The Scottish industrialist James Finlayson knew where to find the best place for setting up a mill in Tampere in the early 19th century. The area selected by him in the heart of Tampere, now known as the Finlayson area, continues to be a prime location.
The Finlayson area is a 7.5-hectare industrial site currently being developed for new purposes. It is situated at the north end of the central Keskustori square, and bordered on its other sides by the Tammerkoski rapids and the Näsinpuisto park, only a stone's throw from Näsinneula lookout tower. The area has strong links to the history of Tampere; indeed, the development of Tampere as a city is said to have begun with the Finlayson mills. The first building, the six-storey, as it was called, was taken into use in the 1830s, and new industrial buildings were constructed up to the 1960s. The Finlayson mills primarily manufactured fabrics, famous for their quality. In the 1860s half of the city's inhabitants were embloyed by Finlayson's - which is why the area was called a city within the city.
Currently the Finlayson area contains several notable IT and media businesses, including editorial offices and marketing services. A total of 140 companies offering a job to 3500 people.
Naturally, leisure services have also followed in the wake of other development. A multiplex cinema 10 screens was recently opened by Finnkino, and several restaurants cater to visitors, the best known among them being the Plevna with its microbrewery.
With its imortant concentration of IT and new media companies and in the future also health care centres, the Finlayson area is making a strong come-back as a focal point in the city.