Helsinki is a highly livable mid-sized city that has great transit and makes lots of room for pedestrians and cyclists.
By Bob Manoljovich
Published July 19, 2018
Helsinki is a mid-sized city of around 640,000 residents on 214 square kilometres of land on the southern coast of Finland. Not just the site of US President Donald Trump's recent secret meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Helsinki is also a beautiful, highly livable city that offers valuable object lessons for other mid-sized cities, like Hamilton.
Helsinki features beautiful, centuries-old street walls with a complete lack of surface parking or vacant lots.
Downtown Helsinki is dominated by wide, tree-lined sidewalks with limited lanes for automobile traffic.
Esplanade Park is one of many open public spaces filled with people.
The park opened in 1812.
Many cyclists use the extensive network of bike lanes separated from automobile traffic.
Separated bike lanes
Helsinki has a light rail transit (LRT) system that is nicely integrated into its compact urban streets. No cars are allowed on this street, and it is consistently filled with people walking, cycling and riding transit.
Light Rail Transit
Central Helsinki has a large, lively open market full of people walking and surrounded by bicycles.
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