Waterfront Urban Development - A Network
of Cities in the Baltic Sea Region
As part of INTERREG II C, the project "Waterfront Urban
Development" focuses on the significance of inner-city
waterfront areas for the urban development. Of particular
priority is the preparation of pilot projects for the investment
areas in individual cities. "Waterfront Urban Development"
is strongly orientated towards implementation and also aims to organize
cooperation and exchange of experience among experts. Furthermore
it gives rise to one overriding goal on the project: to develop
a common strategy for urban planning based on the experience
gained in individual cities.
The HQE²R project is partially
funded by ECC under the 5th FP. The HQE²R project
aims at providing a global methodology for helping municipalities
and their local partners (such as public administration,
social owners, city planners, etc.) to move towards a sustainable
urban renewal or development, at both the neighbourhood
and the building levels.
The 3 main objectives of this European
Research and Demonstration project are:
• To provide and disseminate reproducible new methodologies
and new tools for a sustainable urban renewal or
development on both the neighbourhood and the building
- These tools and methodologies will be developed and
tested in close cooperation with 14 municipalities in 14 neighbourhoods
• To improve the quality of life in the neighbourhoods,
- by taking into account the inhabitants and users needs
in the 14 neighbourhood test-sites
- by improving the housing comfort and the quality of
the housing environment
• To integrate SD in urban
renewal projects and in buildings renovation, especially
- by saving, managing and recycling resources (water,
energy, materials, etc.)
- by a better use of the urban space (by limiting or managing
urban sprawl, by a better location of the urban functions)
ELSES - Evaluation of Local Socio-Economic Strategies
in Disadvantaged Urban Areas
ELSES is an international research
project funded by the European Commission, Directorate General
Research. The overall aim of the project (1.1.1998-31.12.1999)
has been to evaluate the impact of local socio-economic
development strategies as implemented in the six European
urban regeneration areas Glasgow-Govan, Duisburg-Marxloh,
Pomigliano d'Arco, Malmö-Rosengård, Leiden-Noord
The research aims have been:
- analysing socio-economic effects of local development strategies
as employed in urban regeneration areas in six European
understanding better how different institutional and organisational
structures and interrelationships condition the effectiveness
of local economic development strategies,
- identifying areas for improvement and designing effective
enhancing conceptual framework on the scope and relevance of
local economic development initiatives,
- conceptual and methodological work on constructing and integrating
data and indicator systems for monitoring locally based
economic regeneration approaches.
The cities are shrinking in the whole
world! The shrinking cities are culturally challenging
us. In the project shrinking cities architects,
researcher and artists investigate the lastest development
of Detroit, Ivanovo, Manchester/Liverpool and Halle/ Leipzig.
Re-Urban Mobil. Mobilising Re-Urbanisation
on condition of demographic change
Project duration October 2002 to September
2005; Coordination City of Leipzig, Department for
urban renewal; Supported by the European Commission , DG Research,
Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development, Key action
"City of Tomorrow and Cultural Heritage"
The aim of the project is to analyse re-urbanisation
potentials and obstacles of inner-city residential
areas and to develop instruments, incentives and strategies
for an appropriate and long-term use of these areas taking
into consideration changing demographic preconditions.
Re-urbanisation is meant to be a comprehensive,
socially integrative strategy aimed at the development
of the housing and living conditions in the entire core
city, in particular its historical residential areas adjacent to
the city centres. While the traditional approach towards
urban regeneration and renewal was still focussed on urban
growth, at present the ongoing demographic changes (low
fertility rates, smaller households, aging) have to be considered
as a new and decisive determinant.
Main outcomes of the project in scientific
and practical terms will be a modified theoretical model
and methodical approach of re-urbanisation, an "Environmental
Atlas" and future scenarios for inner-city neighbourhoods,
legal and economic instruments as well as tested communication
and promotion strategies for re-urbanisation, a toolbox
applicable in different European contexts, an information
and monitoring system comprising small-scale data on different
issues concerning inner-city areas and an the formation of an international
expert team on questions of re-urbanisation.
OECD, Territorial Development (1998): Integrating
Distressed Urban Areas
From the cover: "Distressed urban areas threaten
social cohesion in urban regions, the very centre of
our economies… This problem can be traced to no single
cause; rather it represents a combination of environmental,
economic, social and cultural circumstances that take spatial
form in different parts of inner cities and suburbs.
