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Small water bodies and their management

Small water bodies include creeks, ponds and springs. Small water bodies in urban areas are important habitats for flora and fauna, and they provide valuable outdoor environments for residents.

Small water bodies are held in high ecological and recreational value, and they make important contributions to landscapes. Small water bodies are earning due respect in city planning and ecology.


Helsinki has more than 30 creeks. The Urban Environment Division's Environment services has been monitoring creek water quality since 1982, and today it monitors 34 creeks. In addition to creeks in urban areas, a few creeks flow through forests and agricultural land in Östersundom.

Typical of creeks in Helsinki are large impenetrable surfaces in their catchment area, pipes for storm and creek water, large variations in flow volumes, intermittent high volumes of solid matter in water, erosion of channels, hygienic problems, replacement and reshaping of channels, and diminishing natural flora.

To improve the ecological conditions of creeks, the City of Helsinki has renovated many creeks with voluntary organizations. The spawning of trout has been eased, channels have been rebuilt with stones, meanders have been increased, new flooding arrangements have been built, pipes have been replaced by bridges, and banks have been supported. 


Ponds are almost invariably small and overgrown in Helsinki, and they have no outlets. Water is replaced slowly, and storm water in the ponds’ catchment areas is usually conducted somewhere else than into the ponds.

Most ponds in Helsinki are man-made, but some Helsinki islands and Östersundom still have some natural ponds. Storträsk in Östersundom could be classified as a lake because of its large size.

Helsinki has over 40 ponds, 22 of them monitored by the Environment services, which has been monitoring ponds since 2006.

The City of Helsinki has begun to renovate ponds, starting from the Saunapellonpuisto pond in Viikki.


06.12.2019 18:41