The Helsinki city Board decided at its meeting on Monday to make its decisions on the next stages of the proposed Guggenheim Art Museum at a meeting it will hold next Wednesday.
The decision on whether or not to organise an architectural competition around the project is not expected to be an easy one, as the controversial project has split Helsinki’s political groups with many parties having both supporters and opponents of the project.
According to initial assessments the project is expected to move from the City Board to the City Council, as it is getting the support from most of the representatives of the two largest parties on the Board – the National Coalition Party and the Greens, which have nine of the City Board’s 15 members.
“This is a project of such a scale that the City Council must decide whether or not to continue preparations”, says Elina Moisio, the chairwoman of the Green group on the City Board.
The City Council would get a chance to debate the museum project no earlier than May 9th. Osku Pajamäki of the third-largest group on the City Council, the Social Democrats, says that his party wants more information on a number of issues, including the regional economic impact of the project. Without further information the SDP would be willing to reject the entire project already at this stage.
The decision that is before Helsinki decision makers at this stage is whether or not an architectural competition should be organised for the construction of the museum. A decision on whether or not to authorise the actual construction would be made by the next City Council in the autumn of 2013.