Traffic, with its environmental impacts, is increasingly becoming a key problem not only for urban areas but also for rural regions with highly vulnerable landscapes. This is a great concern particularly in eastern European areas where the number of cars per capita has only recently begun to rise sharply. Moreover, the ecological situation is aggravated by the use of outdated and environmentally harmful technologies and the fact that regional and local planning has not been thoroughly carried out in the former GDR. In this situation, comprehensive regional and local planning focusing on the environmental problems caused by traffic is urgently needed to encourage environmentally sound development. Since a new structural approach will be needed, this will be shown with two examples in Lübben and Lübbenau.
In a first step, the existing regional and local planning policies in the region of Lübben and Lübbenau will be analysed, focusing on their environmental effects. The second step includes the following main activities:
- models and recommendations for further planning measures,
- an ad hoc working programme to reduce environmentally harmful impacts and create a more humane situation for the people in the less populated areas.
At this point European partnership cities and regions with similar experiences will be involved in the project. In a third step, experience gained from the second step will be implemented by a set of measures with model character to illustrate the project's aims and to stimulate new patterns of regional and local planning. The project will be finalised by an evaluation of measures taken and their effectiveness. The final report and the results will be disseminate to encourage other rural areas to provide and support humane living conditions.