The latest revision of the Swiss Federal Spatial Planning Act requires the various Swiss cantons to revise their cantonal development plans with an eye to limiting suburban sprawl and promoting settlement densification. In response to the new requirement, the Canton of Schaffhausen has commissioned EBP to provide substantive and procedural support as it seeks to complete an appropriate revision of its cantonal development plan (CDP).
On March 3, 2013, Swiss voters approved a revision of the Federal Spatial Planning Act (RPG). The aim of the revision, which came into effect on May 1, 2014, is to promote a more sustainable approach to the use of land resources.
Paradigm shift in the Canton of Schaffhausen
The Federal Spatial Planning Act requires the cantons to map their existing settlement areas and to limit their approved development zones to a size that can be expected to cover their needs for a period of no longer than the next 15 years. This marks a shift away from the traditional, expansive land-development paradigm in favor of a new consolidative development paradigm.
EBP provides comprehensive processing and support services
Repeating a role that it played in the context of an earlier revision of Schaffhausen’s CDP (2009 – 2013), EBP has once again assisted the Schaffhausen Planning and Environmental Protection Agency in the drafting and implementation of an appropriate revision of the canton’s current CDP. The scope of EBP’s assignment included both substantive and procedural matters. In particular, the services provided included the following tasks:
- Drafting a project plan (roles, procedures and milestones)
- Identifying and defining substantive adaptation needs
- Organizing and executing informational events and municipal talks
- Adapting and revising the existing cantonal spatial development concept
- Drafting a new text for Settlement Development section of the CDP
- Drafting an explanatory report in accordance with Article 47 of the Spatial Planning Ordinance
- Evaluating the opinions submitted in connection with the public-input statute, and reviewing the preliminary federal audit
- Drafting the participatory report
- Providing support throughout the entire drafting and approval process (presentations and Q&A sessions before the Cantonal Committee on Spatial Planning and the corresponding Committee of the Federal Council)
- Providing global process support (scheduling, coordination, etc.) and quality assurance
Federal Council approves revision of development plan
The revision of the Settlement Development section of the CDP was extensive and included a specification of the parts of the canton that have been selected to accommodate population and job growth. The CDP also outlines the demanding requirements that are to be met by the various municipalities. After its prior ratification by the Cantonal Council, the revised CDP was approved by the Federal Council on April 10, 2019.
Picture Credits: Roland zh, CC BY-SA 3.0
Dr. Reto Nebel