Traditional policies have no succeeded
in halting the downward spiral that affects these
areas because they were unable to address the complex
and area-based nature of the problem at the local level. The aim
of this study is to describe this phenomenon and analyse
policies implemented in OECD countries, so as to come up
with multisectoral policies that are better suited to
the problems they have to address.
Policy objectives include attracting
investment, creating jobs, rebuilding sound economic
and social foundations and, more generally, combating
the isolation from which distressed urban areas suffer. Different
levels of government, civic society and the private sector
all have roles to play. There is an urgent need for integrative
policies based on reinforcement of the local dimension
and on partnerships that bring all the actors together."
Contents: patterns of deprivation,
mechanisms and cycles of decline, rising economic
and social costs, emerging trends in urban policy, conclusions
and new policy directions.
"Mobility, Urban Planning & Sustainable
Development Strategies for Neighbourhood Renovation
- How Urban Planning can match Agenda 21"
3rd International HQE²R Workshop,
8 - 9 - 10 September 2003, Teatro Bibiena - Mantova
For more Information see http://hqe2r.cstb.fr/
Agenda 21 for Vienna’s borough “Neubau”
Projects and initiatives for the Vienna district “Neubau” will be developed with the
help of inhabitants ideas under the title agenda
vienna sieben in the next years. Different problem fields of town development
as for example the lack of green spaces, traffic load, questions of the
integration of migrants, shopping facilities or children’s care will be
discussed in project groups. The conjointly compiled proposals for solutions
will be suggested to the public administration for their implementation.
This is made possible by the public participation in the development
process which increases the acceptance of political decisions.
www.bbr.bund.de - The German Federal
Office for Building and Regional Planning
www.urbed.co.uk - The Urban and Economic
Development Group - a British not-for-profit urban
by Patrycja Bielawska - Roepke (IOER)
Urban Wastelands of Today – Ecological Recreation
Areas of Tomorrow?
Under the current conditions
of negative growth in many European cities planners are looking for concepts
for the use of urban wastelands supporting a sustainable city development.
The idea of integrating wastelands into urban green structures comes more
and more into the focus of planning institutions. Therefore new visions
are searched for and a lot of questions arise. What would be better: to
design wastelands or to leave them to natural succession? Do they need to
be protected or will especially the (spontaneous) use be an interesting
solution? Would habitat management be necessary and how far do creative
changes make sense? The ideal case would be the combination of nature protection
ideas and provisions for leisure and recreation. If a wide variety of nature
types in the city is the aim, then succession stages of wilderness, as different
as possible, should be saved or developed. For nature experiences all stages
of vegetation can have a specific charm, which is given mainly by structure
of vegetation, configuration of habitat, flora and fauna as well as by size
and location of the wasteland in the city (Schemel 2002).
Ecological and Social Value of Urban Wastelands
Urban wastelands in many European cities are the only large areas where
undisturbed development of wilderness was possible for years and so often
they have a high ecological and social value. Even if extremely anthropogenic
stamped, they do not seldom impress by their habitat and species diversity,
as well as through rarities of flora and fauna (Dettmar 1995, Hamann 1998,
Köhler 1998, Kowarik 1993, Rebele & Dettmar 1996, Reidl 1998, Wittig
& Zucchi 1993 among others). Furthermore the spontaneous urban vegetation
is suitable for recreation, nature experience and environmental education
(Opaschowski 2002, Schemel 2002, Herbst 2003 among others). Urban wastelands
are liked by a lot of people and sometimes are really searched, because
they are areas without control and areas were nothing can be destroyed (Freytag
2003). Caused by human activities, special locations developed there, which
are – because of their structure and of their ecological situation – very
similar to natural habitats (Rebele & Dettmar 1996). Therefore they
can serve as retreats, substitute or stepping stone habitats for a lot of
plant and animal species (Dettmar 1995). Even if there are mostly ruderal
vegetation with euryoecious species and neophytes, especially brownfields
can belong to the most valuable places in the city for habitat protection
and species protection (Dettmar 1995), caused by the dynamic and the habitat
diversity on these areas. Depending on the length of fallow period and
the intensity of current use, different stages of vegetation development
dominate. Each stage of vegetation development gives home for special animal
species and offers particular possibilities for nature experiences.
