Building on 20 Years of Community Support to Urban Development

Conference - Brussels, 4 February 2010

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videoDownload the 20 Years EU Urban Policy Video (100 MB)

 

Outline

Urban areas host today over 70 percent of Europeans. By their very nature, conurbations are places where people meet; businesses thrive; ideas develop, gain momentum and are exchanged. Cities, or clusters of them, most often are the social, economic and cultural hearts of the surrounding region or even their whole countries.

Since 1989, the European Commission has endeavoured to support urban development while promoting inclusion and regeneration: using the untapped potential of the cities for the benefits of citizens throughout a growing EU. An initially timid support has greatly evolved and diversified, and today the urban dimension is a recognised element of Cohesion policy, with in excess of €10 billion allocated to urban priorities in the funded programmes. More importantly, the "urban acquis" - which has been fine-tuned over time - and its world-class integrated, participative approach are being increasingly placed at the core of urban actions. Exchange programmes among cities have also proved tremendously successful – both in terms of popularity with the local practitioners and for the knowledge cities have collectively produced.

Looking at these past 20 years and at how Cohesion Policy keeps helping cities grow is the core purpose of this meeting. Building on 20 years of achievements, current and future interventions have a solid legacy to improve upon.