Greater Stuttgart Region: Tackling integration gaps between city and region
Detailed description of the Good Practice
The greater Stuttgart region has 2.7 million inhabitants and is the centre of industrial science and research organizations in Germany. To sustainabily maintain its competitive status, it was necessary to adopt an integrated approach to the development of the 179 independent municipalities that made up the region.
The Verband Stuttgart was, therefore, founded in 1994 with 93 directly elected representatives in the Regional Assembly and an annual budget of EUR 260 million.
The range of joint responsibilities undertaken by the Verband Region Stuttgart included:
• a 10–15-year Regional Plan
• business promotion and tourism marketing
• transport planning and investment
• landscape and parks
• large infrastructure and investment
(e.g. Paris-Munich high-speed train)
• waste disposal
In addition the Verband can take on other tasks voluntarily, such as trade fairs and exhibitions. Some examples of joint actions include:
• Landscape planning and parks: the Verband created the 'Greater Stuttgart Landscape Park', showing where open areas are to be improved, redesigned, and linked together. The combined commitment of the Region, the municipalities, and all the various authorities is necessary to implement these plans.
• Traffic and transport planning: the traffic programme represents a blueprint for county and municipal planning and will ensure that the Verband is able to influence the investment programmes of the State of Baden-Württemberg and the German Federal Government. 85 % of its budget is devoted to local public
transport. The region of the Verband is 'buying in' transport services from transport companies, such as suburban electric services from Deutsche Bahn AG (German Railways).
• Waste disposal: along with the rural districts and the City of Stuttgart, the region of the Verband is responsible for a segment of waste management (dump category II). In 1997, the Verband established standardized conditions across the region for waste disposal, leading to a considerable reduction in charges.
The lessons of this joint regional governance for the greater Stuttgart region have demonstrated the importance of providing a unified picture inwardly as well as to the outside world. There have been many direct outcomes. For example, for the first time, the region now has an integrated traffic and transport concept allowing buses to become part of an 'extension' of the suburban electric railway network and 24/7 timetabling. Similarly, whereas the region of the Verband was only able to plan the green infrastructure in the past, it now invests in specific projects together with local authority partners, providing a network of open spaces, ecologically valuable green areas and small parks combined with landscapes.
As a result of long-term cooperation and the joint and integrated approach, the implementation of measures became more effective and efficient e.g. the cooperation enabled larger and more complex infrastructure projects, avoiding competing measures which would have led to a waste of resources, and thereby increasing the attractiveness and quality of life for the whole region.
quality of life
Objectives of the Good Practice
to adopt an integrated approach to the development of the 179 independent municipalities that made up the region.
Participants of the Good Practice
The Verband Stuttgart
Target group of the Good Practice
municipalities of Greater Stuttgart Region
Funding of the Good Practice
The Verband Stuttgart
More Details of the Good Practice
Documentation and documents
Data sources and references
EEA report #5/2009
Ensuring quality of life in Europe's cities and towns
Tackling the environmental challenges driven by European and global change