Umeå and Riga to be European capitals of culture
Officials in the northern Swedish town of Umeå think the population could almost double because it will be European Capital of Culture next year. It is sharing the title with the Latvian capital Riga, which is also preparing dozens of events during 2014.
Umeå2014, the organising body for the year of events, says it is going to host two seminars in the first week of July about culture-driven growth for the town of 110,000 people.
“We don’t want to create sparkling events that everybody will forget once 2015 comes along. We believe that we have to cooperate here in the north,” Marit Andersson, media communicator of Umeå2014, tells The Local.
Putting the town on Europe’s cultural map could make it an attractive town to live in, the organizers say. Umeå will be cooperating in the project with the towns Piteå and Örnsköldsvik.
“The capital culture project is part of our desire to reach 200,000 inhabitants in Umeå by 2050,” Andersson says. “As a whole we want to develop the city, and it is a long way to go.”
[pictured: Leap of joy; photoby Sara Ingman/imagebank.sweden.se]