Defence Arch – Footprints of Defence in the Archipelago
The project ”Defece Arch – Footprints of Defence in the Archipelago” will develop historical sites of coastal defence into attractive tourist destinations in the Archipelago Sea and the Åland Islands in Finland and in the Stockholm archipelago in Sweden.
The project involves restoration of old fortifications and structures, piloting of digital and virtual guidance, and collaboration in order to enhance the attractiveness of the sites.
Parks & Wildlife Finland is responsible for the restoration of fortifications in the southern tip of Örö island in Archipelago National Park. We will build a circular trail in the area of the barracks and the fortress, and open new, interesting destinations for visitors.
A rest stop, an observation tower and a short suspension bridge will be built along the trail. The destinations to be restored include defence structures of various ages, such as concrete air defence posts, the ruined stations, ammunition storage facilities and shelters of the artillery battery built a hundred years ago, one modernised Canet gun and its subterranean station.
The so-called six-inch barracks area will be restored for use as a camp base for scouts and school groups, by constructing a camping site for tents and converting a supplies storage facility into a dining and multi-purpose facility. In addition, an exhibition presenting the area and its history will be housed in the ammunition storage facility built of stone in 1915. One of the barracks’ underground cellars will be opened for visitors. The vegetation will be cleared at the stone footing of Finland’s first canteen for conscripts of coastal artillery and the control tower for targeting of heavy artillery will be equipped with the required weather protection.
Guidance will focus on testing and development of mobile guidance in collaboration with other project partners, with the aim of introducing a clear, user-friendly and interesting mobile guidance application to Örö island. Guided tours will give visitors access to some previously locked underground caves and posts.
Project schedule: 1 September 2016 – 28 February 2019.
Project budget: Total funding is € 1.534,661. The share of Metsähallitus Parks & Wildlife Finland is € 459,000 which is mostly financied by the Central Baltic Programme (€ 344,250).
Project Manager Hanna Ylitalo
Parks & Wildlife Finland
20300 Turku, Finland
tel. int. +358 40 196 6584
Project partners and sites:
Turku University of Applied Sciences – Lead partner
Parks & Wildlife Finland: – Örö / Archipelago National Park
Åbolands Skärgårdsstiftelse – Korpoström
Visit Åland: Bomarsund
Skärgårdsstiftelsen i Stockholms län: Gålö (Archipelago Foundation of Stockholm archipelago)