Here you will find all the information on CIVITAS PROSPERITY’s actions that are posted during the project time. You are very welcome to scan through the articles and follow the development of the project and each partner’s actions!

SUMP Ambassadors Speak Out!

Sharing opinions and connecting with others is important, as it helps to offer support to local and national authorities to improve the quality and uptake of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans. CIVITAS PROSPERITY’s approach is to focus its support on connecting, rather than collecting. Hence, the project has introduced SUMP Ambassadors, who are enthusiastic personalities willing to share their interesting stories, findings and lessons learnt from their personal experience with SUMPs.

Our SUMP Ambassadors engage with the people, because they have something interesting to tell. They do not only share their personal view on what they like most in their own city, but helping to understand the starting point of their respective SUMP, how it works and what’s the main focus of it. Because you can have a great SUMP, but if people don’t know about it then it does no good.

Our SUMP Ambassadors have a reason to talk, and they are able to equip others with insights and interesting stories, such as the work with oppositions and how they were able to overcome barriers. But also on how they organised the public participation process.

Our SUMP Ambassadors help to empower other cities that are willing to improve the quality and uptake of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans. They offer a clear message on why SUMPs are so important, hence they motivate others to take the next step as well. These personalities provide insights on the driving forces and barriers to develop such an SUMP, or what was and is their role in the development of it, may it be as a politician or SUMP cooordinator.

The first interviews are now online on the CIVITAS PROSPERITY website, and more are to come!

Image: Created by Makyzz - Freepik.com

CIVITAS PROSPERITY Training Activities Kicked-Off

Improving capacities, knowledge and understanding by means of training activities is at the core of the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project. As the famous German neurologist Gerald Hüther once said, “Being creative is not always inventing something completely new. Rather, it is more a matter of connecting existing knowledge that was previously separate in new ways. From this process new knowledge and know-how is created.”

The first two training events took place in Kaunas and Limassol, and seven more are to come in 2018.

 

Training and capacity building activities within CIVITAS PROSPERITY are based on a sound user needs analysis and are developed and delivered mostly by representatives of cities that have themselves developed SUMPs. This is important because cities themselves are well placed to understand the challenges and develop solutions to these challenges in implementing SUMPs. Complementary to them, other project partners bring valuable new ideas, as well as their knowledge of practice to put the cities’ own experience in context.

All training activities are well balanced between theory and practical units and make use of existing training material and tools, but also use newly developed ones. The material and tools are country specific, with detailed consideration of how to use the EU Guidelines in the local context, and they build on local needs and concerns. Additionally, and to overcome the language barrier, these events are taking place in local language and consecutive interpreting into English is provided for experts from other countries.

 

The first training took place in Kaunas, Lithuania, from 20 November – 24 November 2017. Thirteen cities took part including Jonova, the PROSPERITY partner city, and Kaunas itself.  There was a lot of interest and active participation because SUMPs are very much on the agenda in Lithuania at the present time: the national government has published its own SUMP guidance document, there is money available from the national level for SUMP development and implementation funds are also likely to be made available. 

The training was opened with a presentation from the national ministry, and also featured presentations by Kaunas and by the capital city Vilnius about their own SUMPs, which generated a lot of discussion and debate about, for example, data requirements and modelling for SUMPs, and choice of SUMP measures.  With the visiting experts the trainees covered Communication and Stakeholder Involvement, Monitoring and Evaluation, Land Use and Mobility Management in SUMPs, and the Urban Transport Roadmap Tool.  The quality of the interaction and engagement with the participants was extremely high both in the presentation sessions and in the interactive exercises.  For example, participants were required to design in outline a participation and stakeholder engagement strategy, and some excellent ideas were discussed.  The Champion City Vitoria Gasteiz gave a presentation on their approach to monitoring and evaluation in SUMP which also stimulated a great deal of discussion. Overall a great deal of positive feedback was received.

 

The second training took place in Limassol, Cyprus, from 27 November – 01 December 2017. Cypriots are very car-oriented;  e.g. in  the Limassol district 90 % of all trips are made by car.  Public Transport is at low operating level, and cycling and walking are regarded dangerous (this is the vicious circle thought:  due to many cars it too dangerous for walking and cycling, so we keep on using the car…)  The quality of urban space and - in general-  liveability conditions – especially in the cities - suffer from this dominance of the car. 

There are only four cities in Cyprus. Nicosia has a SUMP since 2010, whereas the other cities are starting, with the support of the Ministry and EU structural funds.

Limassol is the Cyprus city partner. They also hosted the national training. Even though the participants’ numbers varied from day to day, the attendees were very positive about what they learned from the targeted training topics; SUMP for medium and small sized cities, communication and stakeholder involvement, evaluation and monitoring and working with the Transport Road maps tool. They stated: “it made them think on a deeper level about SUMP". 

Also the coaching session –  partly attended by the Mayor of Limassol – made some challenges clear; especially that SUMP is not only a technical exercise, but needs political and public support for a true and urgent change.

 

CIVITAS PROSPERITY is providing a total of nine training events in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, Romania and a joint training in Slovenia and Croatia. You can find here more information about the upcoming national training events and practical information.

CIVITAS PROSPERITY seminar in Katowice

On 28 November 2017, the CIVITAS PROSPERITY partners City of Katowice and SMG EKSPERT from Krakow, organised a seminar on Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans within the framework of the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project. As the overall objective of the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project is to support local and national authorities in improving quality and developing Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans, different local and regional stakeholders from Silesia region were invited for the seminar.

