50 years of regional planning in Bavaria: Regional planning must become more democratic and capable of action!

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The "Ways to a better LEP" initiative is calling on Hubert Aiwanger, Minister of Economic Affairs, to introduce regional planning that pays greater attention to nature conservation and environmental protection and to develop regional planning associations (RPVs) into regional parliaments and agencies for sustainable regional development.

© Ariane Jungwirth

© Ariane Jungwirth

Last May, the state parliament passed a partial update of the state development program (LEP) with the votes of the CSU and Free Voters. There was no revision adapted to the current challenges; an outdated concept with a few, often contradictory additions was adopted.
The initiative "Ways to a better LEP", which includes 15 spatial academies, chambers and associations, is therefore using the ceremony to mark the 50th anniversary of regional planning in Bavaria on Thursday, November 9, to congratulate. However, not without calling for state and regional planning that respects planetary boundaries and paves the way for a sustainably sufficient, climate-neutral and therefore future-proof Bavaria. In order to achieve this, this important instrument should above all be upgraded from an ordinance to a law and better linked to the Bavarian Climate Protection Act. Just like the LEP, future regional plans should also be developed in an open, learning process. Citizens' councils, citizens' expert opinions and real laboratories in the regions can contribute to this. The RPVs should be upgraded to directly elected regional parliaments and contribute to the implementation of projects through active regional management.

Richard Mergner, Chairman of BUND Naturschutz in Bayern e.V.: "The LEP is a central lever for tackling the major challenges concretely and locally throughout Bavaria: the climate crisis, species extinction, land consumption, sustainable agriculture, better mobility and much more. Unfortunately, the LEP in its current form does not meet these challenges and urgently requires a complete overhaul. It should be incorporated into a law right away in order to set binding targets. Land consumption, for example, can continue unchecked at least into the next electoral term. The long-term target of a maximum of five hectares per day, which was only very vaguely targeted in the 2018 coalition agreement, is only 'aimed for' in the new coalition agreement by 2030, with no concrete measures or instruments. Curbing land consumption must finally be enshrined in law!"

Prof. Lydia Haack, President of the Bavarian Chamber of Architects: "Our initiative is ready to work in an open-ended, transparent and truly participatory process to make Bavaria fit for the future."

Robert Neuberger, Chairman of the German Academy for Urban and Regional Planning (DASL e.V. Landesgruppe Bayern): "Regional planning should specifically preserve and promote Bavaria's specific cultures and landscapes. It should also be understood as a social project, must guarantee equal living conditions, protect existing milieus and at the same time offer pioneers new spatial opportunities. Experimental residential and commercial construction is just as important as the multiple use of indoor and outdoor spaces or innovative concepts for agricultural structures. It is important that people start talking to each other again - through round tables, citizens' councils, citizens' reports, regional ideas workshops and future labs or strategy competitions."

Prof. Dr. Manfred Miosga, President of Bayerische Akademie Ländlicher Raum ALR e.V.: "All of this is associated with considerable personnel costs and additional funding. Unfortunately, the regional planning departments at the governments have already been completely understaffed for years. This means that the objectives of the LEP cannot be implemented effectively. We need staffing and material resources for regional planning that are qualitatively and quantitatively adapted to the significantly increased requirements - both at the governments and the offices of the regional planning associations."

The "Ways to a better LEP" initiative includes

  • ARL Academy for Spatial Development in the Leibniz Association LAG Bayern,
  • Bavarian Academy for Rural Areas,
  • Bavarian Chamber of Architects,
  • Bavarian Chamber of Civil Engineers,
  • Bavarian State Association for the Preservation of Local Heritage,
  • Association of German Architects in Bavaria,
  • Association of German Landscape Architects in Bavaria,
  • BUND Nature Conservation in Bavaria e.V.,
  • CIPRA Germany e.V.,
  • DASL German Academy for Urban and Regional Planning e.V. Bavarian regional group,
  • KLJB Catholic Rural Youth Movement of Bavaria,
  • KLB Catholic Rural People's Movement Bavaria,
  • VBI Verband Beratender Ingenieure LV Bayern e.V.,
  • VzSB Association for the Protection of the Mountain World e.V.,
  • SRL Association for Urban, Regional and State Planning e.V. RG Bavaria,
  • Contributing professorships of the TU Munich

Letter to Minister Hubert Aiwanger

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