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Sustainable City Planning

In Durban, it is a particular challenge to take into account climate change aspects in city planning; many other needs seem to be more urgent: the reduction of unemployment, poverty, lack of education and low environmental standards. Climate change mitigation and adaptation goals are opposed to a number of conflicting interests. This makes collaboration with third parties including the private sector, communities and other stakeholders highly necessary.

In the working group between Durban and Bremen we want to exchange important knowledge on the relationship between planning and climate protection as well as climate change adaptation and put together a timetable for change in planning practice. That way, a sustainable contribution to climate protection and climate change adaptation in both cities is made possible. We are committed to ensuring that climate change mitigation and adaptation goals are integrated in city planning.

The key questions are:

  • What do we already do in planning, which contributes positively to adaptation and climate protection?
  • What do we do in planning, which stands in opposition to climate change adaptation and reduction targets?
  • How can planning be changed to improve its contribution to achieve climate change adaptation and reduction targets?

The discussion strands are:

  • Planning and social mix (participation processes)
  • Economic and social integration through mixed-use areas as well as densification
  • Built environment sustainability indicators and renewable energy infrastructure for planning and land management (mitigation and adaptation)
  • The role of green infrastructure in city construction/revitalization of urban green areas/city gardening

Climate Change in Bremen - Impacts and Adaptation

Also in Bremen, changing land use structures and land use decisions imply new land use conflicts. How can planning encounter these challenges with instruments and strategies? How can climate-efficient and climate-adapted settlement structures be made possible?

Potential impacts of climate change in Bremen to which city planning/urban development must react in future are:

  • Higher average temperature, heat waves
  • Higher pollutant concentrations
  • Lower humidity
  • Strong wind gustiness
  • More storm water events, floods

Possible areas of action:

  • Dealing with urban heat islands/heating-up of buildings/tropical nights
  • Air circulation and inflow, fresh air corridors
  • Surface sealing
  • Urban drainage during storm water events: An increased surface drainage, back water in the sewer system, floods from traffic areas and building structures require additional rain detention basins and flooding areas and lead to the necessity for a water-sensitive city planning
  • Dryness and dried up canal systems, odor

Results from the projects KLAS, nordwest2050 and climate change lower Weser will have a high meaning for future planning processes.

The exchange between Durban and Bremen in the field of sustainable city planning and climate change provides further ideas for the own development strategy in both cities.