Ecological sustainability is a key point of emphasis in planning Helsinki Garden. This entails, among other things, the location of the Garden, utilizing the ecological benefits of modern underground building engineering as well as construction materials and technology. Ecological sustainability is a central element in the planning of Garden’s operations as well.
The Garden will be situated in the Eläintarha area, at the apex of numerous well-established and developing public transport routes. However, the plans will also take into account the parking demands of the event arena and its complementary facilities and services and the surrounding workplaces. After its construction, the Garden will add significant and much needed private parking capacity to the whole area, benefiting the customers of the Olympic Stadium and Sonera Stadium and the local residents in addition to the Garden guests. Thanks to the Garden’s location and the excellent public transport network of Helsinki, the strain of traffic will not exceed the current level.
The plan is to build the Garden event arena almost entirely underground. Space-requiring operations and other essential services will be placed underground, increasing the concentration of the urban area while limiting constraint on the above-ground environment.
Rock engineering significantly improves the energy efficiency of constructing. The energy efficiency of an event arena suitable for ice sports is challenging, but quarrying it into bedrock will reduce its energy consumption to about half of that of a conventional construction solution.
Thanks to modern technology, quarrying causes significantly less stress on the immediate environment. Large quarrying assignments have been successfully carried out even in the busiest sections of Helsinki city center, for example during the construction of Kamppi shopping center.
Helsinki Garden aims to keep energy loss at a minimal level through the application of state-of-the-art technology. Heat recovery is essential for the energy efficiency of the Garden premises. For example, the heat energy produced by condensation from the arena icing system is recovered and can be redirected to the district heating network and applied to provide heating for other premises at the Garden. For example, excess heat can be recovered from the tap water of the hotel and other locations as well as the exhaust fumes generated by vehicles in the parking facility.
Garden is applying for two globally recognized environmental certificates known as LEED and BREEAM. They appraise the environmental sustainability of real estate projects during and after construction.
LEED is a standard defined by the U.S. Green Building Council that evaluates the ecological effects of construction projects. Basic information on the LEED certificate and its aims can be found here and in the USGBC web pages.
BREEAM is a sustainability standard for construction projects created by the British Building Research Establishment that has been universally acknowledged since 1990.