application, you do not need to select a suitable section for your feedback.
Espoo of All Times survey
The City of Espoo is collecting feedback and experience-based knowledge using a variety of thematic surveys. The responses will for example support the planning of operational programmes and other work of public officials. The Espoo of All Times survey is currently open.
The survey will remain open throughout the summer, until 9 September. The purpose of the map-based survey is to gather information about and memories related to buildings, places and landscapes that are important to Espoo residents. In addition to marking locations on the map, you can also send photos of the places that mean the most to you. Send them to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org. The City of Espoo will use these materials primarily during the planning of its cultural environment programme, but some of the material will be published as open data for anyone to use. However, all survey responses will be processed anonymously.
We hope that the residents of Espoo will learn to use these feedback channels even better than before. The Environmental Design Team will gladly give advice on how to use them and where to find them. Do not hesitate to contact us if you are uncertain of the feedback channel you should use to share your suggestion or observation with the city!
Members of the Environmental Design Team: Niko Riepponen, Iira Niemeläinen and Martta Pirttioja. Our email addresses are email@example.com.