Standards and practices of spatial and urban planning within Germany and the European Union are important topics for Spatial Planners in Serbia. In December, a delegation of four Spatial Planners from Serbia, members of the Serbian Association of Spatial Planners (APPS) and the Faculty of Geography of the University of Belgrade, participated in an exchange of experiences with German Planners on a trip to Bonn and Düsseldorf. The trip was organized in cooperation with the German Association for Urban, Regional and Spatial Planning (SRL). Barbara Wolf and Michael Stein, both members of the SRL, represented the German Association through their active participation in the exchange of experiences.
During a meeting with researchers in the field of spatial planning at the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs, and Spatial Development (BBSR) in Bonn, Spatial Planning Policies in Germany and Serbia were presented and discussed. Further important topics of the meeting were European funding programmes for spatial development, like for instance the transnational cooperation programme for the Danube region, as well as conducted research by the Institute for the adaption to climate change in spatial development planning in Germany.
The adaption to flood risks in urban planning was one of the topics during the visit of the delegation to the Department of Urban Planning in Düsseldorf. Since the flooding in Serbia in May 2014, flood protection has become a renewed importance as a topic for spatial and urban planners in Serbia. Flood protection measures on planning level in Düsseldorf were presented and discussed and compared to the experiences from Serbia. The flood protection measures taken into account for the elaboration of spatial and urban regulation plans in Düsseldorf are based on the EU Directive 2007/60/EC on the assessment and management of flood risks that has been transposed into German law. According to the provisions of the law, flood risk areas, as well as flood retention areas have to be defined in spatial and urban plans and are subject to special restrictions.
Another topic of the meeting in Düsseldorf was the integration of environmental protection goals in spatial and urban planning processes. The planners discussed the differences and similarities in the legal framework and practice of implementation of Environmental Impact Assessments (and Strategic Environmental Impact Assessments) for Detailed, General and Regional Regulation Plans in Germany and in Serbia.
The third topic of the visit to the Urban Planning Department in Düsseldorf was the management of two projects for urban development in the areas Rath/Mörsenbroich and Wersten/Holthausen within the city of Düsseldorf. The projects are part of the funding programme “Social City”, financed partly from national, state and local level and based on a Strategy for Integrated Neighbourhood Development. The programme “Social City” is one the national urban development programmes in Germany. Its goal is the stabilisation and valorization of deprived urban neighbourhoods. The development and implementation of Integrated Urban Development Strategies (IUDS) has been one of the main topics of the project of “Strengthening of local land management in Serbia”. The elaboration of such strategies serves as a basis for the application for different funding programmes for urban development in Germany and other countries of the European Union (national or European programmes).
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