Nõmme District




28.7 km2




Historical, Landscape and Urban Planning, Residential


Residential, Urban

Nõmme is one of the garden city areas of Tallinn. It is situated south-west of the city center and has an area of nearly 30 square kilometers. The population on the district is around 38,000. The area started to develop during the 19th century when it became a popular recreational area for the citizens of Tallinn. This prompted the creation of the first spa facilities. When the railroad to Paldiski was built the interested parties also lobbied for the creation of a stop at Nõmme. In 1873 the main landowner von Glehn started renting land for summer houses.

During the 20th century this summer house area gradually crew into a permanent settlement. This happened in part thanks to the industrial boom at the turn of the century when many people coming to find work in Tallinn settled in this area. The development was rapid – by 1917 the area registered as a hamlet and by 1926 it already had city rights. By 1938 it equal to cities like Pärnu, Narva or Viljandi. During these times several public buildings like schools, market, cinema, and administrative buildings were built at the heart of the area. The basis for the development were the close ties with the adjacent city of Tallinn – Tallin gives work for the inhabitants of Nõmme, and Nõmme has the recreational areas for the inhabitants of Tallinn. This symbiotic relationship gave rise to several infrastructure projects etc.

After the II World War Nõmme was incorporated into Tallinn as one of its suburbs but it kept its garden city atmosphere despite several apartment blocks and industrial entities built in the area during 1950s to 1980s. Most of the Nõmme area is a green area with single family homes. It has several parks and recreational areas, and the few industrial entities are mostly on the outskirts of the area. There are three cemeteries, eight schools, three libraries, three museums, a sports center, and several public institutions in the area. There are also several interesting historical buildings in the area like the 1930s modernist houses or interesting examples of modern housing architecture – the Hiiu Lõvi complex, the villa by Eek & Mutso Architects or the White house and Black House by Martin Aunin.