Building services solutions ensure the performance and safety of the City Rail Loop

Granlund Oy was selected as a designer for the project

Granlund Oy was selected as a designer of the City Rail Loop. The company will be responsible for the HVAC and fire protection design of the entire rail line, tunnels and stations. The “Nissinen Niemistö Granlund” consultancy group will be responsible for the electrical and automation design.

The City Rail Loop is a planned urban railway line for commuter trains under the Helsinki city center, starting from Pasila and running via Töölö, Helsinki city enter and Hakaniemi and then back to Pasila. The City Rail Loop will make train traffic smoother, particularly in the Helsinki region. The challenge is that the tunnel is to be built in an existing urban environment. “The HVAC designers have to pay particular attention to the existing properties and, for example, to the planned underground parking garages,” says Paavo Tikkanen, head of the HVAC department at Granlund Oy.

In terms of electrical engineering, the connections to the existing properties are challenging from the point of view of system design and planned technical facilities. “In a long-term project like the City Rail Loop, it is important to assess what the built environment will look like in 5-6 years and how it will affect the technical solutions,” says Matti Urjo, head of the electrical engineering department at Granlund Oy. Working together as a consultancy group is also something new in the field of electrical engineering. The “Nissinen Niemistö Granlund” cooperation is, therefore, a pioneering effort.

At its deepest, the City Rail Loop tunnel will run 45 meters below sea level in the city center. According to Tikkanen, the HVAC and fire protection solutions have to take the special features of underground construction into consideration, which Granlund is familiar with due to the work done, for example, in connection with the west metro. “However, in comparison with the west metro, the City Rail Loop tunnels are more spacious because of the different contact lines,” Tikkanen explains. Good building engineering and systems ensure the smoothness and safety of transportation.

The Finnish Transport Agency and the City of Helsinki are jointly responsible for the City Rail Loop planning. “At the moment we are working on the railway plan in accordance with the Railway Act and then we’ll move on to the building plan. The architectural design and rock engineering work began at the end of 2013 and HVAC design and structural engineering began in March. The railway plan will be completed this year and the building plans by the end of 2016,” says project manager Jussi Lindberg from the Finnish Transport Agency.

The final decision on the project has not yet been made. The Parliament can decide on the building of the City Rail Loop at the earliest by the end of 2014.

Further information:


  • Paavo Tikkanen, Head of Department, HVAC, Granlund Oy, tel. +358 50 563 8223,

Electrical engineering and automation:

  • Antti Danska, Managing Director, Insinööritoimisto Tauno Nissinen Oy, tel. +358 50 559 1811,
  • Teemu Määttänen, Managing Director, Sähköinsinööritoimisto Oy Niemistö, tel. +358 40 5030 5133,
  • Matti Urjo, Head of Department, electrical engineering, Granlund Oy, tel. +358 50 525 2242,