The course of succession as well as the composition of plant and animal
species is influenced by climate, kind and intensity of former and actual
use, neighbourhood effects, degree of soil sealing, location factors as well
as by location and extend of the urban waste land (Dettmar 1995, Rebele &
Dettmar 1996). Referring to succession of vegetation roughly six types of
urban wastelands can be distinguished (Rebele & Dettmar 1996, Schulte
et al. 1993): 1) Vegetation-less Wastelands (mostly vegetation-less or soil-sealed;
seldom main-habitat for animals, only feed or sunning places), 2) Young Wastelands
(< 3 years fallow period, open fragmentary ruderal pioneer populations
with short-lived, annual species), 3) Older Wastelands (3-10 years, closing
vegetation cover, increasing proportion of persistent ruderal vegetation,
dry meadows, single bushes and groves higher than 5 m), 4) Old Wastelands
(10-50 years, mainly persistent species, ruderal tall forbs, dry meadows,
bushes, single groves higher than 10 m), 5) Wastelands with spontaneous
woods (> 50 years, dense groves, if not completely covered highly growing
herb layer typical, characteristic wood) and 6) Complex Wastelands (different
ages, mosaic of succession stages, valuable structures, because of habitat
variety, characteristic border-biocoenosis).
the planning point of view, urban wastelands are special transitional stages
of urban land development that begin with the loss of the previous usage
and end with new sustainable usages. They represent no independent category
of areas in the city, but a special state, which every used area in the
city can reach. In Germany ecological and social qualities of wastelands
generally are not considered with priority during the planning process.
Moreover, successions on urban wastelands cause acceptance problems, because
the succession areas – valuable for nature protection and nature experience
– often do not correspond to aesthetic requests of city dwellers. A long
time reuse schemes continued to be dominated by traditional attitudes favouring
“revitalisation” for new economical enterprises and developments. Today affected
communities show a growing interest in integrating wastelands into the landscape
(Kochan et al. 2000, Mathey et al. 1999, 2001). Solutions for nature-conservation
are being given ever greater attention by the political establishment as
witnessed by the German law of nature protection. Contained therein is the
recommendation that non-revivable derelict industrial premises on the edge
of and outside communities are to be renatured and integrated into the landscape
(BNatSchG 2002). The trend to include urban wastelands systematically into
the green systems of cities with the aim to a sustainable urban renovation
is relatively new. So approaches of reusing urban wastelands for recreational
and nature protection purposes as well as their inclusion into urban landscapes
or habitat connectivity systems in a lot of cases are developed in a complicated
way. However, what often prevents this being put into practice is the non-availability
of respective areas as well as the lack of suitable basic data for planning
and of concepts fitting the special problems. The urban planning and the
planning basics, as wasteland registers, usually focus on economical marketing.
A collection of ecological parameters of urban wastelands is done only with
regard to special projects. Urban habitat mappings in which derelict premises
are covered in detail are the exception (Kochan et al. 2000, Mathey et
al. 1999, 2001, 2003).
Meanwhile a lot of communities created and pursued interesting solutions
combining nature conservation, recreational functions and utilisation.
• Some cities or regions used or use the redevelopment
of their brownfields for increasing the proportion and the quality of urban
green spaces and at the same time enhancing the whole urban green system
of the city (German Ruhr Area and cities like Antwerp, Sofia, Zurich).
• In some cases – e. g. Wismar, Germany – programmes
are being devised in consultation with the owners. The implementations
are supported by the municipality by providing Employment Scheme staff
and equipment (public-private partnership). A number of development plans
have been drawn up for such sites, including planning schemes for property
developers. Often, for the most part no maintenance is envisaged, exceptions
being an initial sowing to ameliorate the soil and the maintenance of bat
dwellings. Derelict factory premises were soon in use again and valuable
sites within these complexes are mostly used for compen-sating measures,
though they are not exclusively given over to nature conservation (Kochan
et al. 2000).
• In Wolfen (Germany) "revitalisation" of diverse industrial
wastelands has been effected whilst at the same time steppingstone biotopes
have been preserved with the aim of incorporating them into a broad band
of greenbelts. For "revitalisation" purposes, derelict municipal industrial
premises are being held in readiness for developers by being ecologically
maintained. Boundary sections only are cut at most twice a year, with areas
of higher growth being left as retreats for fauna. Accompanying public
relation measures were undertaken to support
the acceptance. This approach has two advantages.
