The Port of Helsinki (PoH) has been long working on integrating the port and its operations with the surrounding community, of which the port is an integral part. To be able to operate efficiently, the port needs to have a proactive, ongoing and inclusive dialogue with its neighbors. Port operations close to people’s lives are not without challenges: traffic, emissions and other side effects demand that the port listens and acts on the feedback received by the many people of its shared neighborhood.
The PoH commitment to societal integration s demonstrated though the following actions and initiatives:
In the last 10 years representatives of PoH have attended a considerable number of town hall forums regarding the development of the city, to be able to share development visions, and to answer questions. Nowadays a lot of questions are also raised through social media, and therefore the port’s experts, and not just the communications specialists, have for many years already taken part in the dialogue online in multiple groups and forums.
PoH sets up multiple events annually for the sole benefit of the port neighbors: a block party close to the Western harbor, a playful fishing event each summer, a “Visit the harbor”-day in Vuosaari to name a few. Of course the port experts, including the PoH CEO, attend these events, to get to know the people and their concerns.
The port measures progress systematically, and the latest results show that city council members find the port a very reliable partner.
PoH environmental incentive program for vessels that started in 2017 has had the desired effect, and different emissions (including noise) are now lower in the port area as a result of it.
“The Port as a Functioning Part of the City” is one of PoH six spearhead projects in the new port strategy.