Mayor of Rauma, Finland (August 2014)

Kari Koski

Kari Koski

Date of birth: 28.09.1952

Address: City of Rauma
Kanalinranta 3 P.O. Box 41
26101 Rauma, Finland

Contact numbers: +358-2-834-11/+358-2-822-0262

Education: Master of Laws

Employers: City of Rauma (2012-), City of Uusikaupunki (1977- 2012)

1) The Old Rauma was registered on the World Heritage List in 1991. What has been the impact of this nomination for your city?

The protection of Old Rauma has been in good level even before the nomination to the World Heritage List. The nomination has increased and deepened the discussion about it. Cooperation with other World Heritage sites has played a significant role. The nomination has also brought more visibility and visitors to Old Rauma and increased awareness of the World Heritage site.

2) In your opinion, what is the vital role of a mayor when a site has been inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List? 

The vital role as a mayor is to bring forth and promote the publicity of Old Rauma. Also promoting the flow of information inside the city organization but as well between the different public and governmental organizations is really important.

3) Concretely, what have been your actions toward the protection and enhancement of your heritage?

The city budget is including every year specific amount resources to maintain and develop the area of Old Rauma. Old Rauma renovation centre Tammela is offering guidance services to residents living in an area of Old Rauma. The large development program of the city centre started 1999 and is still going on.  Rauma’s well-planned and forward thinking city centre was rewarded when Rauma was named the Town Centre of the Year 2009 in Finland.

4) Do you hold special events to enhance your city?

Rauma is the city of festivals. The Lace Week has been organized for already over 30 years, it is celebrated at the end of July. Rauma Blues is organized in July and Festivo, Rauma music festival, at the beginning of August as well as the Blue Sea Film Festival in August.

The Old Rauma entrepreneurs and shops often join together to support commercial events and projects, such as the development of the city centre and the organization of various events.

5) Rauma is remarkable for its traditional wooden architecture and for its urban planning specific to countries of northern Europe. It managed to retain its old appearance, in part owing to the development of the modern city outside the historic centre. Are you able to keep the residential function of the Old Rauma? Is the presence of the local population within the historic centre an asset or a challenge?

We have kept the residential function of Old Rauma very well. As far as we know none of the residential buildings is used as a weekend cottage. Along with that it is essential to keep other central area functions of Old Rauma. Especially important is to keep the commercial services that bring people to the area by  daily basis  and all year round and keep the area part of the living city centre.

The presence of the local population, dwellers and people who use the services, is vital. Without that Old Rauma would not have all its outstanding universal values when nominated for to the World Heritage List.

6) In your opinion, what makes Rauma such a special place?

The city of Rauma has a long and honourable history since 1442.  Old Rauma is the heart of the city. At present Old Rauma is a lively commercial and dwelling area with over 600 inhabitants and 600 buildings.   We are honoured by an unique atmosphere of the World Heritage site Old Rauma. Interesting sights, museums, fascinating shops, many charming cafes, restaurants and artists studios welcome you to get acquainted with this magnificent area!

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