The HEAT project, realized by partners from Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Sweden addresses the problem of fragmented urban planning and cycling infrastructure. The main reasons are limited participation of citizens and other sectors in planning processes. Moreover, the initiatives that aim at promoting biking in the cities are often fragmented, full of gaps - thus, with low impact. The problem is relevant because of not only environmental concerns but also of health and social issues.
Current consulting practices fail to involve city inhabitants and other sectors in urban planning process to express their needs. People are experts in their city and their view can considerably enrich urban plans. At the same time, urban environment can fulfil health, social and educational functions.
To improve urban planning practices in CB region, HEAT project proposes to bring city inhabitants and regional and municipal officials to the centre of urban planning by developing new and effective ways of consultation. People will take part in interactive workshops and campaigns where they will be able to create their vision of biking infrastructure they wish for. At the same time, an economic analysis of increased biking will provide an argument for future investments. Stakeholders and local and regional decision makers will be actively involved in these processes.
The project consortium consists of seven partners from four countries:
- Baltic Region Healthy Cities Association, Finland
- Council of Southwest Finland - Service Centre for Sustainable Development and Energy of Southwest Finland (VALONIA), Finland
- Turku University of Applied Sciences, Finland
- Jurmala City Council, Latvia
- Institute of Baltic Studies, Estonia
- Tartu City Government, Estonia
- Cykelfrämjandet, Sweden
The project started on 1 April 2018 and continues until 31 March 2021
The project is co-financed by the Central Baltic Programme 2014-2020.
The overall objective of the project is to contribute to the planning of healthier, more active and inclusive urban areas in CB region, in which biking is a safe, popular and acceptable mode of transport. To make this happen, Participatory Concepts for development of biking infrastructure in pilot cities and region of Southwest Finland will be developed and pilot actions will be conducted.
Thanks to cross-border cooperation, partners will learn from each other, share experiences and support each other with their specific expertise. Project results will be widely distributed in CB region and beyond