Firstly, the site can be reutilised at any time and, secondly, it is 100%
available for nature conservation purposes in the meantime (temporary nature
conservation). This appears to be a promising way of using biotopes as stepping
stones for interconnecting biotope systems even where it is intended to
shows likewise offer an opportunity to combine landscape and nature conservation
with economical tasks. This option has already been taken up in Großenhain
and Rostock (Germany). In the latter instance, it can be envisaged incorporating
derelict industrial premises into an interconnecting biotope system.
• Examples for using the wilderness of urban wastelands
as aesthetical-ecological elements are the „jardin en mouvement“ in Paris,
where different stages of wildness and the dispersion of plants are shown
(Freytag 2003) and the “industrial wood” on the site of a former coal mine
“Zeche Zollverein” in Essen (German Ruhr Area) where a succession area could
develop, but it also is designed to keep the site continually usable (Dettmar
• For urban wastelands, which can not be kept as green
spaces at long term sight, temporary solutions are suitable, which meet
aesthetical demands of dwellers and offer possibilities for recreation and
nature experiences on public green spaces. For a site situated in the densely
populated eastern part of Leipzig (Germany) the owner used the opportunity
to knock down the ruins, since the demolition and redesigning was supported
by the municipality using founding for redevelopment (Stadt Leipzig 2002).
A contract between owner and municipality guarantees the public usability
as well as the maintenance paid by city administrationfor the next eight years. For the site of a former
manufactory in Dresden (Germany) residents initiated a temporary use as
a leisure park, youth playground and micro-museum. In agreement with the
owner this area, foreseen for housing, can be used as a green oasis for
the next two years (Mathey et al. 2003).
It is interesting, that this upgrading from urban wasteland into green
areas does not only effect ecological and social, but also economical values.
In many cases owners of neighbouring build-ings are motivated to revaluate
their houses (Mathey et al. 2003).
Conclusions and Outlook
Under the conditions of shrinking, chances arise for restructuring green
systems of cities and connecting them to the surrounding landscape. Meaningful
incorporation of urban wastelands into the green structures of urban spaces
applying the principle of interconnecting biotopes, provides opportunities
for an ecological upgrading of former industrialised regions (soft site
factors) and hence for the elimination of local disadvantages. Urban wastelands
are especially interesting for urban green systems, because with their various
stages of vegetation they provide a brought spectrum of urban nature types.
Therefore urban wastelands should not only be kept for infill development,
but their potentials for recreation and nature experience should be used
and spontaneous use should be accepted, if there are no accident hazards
on the site. It is appropriate to take serious thought about temporary usages
as green spaces and parks for a limited time. Though especially in densely
populated urban quarters with green and nature experience deficits, such
sites are quickly accepted by the residents. Even on reused sites succession
can be accepted. Thereby it is suggested, to raise the acceptance of urban
wastelands respectively succession areas by partial upgrading. In this context
it is deciding, how far the occurrence and the preservation of neophytes
and pervasive plants will be accepted and if it will be possible to realise
dynamic land-use-concepts like the principle of rotation. The aims for the
urban wasteland development should be set up in consideration of respective
city’s specific open space needs, scenic conditions as well as general green
development strategies. It is important in the process to deal with existing
structures, buildings, flora and fauna in a differentiated manner even if
forms of utilisation are not wholly called into question. For the systematic
development of urban wastelands in a city an inventory and a systematisation
of their potentials are necessary. Based on the specific aims of the city,
a distinction has to be undertaken between urban wastelands suitable for
constructional-infrastructural revitalisation and such sites which - due
to their location and potentials for green system - shall fulfil open space
functions in future. At least the different departments
of municipal administration have to come to a common strategic concept. So
a differentiated use of urban wastelands can contribute to an increasing
quality of settlement structures and thereby to a better quality of urban
Dr. rer. nat. Juliane Mathey, Dipl.-Ing (FH) Birgit Kochan,
Dipl-Ing. (FH) Sylke Stutzriemer
Department of Regional Development and Landscape Ecology
of Institute of Ecological and Regional Development (IOER), Dresden
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