The aim of the project was to review Urban Fringes policies, develop a common approach and a set of policy guidelines to influence regional, national and EU policies in tackling issues of governance, spatial planning and exploring potential for economic growth in Urban Fringes, and to contribute in a balanced way to city region competitiveness.
The cities and urban fringes could not be considered in isolation, and therefore there was a need for greater integration between various policies and programmes at the local, regional and national level to make the Urban Fringes more attractive.
Further aims were to:
- Provide a common platform for EU experts and institutions to exchange their experiences, strategies, policies in dealing Urban Fringes and provide recommendations to test some of the innovative approaches to harness the potential of Urban Fringes and influence policy
- Analyse the challenges faced by the Urban Fringes and the contribution it made towards the city region development
- Create a web based long term sustainable network of experts, practitioners, businesses, institutions, community development organizations and linking it into what is existing
- Add value to the Urban Fringes and increase its importance to promote the environmental quality and highlight the benefits it brought to the communities
- Improve community skills in Urban Fringes and empower them to develop rural services enabling them to take part in planning & decisions making;
The Urban Fringes are the areas in between rural and urban areas with multifunctional spaces and complex structures. Urban Fringes often suffer declining biodiversity, deteriorating water quality, low green space value, they are split administratively, with fragmented governance structures and they often have poor accessibility and wide social inequalities.
The improvement of Urban Fringes greenspaces would provide a sense of place and ownership to the communities, add value to Urban Fringes environmental quality and help in maintaining biodiversity.
City regions are of increasing interest to EU policy makers as a source of increased EU competitiveness as competitive spaces in the global economy.