Editorial | YIT and Paulig forgot their values

A residential building built in Vuosaari disregarded the city’s regulations and entered the investment housing market.

If the penalty for breaking the rules is much smaller than the gain from breaking the rules, so something is wrong. But is the fault in the one who takes advantage of the situation, or in the one who creates such a situation?

Construction group YIT and Paulig signed a contract for a residential building to be built in the center of Vuosaari. Paulig was the owner of the land and the YIT builder.

The city had specified that, among other things, right-of-occupancy apartments and regulated owner-occupied apartments would be built in the area. The city wants to use its rules to steer the socio-economic structure of the city to be equal. However, YIT and Paulig’s house went to investors.

The city’s obligations regarding the form of housing came late, but YIT and Paulig’s solution was not a hasty accident, but a conscious choice. The companies calculated that a contract fine of 600,000 euros is a small price compared to the benefit resulting from breaching the contract. In Helsinki’s investment housing market, that amount is a pittance.

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YIT is now implying in retrospect that the agreement has been complied with when the fines have been paid, which Paulig and YIT prepared for in advance. It is difficult to follow the companies’ logic.

Companies brag to the surrounding society about the values ​​they say they follow. For example, YIT says that “we continue our work to develop society and build a better living environment”. Paulig reminds us that values ​​”guide our behavior and decision-making both as individuals and as an organization”.

Values meaning is always measured in practice – in the small everyday choices that people and organizations make. Maybe Helsinki will remember the value selection of these companies in Vuosaari, when the city next measures contract fines or deals with YIT and Paulig, for example, on land use issues.

The pull between the companies was an embarrassing blow to the credibility of the city of Helsinki in managing the urban structure, even though its economic value is difficult to measure.

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The editorials are HS’s positions on a current topic. The articles are prepared by HS’s editorial department, and they reflect the magazine principle line.

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