New instruments to evaluate the impacts of housing, industry and retail projects at a regional level. A contribution to the field of sustainable land management.


Status: Project completed
End of project period: 31.10.2014



Both settlement development and land use are increasingly determined by tangible projects such as new housing areas, industrial parks or retail parks. Beyond their local effects, these projects have great structural impacts on regional settings. During their realisation, not only formal planning instruments are used. Negotiation processes between politicians, planners and representatives of the economy are of growing importance. These negotiation processes, however, are often characterised by a spatially and functionally restricted consciousness for problems as well as limited competences. As a result, the manifold effects of (large scale) projects often remain unconsidered or not sufficiently considered. Focussing on sustainable land development, those projects carry the risk for ill-conceived decisions.   

This issue sat the starting point for RegioProjektCheck (RPC). The project aimed at facilitating an early stage assessment and appraisal of settlement projects and their consequences. The objective was not to assess isolated functional questions in detail, but rather to review ecological, economic, and social aspects in an integrated way; particularly focussing on effects beyond the administrative borders of a single municipality. To achieve quick and efficient assessments, a computer based “tool-set” will be developed and provided. At an early stage of planning activities, this tool-set allowed to display the various and complex positive and negative effects of such developments, as well as their interconnections and side-effects.

Often, the stakeholders’ views were dominated by particular interests. RegioProjektCheck sought to expand these narrow perspectives in favour of a comprehensive, problem oriented decision-making based on clear assessment criteria. The understanding of decision makers for short-, mid- and long term effects of projects was improved, in order to provide a contribution to sustainable land management.