We did not get the title of Capital of Culture, but the project continues – with a limited version

Tampere and Pirkanmaa did not finally get the title of European Capital of Culture for 2026. The title went to Oulu. However, the project will continue in a narrower form from 2022 to 2024, so the work done so far will not be wasted.

“The Capital of Culture project has resulted in a huge number of program proposals, the utilization of which is important in promoting cultural services, creative economy and tourism in Tampere and Pirkanmaa”, says Perttu Pesä, director of the Tampere26 project.

“The application book prepared jointly by Tampere and Pirkanmaa contains sections that we will implement in any case. We have gained new impetus and good ideas during the application process to develop a common cultural offer and experiences”, said Tampere Mayor Lauri Lyly after confirming the result.

The possibility of not selecting Tampere was already taken into account in the Capital of Culture bid book. It includes the scenario that 10% of the planned budget will in any case be allocated to the implementation of the project if Tampere is not selected. That means an investment of around EUR 2.5 million in the next few years.

Extensive goals have been set for the follow-up project, such as utilizing the program work done in the application phase and utilizing international networks, promoting the values ​​of the Tampere26 project, further developing provincial co-operation, strengthening Pirkanmaa’s identity and strengthening employment, knowledge base and network.

The schedule is tightening

What does this smaller project mean in terms of schedule? It means a quicker pace of implementation than if Tampere had been awarded the title of Capital of Culture.

The current Capital of Culture project will officially end on 30 June 2021. This will be followed by a six-month temporary phase focusing on the construction of a follow-up project and the further preparation of the contents.

The six-month period until the end of 2021 includes a lot of work for a small intermediate organization: in addition to finalizing the Capital of Culture bid, international networks must be maintained, EU projects must be mobilized and cultural productions must be mapped. The functional and administrative preparation of production support must be done and the further development of cultural co-operation in Pirkanmaa must be taken care of.

For the financing of this intermediate stage, the Tampere City Council approved on 14 June. an increase of EUR 200 000 in this year’s budget.

The actual project will happen 2022-2024. This will be done with joint contributions from the City of Tampere and the municipalities of Pirkanmaa.

Once more, let’s get back to 2nd of June when the name of the new capit6al of culture was published. These people were attending the event in Helsinki: Lauri Lyly, Perttu Pesä, Reidar Palngren ja Anna-Kaisa Heinämäki. The project continues.