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Sweco’s experience design consulting renews the construction industry: Experience design includes attractiveness to built environment projects

Published: Oct 2, 2023

Sweco brings experience design to built environment projects. The aim is to strengthen the attractiveness of the sites and facilities to be built and the services produced in them, and to support the clients’ business goals. Sweco’s new experience design team has a strong track record of developing for example tourism and leisure areas in Finland and abroad.

“Construction, regional and urban planning must offer attractive spaces where both residents and visitors are happy to come and stop to spend their time. Sustainable construction and responsible regional planning also take users into account and strengthen ownership – how spaces are integrated into one’s everyday life, as it were, or what kinds of factors make people travel or visit certain places and spaces over and over again,” says Team Manager Janne Posio from Sweco.

Experience design is a broader perspective on real estate and regional development than service design, and it explores a deeper customer experience: in experience design, the aim is to strengthen the attractiveness and business goals of the sites and spaces being built.

Experience design is utilised in both private and public sector projects, especially in the early stages of projects related to service business, when commercial goals are also being planned for the site or area to be built. Cities and residential environments, halls and arenas, public spaces, nature sites and hiking areas, as well as shopping centres and cities are examples of clients and project target groups for experience design.

Sweco’s experience design team has a background in developing Tahko, Levi and Vanajanlinna

The experience design is commonly part of project development in North America, for example, and Sweco aims to support attractiveness of its clients’ projects implemented in Finland with similar systematic manner. In Finland, customer experience consulting has already been carried out to some extent locally and at individual sites in construction and regional development projects.

The Experience Design team is a new business unit at Sweco as part of development consulting for built environment and commercial development for construction industry. At the core of the team are long-term strategy and concept professionals Pekka Vihma and Petteri Tuominen, who are behind tourism and leisure development projects both in Finland and internationally, for example in Tahko, Levi and the Vanajanlinna area of Hämeenlinna.

“It’s not just about buildings and objects, it’s also about being there for life and people. Experience design makes the client’s business more attractive, convincing and commercial, and at the same time we develop spaces in our living environment where people feel comfortable and want to spend their time. We make extensive use of interactive and inspiring workshop methods as well as a solid data and knowledge base to support the client’s project and decision-making. It has been verified that the experience of end customers and users should be taken into account in the design from the very beginning,” Vihma and Tuominen describe Sweco’s service as a whole.

In practice, experience design means conceptualisation, strategy formulation, anticipation of the future, commercialisation or solving leadership challenges. Experience design is particularly important in projects where the end customer or user can be identified and whose experience, success or well-being ultimately determine the success of the project.

“The end customer’s experience is a new angle, especially in larger built environment projects. Sweco has done similar things to its credit, for example in healthcare projects, but we want to bring customer experience and commerciality strongly into urban development and early-stage urban planning as well. Where a lot of people move around or there is a desire to bring people together, there is enormous potential to develop into an attractive hub that supports everyday well-being. For example, railway station areas can make everyday life easier for city dwellers and support sustainable urban development when they are designed to serve other every-day or leisure needs in addition to mobility needs,” says Juho Siipo, Sweco’s Division Director, Infrastructure and Transportation, summing up the benefits of experience design.

Further information:
Juho Siipo, Division Director, Infrastructure and Transportation, Sweco, tel. +358 40 076 4890,  juho.siipo@sweco.fi
Janne Posio, Team Manager, Sweco, tel. +358 40 862 0819, janne.posio@sweco.fi
Heini Jokinen, media contact, Sweco, tel. +358 40 718 0063, heini.jokinen@sweco.fi