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Ylva commits to the sustainable demolition Green Deal between the Ministry of the Environment and RAKLI

Ylva is among the first organisations to promote an operating culture that supports sustainable development in the construction industry. The objective of the Green Deal agreement is to increase the utilisation rate of non-hazardous construction and demolition waste to 70 per cent. In its own renovation and demolition projects, Ylva strives for a utilisation rate of over 90 per cent.

The Ministry of the Environment and the real estate association RAKLI signed the first Green Deal agreement in the construction industry on 7 February. The agreement focuses on sustainable demolition and, above all, encourages the construction industry to invest in solutions that support the circular economy.

“Responsible construction is not limited to energy efficiency or the selection of sustainable construction materials. Instead, it penetrates each project stage comprehensively. We have set ambitious goals for our projects from the perspectives of both social sustainability and climate change mitigation. The new commitment is one of the concrete methods with which we support the real estate and construction industries’ development towards carbon neutrality. The 95 per cent recycling rate achieved in the Lyyra project underlines our objective of constructing Finland’s most sustainable building in the Hakaniemi district of Helsinki”, states Antti Kerppola, Ylva CEO.

“Urbanisation accelerates the need for new infrastructure. At the same time, the construction industry must be able to implement all available measures for climate change mitigation while constantly seeking new measures. We cannot build at the expense of future generations,” Kerppola adds.

Ylva commenced three significant construction projects in January 2020. One of the projects involves building a state-of-the-art hotel in the very centre of Helsinki. The new hotel will integrate the Kalevan talo building also known as Seurahuone with the New Student House and the Hansatalo building in the inner yard. At the same time, Ylva develops the Kaivopiha plaza as a central attraction that increases the number of services available at the end of the Aleksanterinkatu Street and provides the city centre with lively and pleasant urban space. The Lyyra project in the Hakaniemi district has already progressed from internal demolition to frame demolition, and the demolition of the building at Toinen Linja 7 will be completed by the end of March.

A trailblazer in the circular economy: 90 per cent utilisation rate

All of Ylva’s construction projects strive for a utilisation rate of over 90 per cent. A pre-demolition audit has been carried out for each construction project, and in the case of the Lyyra project, the utilisation rate reaches 95 per cent. For example, the demolition of the office buildings in the Kallio district is carried out jointly with Delete. Delete utilises concrete sourced from the demolished buildings in the manufacture of the DeleKivi® material which can be used in civil engineering projects, such as road construction.

Some of the central Helsinki hotel project’s demolition materials have been sent all the way to Gambia where the old water fixtures will be reused. In addition, the new hotel will utilise part of the old hotel’s furniture.

What are the Green Deal agreements?

  • Green Deals are voluntary agreements between the State and the business sector with the aim of taking joint action to promote sustainable development by seeking solutions to mitigate climate change and promote the circular economy.
  • The agreements complement or increase the efficiency of the current legislation, and they often set more ambitious targets than the legislation.
  • The agreements are concluded with unions and associations, such as RAKLI in this Green Deal. Companies, such as Ylva, may commit to the agreements that concern a specific industry.

Further information

Antti Kerppola, CEO, tel. +358 45 353 2187

Jannica Aalto, Marketing and Communications Director, tel. +358 45 1347 636 (media inquiries)

Ylva’s goal is to build the Helsinki of the future. The Helsinki of the future is an international and sustainable city of science and economy. Our business operations focus on the real estate and restaurant industries. Our owners are the students of the Student Union of the University of Helsinki. In 2018, Ylva’s turnover was 33.5 million euros and operating result 5.5 million euros.
Until 20 March 2019, Ylva was known as HYY Group.