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Significant number of those elected to the Helsinki City Council supported the goals of the World Student Capital network!

A city bike network under trial in Espoo as well!

World Student Capital network
For immediate release

The World Student Capital network formed by student unions in the capital city area is encouraging Espoo in its good intentions to try out a city bike network! City bikes are a great way to increase everyday exercise, reduce traffic jams and increase connectedness to the area. The city bike network does not have to be limited to municipal boundaries, but rather the system that leans on the Western Metro Extension in South Espoo is a natural continuation of the city bike zone of the metropolitan area.

The second stage of the city bike network will begin on the Helsinki side next summer. The network will expand to near Espoo, to Munkkiniemi and Lauttasaari. In our opinion, the system on the Espoo side should be connected as part of the Helsinki-side system in two ways. Firstly, the systems of Espoo and Helsinki should work with the same payment so that a city bike can be used in combination with a metro journey at both the start and end of the journey, when the journey crosses the municipal boundary. Secondly, the system should be designed so that cycling from Otaniemi to Munkkiniemi or from Keilaniemi to Lauttasaari on the Helsinki side is possible.

The World Student Capital network considers Otaniemi in particular as a fundamental area for the placement of city bikes. In comparison with the other city structure along the Western Metro Extension, a significant number of students move around precisely in the Otaniemi area, who are a fundamental user group for city bikes. According to the ‘Opiskelijan kaupunki’  (‘The City of the Student’) study (1), 31 percent of students state cycling to be their favourite form of exercise and 30 percent cycle at least a few times a week. In Espoo, people even cycle daily (25.4.%) significantly more than in Helsinki (6.1%) or in Vantaa (2.7%). Espoo also has a target in its cycling promotion directive (2) to more than double the bicycle journeys done on working days during the autumn, where adoption of city bikes in the area would be a step in the right direction.

Not only will the campus of all the colleges of Aalto University be located in Otaniemi from here on, but there is also, in its immediate proximity, one of the campuses of the Laurea University of Applied Sciences, for which a connection from the metro station of Otaniemi by city bike would be natural. At the same time, it would lower the threshold for the use of the services of Otaniemi and connect the Laurea campus more closely as a part of the innovation cluster of the 3T area. The 3T area that surrounds Otaniemi, i.e. Tapiola-Otaniemi-Keilaniemi, is also otherwise especially cyclable in terms of its distances, but not everyone brings their own bike to the campus or workplace. The population base in the area is growing continuously. In the summer of 2018, the Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture is moving to Otaniemi and then the Aalto University School of Business, in a few years’ time. These will bring 4,000 new students to the area and, we hope, also many new student flats. We believe that there would be a lot of demand for city bikes in the area!

We hope that Espoo takes up this excellent way to increase the amount of cycling, everyday exercise and area connections and decides to start trying out city bikes!

In the capital city area, 21.11.2016

Andrey Veremenko, The Chairperson of the World Student Capital network

Milja Asikainen, The Chairperson of Aalto University Student Union
Jenna Kortelainen, Styrelseordförande för Arcada studerandekår ASK
Iiris Hynönen, Diakonia-ammattikorkeakoulun opiskelijakunnan hallituksen puheenjohtaja
Max Laihonen, Haaga-Helian opiskelijakunta Helgan hallituksen puheenjohtaja
Susanna Jokimies, Helsingin yliopiston ylioppilaskunnan hallituksen puheenjohtaja
Jenna Ojala, Humanistisen ammattikorkeakoulun opiskelijakunta HUMAKO:n hallituksen puheenjohtaja
Juho Kärkkäinen, Laurea-ammattikorkeakoulun opiskelijakunnan hallituksen puheenjohtaja
Emmi Paajanen, Metropolia Ammattikorkeakoulun opiskelijakunta METKA:n hallituksen puheenjohtaja
Rasmus Sinnemaa, Styrelseordförande för Svenska handelshögskolans studentkår
Piia Peltola, Taideyliopiston ylioppilaskunnan hallituksen puheenjohtaja

Further information:
The member of the Board of AYY, Säde Palmu,, 040 562 3035

1.    The ‘Opiskelijan kaupunki’ (‘The City of the Student’) study
2.    The cycling promotion programme of Espoo

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