Helsinki - the walking capital of the world

HSL wants to encourage everyone in the metropolitan area to walk more. Walking brings cities to life and supports citizens’ physical and mental wellbeing. Walking is also a fundamental aspect of using public transport and an important element in urban trip chains.

“Walking has significant effects on people’s health and attractiveness of cities, as well as on emissions and air quality. The Helsinki region provides safe and convenient opportunities for walking. There is high potential for walking and HSL’s goal is ambitious: we want to make Helsinki region the walking capital of the world,” says Senior Advisor Tarja Jääskeläinen from HSL.

To promote walking, HSL invited a world-famous wildlife photographer Will Burrard-Lucas to Helsinki. In April, he spent two days photographing pedestrians in the Helsinki region. The shoots are part of HSL’s and the Helsinki region municipalities’ joint goal of turning the metropolitan area into the walking capital of the world.
Burrard-Lucas is known for his amazing animal photos. He has photographed wild animals in countries such as Zambia, Namibia and Tanzania, and now Finland is next on his list. Burrard-Lucas spent two days in Helsinki Region photographing large mammals in their natural habitat – humans walking in their hometown.

Burrard-Lucas chose the hundred best photos of the feet that passed him by. They are published for example on HSL’s Instagram account

”When we asked Burrard-Lucas to photograph people, he was at first confused. He noted, however, that any activity that we can do that reduces carbon emissions or improves air quality, however small, is worthwhile to do. It is important to get people a trigger to stop and think about their choices. We at HSL strive to make a difference by promoting zero-emission mobility,” says Mari Flink, HSL’s Director of Customer Experience and Sales.

“I am a great advocate of walking. When I am not in the wild photographing animals, I spend long days sat in front of a computer and so the chance to stretch my legs and get some exercise is always welcome. Whenever possible, I would prefer to walk rather than travel by underground, taxi or bus. Not only is walking my favorite way to explore and experience a city, it is also a time when I can get lost in my own thoughts. Of course, as a wildlife photographer, the environment is also an important consideration for me,” says Burrard-Lucas.

See the documentary Walking capital of the world

More information: Mrs Mari Flink, Director of HSL’s Customer Experience and Sales Department

© Photo: HSL / Will Burrard-Lucas photographed people in the Helsinki region on April.

  • Updated : July 25, 2018

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