City of Lahti in Finland is seeking solutions to reduce the carbon footprint of construction in both new and old buildings. The city-owned tenement housing company begins the building of energy-efficient apartment blocks.
Wood construction will take a step forward in Finland when the city-owned tenement housing company Lahden Talot Oy starts the construction of the first wooden apartment block in 2021 in Lahti.
The goal is to build a block of wooden apartment buildings near the city centre of Lahti within the next two to three years. All new buildings will have the highest energy performance classification, class A. The buildings will be equipped with, for example, solar power plants, generating electricity for purposes such as cooling the building. In addition, LED lights will be used in the lighting fixtures in the yards, common areas and apartments.
Lahti is the European Green Capital 2021
Lahti, a city located in Southern Finland with approximately 120,000 inhabitants, is the European Environmental Capital in 2021. The city aims to be carbon neutral already by 2025, ten years earlier than the State of Finland. As one means of achieving the goal, Lahti is strongly developing its competence in carbon-neutral construction.
In autumn 2020, Lahti established a two-year development project on carbon neutral construction that promotes sustainable construction and provides a platform for new innovations of companies. The Development Centre for Low-carbon Construction involves the City of Lahti and the city-owned construction companies, as well as the educational institutions and several companies in the area.
Some of Finland’s largest wood processing companies, Koskisen Oy and Versowood, are based in Lahti. In addition, the local university of applied sciences is the only place in Finland where to study for a bachelor’s degree in wood technology. Therefore, Lahti is a great place to promote wood construction.
Wood construction mitigates climate change
Finland is one of the most forested countries in the world, but it is not very common to make apartment blocks of wood in the country. However, the costs of wood construction have become lower due to increased demand and more companies in the sector.
Wood is a renewable resource and a natural carbon sink that reduces carbon dioxide emissions during the building’s life cycle.
“The new energy-efficient wooden apartment blocks are a good example of our concrete actions as the European Green Capital 2021 while we move towards the forerunner position in carbon-neutral construction”, says Pekka Timonen, Mayor of Lahti.