Tapiola

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{build, building, house}
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Tapiola (Finnish) or Hagalund (Swedish) is a district of Espoo on the south coast of Finland, and is one of the major urban centres of Espoo. The name Tapiola is derived from Tapio, who is the forest god of Finnish mythology, especially as expressed in the Kalevala, the national epic of Finland.

Tapiola was largely constructed in the 1950s and 1960s by the Finnish apartment foundation and was designed as a garden city. It is the location for the Espoo cultural centre. It is located in the western part of Greater Helsinki.

Contents

History

The original city plans for Tapiola were made by Otto-Iivari Meurman. Later, the apartment foundation made significant changes to the plans, and handed planning of Tapiola over to a group of architects, headed by Aarne Ervi. Each member of the group designed their own part of the area and its buildings. In the middle 1960s, a modern garden city was built, which brought world-wide fame for Finnish urban planning.

Later, the commercial centre of Tapiola has been significantly expanded, by constructing new business and office buildings, not keeping with the original style of Tapiola.

Tapiola is also the cultural centre of Espoo, because it houses the Espoo cultural centre (home to the Tapiola Sinfonietta), the city museum (in the WeeGee house) and the Espoo city theatre. The Tapiola library is located in the cultural centre.

The name Tapiola comes from a competition held by the apartment foundation. The lands originally belonged to the Hagalund mansion.

Services

Finland's first shopping centre, Heikintori, was opened in Tapiola in 1968. The Tapiola centre has a large selection of services: department stores (Stockmann and Sokos), book stores (Akateeminen kirjakauppa and Suomalainen Kirjakauppa), groceries (S-Market, K-Supermarket, Stockmann Herkku), Alko, a post office, banks (Nordea, Sampo, Actia, Osuuspankki, Ålandsbanken, Handelsbanken, Nooa Säästöpankki and Suurpohjan osuuspankki), sports stores (Intersport, Sportia), photography stores, barber's shops, and other small businesses. Public services include the Tapiola health centre, a library, an employment bureau, KELA, the Espoo magistrate and the Espoo tax bureau.

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