From September 3 to October 1, Tallinn is waiting for proposals on which projects could be financed from the city's participatory budget in 2022.
The total planned amount of the participatory budget in 2022 is 1 million euros. The exact total amount of the participatory budget will be approved by the Tallinn City Council when adopting the 2022 budget at the end of the year. Citizens will be able to support their favourite projects in a public vote in November.
"All residents of Tallinn can present their ideas for the participatory budget for community-driven projects that could be carried out with the city's funding," explained Aivar Riisalu, Deputy Mayor of Tallinn. "First launched last year, the participatory budget gives the city people an additional opportunity to partake in the development of the urban environment and to present their own ideas. In the voting, everyone can have a say in choosing the most necessary projects. One project per year can be implemented in each district with the participatory budget, which has been proposed and selected by the residents of the district.”
The feasibility of the submitted ideas will be assessed by a committee of experts, and the ideas that get selected will be introduced, discussed and then put to a referendum. It must be taken into account that the money of the participatory budget can be used only for objects for public use and open access.
In each district, the projects that were in the previous vote on the participatory budget, but did not receive enough votes to be elected, are also welcome again.
According to Manuela Pihlap, the Deputy Head of Põhja-Tallinn Administration, the city has an experience from last year that people want to have a say, because more than five hundred ideas for the participatory budget were collected. "We also got the experience that we need to start earlier, and the idea gathering of next year’s budget starts already in September. In this way, it is possible to complete successful projects in the summer months of next year. The projects submitted for the participatory budget of last year are currently being completed and the first results can be seen in September. Some of the projects, which were large but equally necessary, will be completed next year," explained Pihlap.
"It is important that the objects built with the participatory budget will have free access and public use for the citizens. We have learned that the participatory budget provides an opportunity to interact with the community: some projects that did not reach the finals indicated to the city what people want to see in the urban space. Such ideas can also be realized outside the participatory budget," said Pihlap. "Be creative and be active - we look forward to original and green ideas!"
Among the projects funded by the participatory budget of 2021 was, for example, the establishment of a miniforest with a sustainable ecosystem on Tildri Street in Kristiine, submitted by Marit Finnie. Forest planting is planned for the last week of September. The landscape solution of the project is based on the idea of a miniforest, which originates from the work of Japanese botanist and plant ecologist Akira Miyawaki. A wide variety of species are planted to achieve the natural forest. Such ecosystems are key to achieving climate goals. The mini-forest attracts migratory songbirds and is a fast feeding area for many birds, animals and insects. Bird nest boxes have been designed in the middle of the park and in the south-east there is a natural rainwater impregnation area. Most of the lawn is designed as an infrequently mowed area.
In Nõmme, the project for the reconstruction of the surface of Pääsküla and Harku health trails, submitted by Robert Peterson, won the participatory budget vote for 2021. Construction is scheduled to begin in September. In addition to resurfacing the tracks, a total of 111 new LED streetlamps will be installed along the tracks of the Harku forest to replace the old luminaires, so that the newly coated trails are safe to use.
A low-level adventure trail in Löwenruh Park is expected to be completed in October this year, the idea of which was put forward by Rachel Karolin Kunda and Annabel Voomets. The adventure trail is designed for older children and offers the opportunity to test your climbing skills in moderate safety. In addition, a small lounge area with benches, a trash can and a bicycle parking lot will be created.
An outdoor gym for the Õismäe Bog health trail, the idea of which was presented by Alo Lõoke, should be completed in September in Haabersti. The outdoor gym training equipment will have the same technological solutions as the indoor gym equipment and the possibility to adjust the weights. Diverse training opportunities will be created for the users of the trail, which would bring more people to exercise in the fresh air all year round.
In the City Centre, the idea that won the vote of the participatory budget was the installation of drinking taps by the health trails, presented by Moonika Kitt and Taimi Saar. To date, most water taps have already been installed and the remaining taps are scheduled to be installed by early September.
At the beginning of September, a Ball Games Arena will be completed on Mustamäe nearby Tallinna 32. Keskkool on Kiili Street, so that everyone interested can play tennis and table tennis in addition to basketball and volleyball, and skate in the winter. The idea was presented by Meelis Raiend.
The Kass August’s Promenade in the area between Telliskivi Rimi and Salme tram stop, presented by Ülle Maiste, Meelis Luukas and Ivika Holm, is planned to be completed in the autumn of 2022 on Kopli Street. The aim of the promenade is to increase the safety of light road users and diversify the urban environment.
The first stage of the Mustakivi pedestrian tunnel renovation project, which won the support of Lasnamäe residents, should be completed before winter. As the cost of the project exceeded expectations, it is divided into two, the second stage being the creation of a new architectural solution for the tunnel. The idea was presented last year by Anastasia Šarõmova and Valentina Lashmanova.
More information on the submission of ideas for the participatory budget and the evaluation process can be found on the website https://www.tallinn.ee/kaasaveelarve/.