Tampere is a comfortable and vibrant city of 240 000 residents. The city centre is surrounded by beautiful lake and ridge scenery, sited on an isthmus between lakes Pyhäjärvi and Näsijärvi. With a growing population, the city is a hub for students, innovation and sustainability. Testing new ideas in Living lab and test bed conditions are good examples of the innovative development done in the city. The new urban area of Hiedanranta is exemplary for using city areas as test beds or living labs for sustainable experiments in different themes. Through floating gardens, edible parks and various food producing companies piloting their new products, food has a pivotal role in the Hiedanranta area.

Food is an important part of activities in the city and its nearby areas, with the greater Tampere region of Pirkanmaa housing more than 4400 food producers. Food production can also be seen around the city, with inhabitants enjoying growing food in allotment gardens, garden plots and in their own yards. New urban areas also invest in the development of urban gardening possibilities in their green spaces. The Hatanpää allotment garden, established in 1916, was among the first in Finland.

Main objectives and planned implementations

  • Creating methodology and establishing a Living Lab (LL) in Tampere with (but not limited to) the following actions
    • Creating Biointensive raised-bed Garden plot for regenerative urban micro-farming business model
    • Research and innovative LL product & concept development together with students of Tampere University (TAMK), companies and public sector actors.
    • Promos, pop-up -restaurants and participatory workshops are implemented in real life environment and in TAMK Catering Studio
    • Develop concepts of urban micro-farming for citizens, neighbourhoods, NGO’s, public organisations, e.g. schools and kindergartens and produce educational materials and (ICT) tools needed for the concepts
    • Developing a concept of community kitchen in the nursing home Kotipirtti
    • Focusing on distribution through e.g. developing and promoting Pirkanmaa brand
    • Inviting different actors to participate in creating a Living Lab for sustainable food transformation in Tampere
  • Policies definition at local level and creating an urban food action plan responsible for peri-urban and rural interlinks.
    • Collection of information on food system projects and policies, local framework development.
    • Integration of food systems vision and roadmap to the Sustainable Tampere 2030 strategy and taking into account other areas such as City Planning to develop a sustainable urban food system
    • Workshops and seminars related to sustainable food systems.
  • Coaching and learning exchange. Dissemination of results on national and regional level and through food sector coordination groups.
Nekala Allotment garden drone view. Photo by Laura Vanzo / Visit Tampere
Tammerkoski by night. Photo by Laura Vanzo

Local partners

  • Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK)
  • Ahlman
  • EcoFellows
Hiedanranta edible garden green houses. Photo by Laura Vanzo / Visit Tampere


Karoliina Tuukkanen

Project Manager

+385 41 7301710


Tampere | City of Tampere (tampere.fi)