In the 1960s planning began for a new residential area to provide relief from Helsinki’s city center.
By 1972 construction had started in Pasila, and with the train station and feeder bus connections the area soon became the second largest junction in Finland. Pasila is now divided into three distinct areas; eastern Ita-Pasila, built in the 70s with an elevated pedestrian deck separating walkers from cars, western Länsi-Pasila built in the 80s with residential red brick buildings bordering the Central Park, and central Keski-Pasila, at the heart of the district amid old railway buildings.
There’s currently a huge construction effort next to the railway station, which when completed in 2020 will fulfill the promise of Pasila becoming Helsinki’s “second center”. The new Tripla shopping and residential center will be three times larger than the Kamppi center in the city and is being built in an energy efficient and environmentally conscious manner. I live in Ita-Pasila and while this area has been listed as one of Helsinki’s least favorite residential areas, I love the convenience of being next to the train station and the slightly other-worldly, space ship feel of the elevated streets and half-finished buildings- especially when foggy mist settles on the area.
While Pasila lacks the cafe culture of nearby Kallio there are several things I love about this area:
- Boulderkeskus– a bouldering gym in Keski-Pasila
- Dodo– a grassroots environmental organization next to Boulderkeskus
- Neighbouring park lands– the Central Park to the west and Puur-Kumpula to the east
- For me it’s the ideal location to walk both to work and the gym and a 3 minute train ride to the city center
- Cheap rent! The main reason I moved here
Here’s some images of the place I’ve called home the last 6 months.