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01 juli 2010

Bostaden's dialogue drew a crowd

More than 600 ideas and opinions on sustainability are the result of Bostaden's initial dialogue session on sustainability in the suburb of Ålidhem. The dialogue was conducted with the help of an expert dialogue coordinator who held workshops and sustainability walks. Events were also arranged with the purpose of gathering opinions. The best tips for sustainability have now been chosen. The tenants will also notice one concrete measure as early as August.

"It's incredibly gratifying that so many people have had their say on the environment and the development in Ålidhem in different ways. These are valuable opinions that we will now review and use, where possible, in our work to develop the suburb," says Elisabeth Lind, Head of Communications at Bostaden.

Ålidhem tenants and visitors alike are happy with the suburb, according to responses in the 520 questionnaires submitted during the dialogue session. The pleasant atmosphere and sense of community were some of the characteristics people highlighted as Ålidhem's best.

Price for the best sustainability tips

Tomas Sverin won the competition for best sustainability tips for his idea about a second-hand shop in Ålidhem with the justification:

"Because it is sustainable, simple and representative of what is important to many of Ålidhem's inhabitants. The idea encourages entrepreneurship. It helps to keep the area tidy and attractive. New residents can find things they need for their new home at a good price. It encourages recycling and provides a local service. It's also an idea with potential for development.”

"The suggestion is most welcome and we want to encourage anyone interested in starting up a second-hand shop to do so. We will do what we can to support ideas like this. Maybe this could be done in collaboration with main figures already active in Umeå," says Mikael Lundgren, Manager at Boservice.

Many inspired suggestions

Among the hundreds of ideas and opinions received in the first stage of the dialogue, there were three main themes. These were reusing/recycling, sanitation and energy consumption. Second, third and fourth prize-winners were therefore chosen for ideas with potential for development and which follow these main themes.

  • Anna Berg received second prize for her idea of ”recycling furniture and other reusable items/materials”, very much in line with the idea for a second-hand shop that won first prize.
  • Emma Robert received third prize for her suggestion to introduce ”cleaning weeks for all residents”.
  • Regzedmaa Bayar receives fourth prize for the proposal to introduce separate electricity and water bills for students too.

The first prize for the best sustainability tip is one month rent free, whilst other winners receive a folding bicycle.

More waste bins - one of Bostaden's concrete measures

A concrete result of what arose during the dialogue is that there will now be a considerably larger number of waste bins in Ålidhem. Starting August, more waste bins will be put up, as this was something many Ålidhem inhabitants asked for.

"It's nice that so many of the suggestions are already in our action plans for what we intend to do in Ålidhem. Knowing that we're rectifying issues that our tenants have drawn attention to feels good," says Mikael Lundgren.

The dialogue continues in other forms

In late August, renovation of the first of Ålidhem's buildings, the "pilot building" on Matematikgränd, will commence. The renovation and the construction of the Winter Garden on Geografigränd are items that can be discussed in upcoming dialogues, in addition to the opinions already received.

"Now the first part of the dialogue is complete, we want to base the next dialogue on what we have learned so far. It's simply a matter of following up on the opinions and suggestions we've received, so that we can then get down to a more detailed level," says Elisabeth Lind, Head of Communications at Bostaden.

"We haven't yet decided on the forms for continued dialogue with the inhabitants of Ålidhem and other interested parties, but naturally we welcome anyone to keep the ideas and opinions coming. One way to do this is via the web on Sustainable Ålidhem's own pages, or by contacting one of Ålidhem's area landlords," Elisabeth Lind concludes.

Facts: Sustainable Ålidhem

Bostaden, Umeå Energi and Umeå municipality have received SEK 33 million from the Delegation for Sustainable Cities for the project. The majority of the money from the Delagation will go to pure energy-saving measures, PV-cell trials, small-scale wind power and a Winter Garden. Other than this, Bostaden is also investing in a large low-energy housing area on Geografigränd and working together with the residents to create an attractive living environment. This comprises 500 apartments, 137 of which are new builds. The project will continue through to the end of 2014. At the same time, Bostaden is investing extra resources in the creation of a more pleasant living environment with the help of residents.

Further information:

Mikael Lundgren
Manager Boservice
Tel: 070-324 18 24

Elisabeth Lind 
Head of Communications 
Tel: 070-242 81 42