On 28 November 2017, the CIVITAS PROSPERITY partners City of Katowice and SMG EKSPERT from Krakow (acting as a National Focal Point), organised a seminar on Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans within the framework of the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project. As the overall objective of the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project is to support local and national authorities in improving quality and developing Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans, different local and regional stakeholders from Silesia region were invited for the seminar.

The seminar had a main objective to familiarise participants with the SUMP-concept, as a new, strategic plan and approach, which responds to the needs of urban mobility for a better quality of life, building on existing planning practices, taking into account integration, social participation and evaluation principles.

The seminar was officially opened by Mr Bogumil Sobula, First Vice President of the City of Katowice. Afterwards, the participants of the seminar were able to get acquainted with, among others, the presentation on Katowice's current problems and investment intentions in the field of transport and urban mobility, the methodology and main considerations of Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning, assumptions of the so-called Mobility Plans for companies and institutions and a summary of the European Mobility Week organised in Poland in 2017. The latter was presented by Ms Maria Perkuszewska, representative of Polish Ministry of Infrastructure, who are also partners in the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project.

In the second part of the seminar, representatives of the Krakow Municipality and the Board of Municipal Infrastructure and Transport in Krakow, talked about the development of modern public transport systems in Krakow, activities for popularisation of cycling and the public bike rental system, as well as mobility of children and youth (based on experiences in the European STARS project).

The seminar was attended mainly by representatives of the Ministry of Infrastructure, local and regional authorities and municipalities, universities and transport operators from the Silesian region.

The next main event to be organised in Katowice, as part of the city's participation in the CIVITAS PROSPERITY project, will be a training course dedicated to representatives of local governments dealing with mobility planning and transport systems, which is planned for 9-12 April 2018.

Urban mobility planning and policy - best practice from EU for third countries

In recent years, there has been a growing interest from third countries to learn from European experience in the area of sustainable urban mobility. In response to this, the European Commission's Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport has just published two booklets.

European Urban Mobility: Policy Context

For decades the European Commission has been stimulating the development and application of new sustainable urban mobility planning approaches and innovative solutions through its policies, through the European Structural and Investment Funds and through its research and innovation funding programmes. Europe has unique and widely respected experience on sustainable urban mobility. The European Commission would like to ensure that this experience is shared with stakeholders across the world. This booklet presents a compact over view of the main features of the European Union's urban mobility policy, related policies, underlying  trends, funding instruments and possibilities for cooperation.

This publication has been prepared principally for the benefit of cities and stakeholders in third countries. It provides an overview of EU urban mobility policy and expertise, with links to specific policy areas (energy, environment, climate change, employment and growth).

To read this booklet, click here

 

Sustainable Urban Mobility: European Policy, Practice, and Solutions

EU experience and expertise in the area of urban mobility (particularly regarding energy efficiency and climate change) is available to support sustainable mobility in countries outside the EU, facing similar issues. An important concept in addressing the challenges related to (mainly) urban areas, is that of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs), which are the focus of an annex of the Urban Mobility Package. The concept of SUMPs relates to a functional urban area and its surroundings, focussing on the people within this area rather than directly on the transport, with the aim of creating a shift towards cleaner and more sustainable transport modes and alternatives to car use and ownership.

This booklet addresses city stakeholders in third countries, who are directly or indirectly involved in urban mobility planning. It showcases relevant EU urban mobility know-how, in order to provide replicable solutions to urban mobility issues.

To read this booklet, click here

CIVITAS Prosperity local/national partnerships National Task Forces to develop or sharpen SUMP Supporting Programmes

In the CIVITAS Prosperity project 11 countries are working on the development and implementation of a tailor-made national SUMP promotion programme.  In the past half-year, the so-called ‘National Focal Points’ in these countries made good progress in creating a national SUMP network and SUMP Promo programme. To make this successful and get the commitment of the responsible higher level government, 11 National Task Forces were launched. 

The number one priority of these Task Forces is to build or improve the National SUMP (framework) programmes and stimulate the uptake of SUMPS in cities, taking into account country specific cultural differences and ambitions and supporting capacities (such as skills, finances, and institutional). The Task Forces also will decide on the legal character, the necessary cooperation of actors, and important steps like the overall quality control of SUMPs and expert certification programmes.  All this work will be targeted and build into a stepwise development process. How fast and hard they work may differ from country to country. It is Prosperity’s ambition to make the Task Forces the ‘manpower’ behind these SUMP Promo processes.  Some of the Prosperity countries are more advanced:   

  • Slovenia already has 2 Task Forces, and the Federal Ministry is very committed to learn from the experience of two decades of Flanders’ SUMP Framework programme. 
  • Germany gathered a lot of governmental, academic and private expertise in the Task Force. They will discuss and decide on how to reform their VEP (Verkehr Entwicklungs Plan) guidelines into a more SUMP oriented manual.
  • Sweden already has its overarching ‘TRAST Strategic Plan’ guidance document and numerous in depth guiding documents to support cities’ efforts in SUMPs. Nevertheless, the National Transport Administration (Trafikverket) is interested in Prosperity’s Task Force approach and will launch it on a voluntary basis (as a 12th country). Trafikverket considers it a chance for better adaptation of the many legislative directives, and better cooperation between the different policy levels. The final aim is — completely in line with the TRAST strategy — to create a bridge between different community planning sectors and levels. A summary of the TRAST Strategic can be downloaded here. 
  • Belgium has a complex federal structure. The Belgian Task Force operates under the BEPOMM (Belgian Network on Mobility Management and Sustainable Mobility) structure. The three regional transport departments are part of it, and they exchange experience and mutually improve their strategies. The SPW – Service Public Wallon (the Walloon Transport Department) – recently published an overview of SUMPs in 8 of their biggest cities. Prosperity considers making this brochure (currently in French) available in English.