Majority of members of Helsinki City Council oppose Guggenheim
A majority of the members of the Helsinki City Council appear to be opposed to setting up a Guggenheim museum in Helsinki.
In an ad hoc poll commissioned by the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE, the construction of the museum was supported by only a quarter of the councillors who responded.
A total of 75 of the 85 members on the Helsinki City Council replied to the survey, and 36 said they were against the idea on the present footing.
Opposition was total among councillors from the Left Alliance, Finns Party, and Christian Democrats, while only one Social Democrat supported the venture and nine were against it.
Within the Greens and the National Coalition Party, the two largest parties on the Council, there was a split (7-7 in the Greens and 8-5 in favour in the NCP).
With nearly 50% of those answering one way or another saying "No", things are compounded by the fact that several of those in the "Yes" camp still have some reservations and some questions they want answered - mainly over the funding of the venture.
A further 20 who agreed to respond to the YLE survey did so by saying they had yet to make up their mind on the matter. Several look to be leaning towards a "No" answer.
The City Council is expected to decide in March or April if it will give the green light to the Guggenheim project.
A decision was originally to have been made in December, but the deadline was postponed in order to give time for comments on the project by various interested parties.
According to YLE, the councillors are now waiting for a letter of intent in order to get more information about the details of the project, before making a final decision.
Previously in HS International Edition:
Helsinki City Council groups undecided on stands on Guggenheim (27.2.2012)
Members of Helsinki municipal boards to get cautious assessments of Guggenheim from city officials (13.2.2012)
Ministry of Culture trashes its own Guggenheim assessment (2.2.2012)
Working group favours construction of Guggenheim museum in Helsinki (11.1.2012)