Helsinki’s participatory budgeting vote ended at the end of October. Almost 400 proposals from the citizens were put to the vote, with a total of €8.8 million to be distributed.
The number of city residents who participated in the OmaStadi vote was 47,064. The turnout was 8.1% in the whole city. On an international scale, the voting turnout in Helsinki’s participatory budgeting is good. Proposals had been made both for the seven major districts and for the entire city.
Sports and outdoor activities were of interest to the city residents. This theme was the subject of the highest number of proposals in almost all major districts. These proposals also gained the most votes, nearly 30% of the votes cast.
The next largest number of votes were cast for proposals relating to parks and nature and for proposals relating to community and ecology.
The city residents submitted nearly 1,500 ideas to OmaStadi. In spring 2021, the ideas were developed into 397 proposals to be voted on. The city residents were most interested in proposals for their own major district, and the voting turnout for them was about 8%. Common proposals for the whole city attracted almost equal interest, with a turnout of 6%.
Give feedback on the OmaStadi vote
OmaStadi is constantly being developed, so feedback from city residents is important. The city is currently collecting feedback on the voting. Based on the feedback received, the OmaStadi voting process will be developed to make it work even better. The survey will be open to Helsinki residents until 31 December 2021.
Children’s wish for new toys fulfilled
One wish that proceeded from the voting phase to implementation was for new toys and play equipment for twelve playgrounds in Western Helsinki. The proposal was developed by recording children’s wishes at schoolchildren’s meetings, during afternoon activities and in the daily life at playgrounds with families with young children.
In addition to the children, the acceptance of the proposal also pleased Playground Nuoli’s instructor Susanna Halinen
– Our current toys are in bad shape. It’s great that we are getting new toys, Halinen said.
OmaStadi vote by major district and age group
There were differences in the voting turnout between the major districts. However, the turnout increased slightly for people over 20 years of age in all major districts.
Eastern and Östersundom 5.9
The most active OmaStadi voters were schoolchildren aged 11–15, with a turnout of 19% in this age group. However, the voting turnout of schoolchildren fell significantly, which had an impact on the voting results of the whole city. OmaStadi also interested the working-age population and people with families. For example, the turnout of those aged 30–49 was about 10%. OmaStadi was the least popular among Helsinki residents over 75 years of age.
The City of Helsinki will publish a more extensive report on the 2021 OmaStadi vote early next year.
Helsinki residents also to be involved in planning the implementation of proposals
The City of Helsinki will implement the proposals voted by the city residents. City residents can participate in the project planning and interaction in many different ways, depending on the project. The interaction will start in spring 2022. In the spring, you can follow the progress of project implementation on the omastadi.hel.fi website.
Figure 1. KMG Turku advertising agency.
Figure 2. Kimmo Brandt, City of Helsinki Media Bank.