Functional City for People

It is estimated that by 2050 up to 70% of the world’s population will be living in urban areas. Metropolia has founded the Functional city for People innovation hub to address the challenges and opportunities of urbanisation, urban culture and lifestyles. 

Within the vivid discussion on smart cities, the human perspective often seems less addressed. Nevertheless, cities are build for people, and provide backdrop to the daily lives and activities of increasing number of urban citizens.

As acknowledged by the Habitat III New Urban Agenda, public spaces play a crucial role in urban interaction and systemic urban innovation. The functionalities of daily living, services, traffic and work can create a framework for sustainable, inclusive and happy communities.

Metropolia has specialized in finding solutions for future challenges in collaboration with local residents and organisations, as well as learning and co-creating with international research networks. The shared innovations become reality with urbanites and like-minded globally challenging each other to make life better through science and applying it to everyday life.

The innovation hub aspires to bring together actors from various fields and sectors, cities and countries to explore and learn together and to innovate and test out various human-centered urban solutions to co-create better cities for us all. 

Although the hub is currently in its starting phase, it is based upon number of ongoing and past projects that fit within its scope and builds the basis for on-going growth of expertise over this phenoma. 

Augmented Urbans project: people walking in the parkResearch and Development

Augmented Participation For More Sustainable Urban Futures

New augmented, virtual, and mixed reality technologies can boost co-design and make often complex urban planning processes and scenarios easier to understand.

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Research and Development

Campus areas as Labs for Participatory Urban Design

Higher education campuses can serve as local living labs and guides for new planning and design approaches. Six cities around the Baltic Sea utilised participatory design methods in developing their local campuses.

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Research and Development

Design for a Cycling City

Students have met the challenge of sustainable urban transportation by creating novel service concepts and quick prototypes to spark the public discussion - and, in some cases, to see their handiwork realised in the cityscape!

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Augmented Urbans project graphicsEvents

Extending Design Realities – Technologies for urban participation and resilience 28.5.2019

Join us in discussions with leading experts from XR and urban planning fields, and experience fascinating XR solutions yourself in the newly established Helsinki XR Center!

More info on XR event on Augmented Urbans site

Visitor testing virtual glasses in Integrated planning pop-up event, photo Tiia EttalaEvents

Pop-up action for integrated planning at Teollisuuskatu 21.1.-1.2.2019

The pop-up brought both urban planners working on the outline plan for Teollisuuskatu area, and new XR prototypes to be tested for participatory planning on site for two weeks.

More info on pop-up event on Augmented Urbans site

Augmented Urbans project graphicsEvents

Augmented Urbans afternoon: Cities in (climate) change 3.12.2018

Afternoon discussion on how modern, participatory technology benefit climate adaptive cities, and how resilience thinking could be boosted in urban planning.

More info on afternoon event 



As part of Helsinki Design Week Programme, Open Campus welcomes you to our new Arabia campus. Come and join the discussion about the designer’s active role in the future.



Mona Roman

Director Mona Roman
mona.roman metropolia fi


Anna-Maria Vilkuna

Director, Research and Development Anna-Maria Vilkuna
anna-maria.vilkuna metropolia fi