Population growth and other societal developments such the trend toward 24/7 services have left the Swiss city of Sursee grappling with a number of challenges. The city commissioned EBP to draft a concept for the effective and sustainable management of the city’s public spaces.
The strain on public spaces in the city of Sursee had been mounting for a long time. Ever more people had come to frequent the city’s attractive parks, squares and green spaces. This increase in use naturally went hand in hand with an increase in negative side effects such as littering, disturbance of the peace and vandalism. Unsatisfied with resorting to ad hoc responses such as the public posting of regulations at popular venues and other localized measures, the city decided to develop a concept for the unified, transparent and sustainable management of its public spaces.
In the context of helping the city of Sursee to draft the concept, we analyzed the following questions:
- Current-state analysis: What are the qualities that distinguish each of the relevant locations and what challenges apply to each location?
- Sursee 2026: What developments can be expected to have an impact on the city’s public spaces in the future?
- Draft of guidelines: What principles or guidelines should Sursee follow in the context of designing and managing the city’s public spaces?
- Need for action and measures: What can the city do to implement the guidelines?
An interdisciplinary working group comprised of representatives of all stakeholder categories (e.g. people of all ages, districts, schools, city agencies and industries) was established to address the critical factors in the context of a moderated process.
The members of the City Council then debated and ultimately ratified the guidelines before defining the concept’s implementation. The members agreed that the concept (Public Spaces in Sursee) provides a sound basis to approach the associated challenges and to secure high quality public spaces for the long term.