Municipalities' Interest in Subsidies to Support Spatial Planning Reconfirmed, by Zuzana Vašinová, Ilona Kunešová
The aim of the national subsidy programme No. 117 55 is to adapt or convert spatial plans to a uniform standard. Despite the increase of the funds by CZK 45 million, the number of subsidies assigned for this call was completely drawn. The launch of another call can be expected at the end of 2024.
Municipalities Made Full Use of the Funds Allocated to the Call for Architectural and Urban Design Competitions, by Zuzana Vašinová, Josef Morkus
Ministry of Regional Development supports architectural and urban design competitions within the framework of the national subsidy programme. Fifteen competitions were supported in 2023 and the call allocated funds were nearly spent. Another call is expected to be launched by the end of 2023.
Compact Forms, Settlement Centrality and Mobility as Themes for Planning Functional Urban Areas. A Case Study of the Brno Metropolitan Area, by Jiří Malý
Functional urban areas have long been a subject of consideration for integrated strategic and spatial planning. At the same time, the regional scale of functionally closed territorial units becomes part of the imagination of compact forms and centrality of space. The article explores the meanings of compactness and centrality in urban environment and the metropolitan area as a whole. Using data on labour mobility and functional territory use, the specifics of settlement structures of different scales are demonstrated in the example of the Brno metropolitan area. The results show the spatial variability of the relationship between urbanistically approached static compactness and functionally viewed population dynamics (mobility). While the accessibility of central (urban) functions is related to shorter walking or cycling routes for personal mobility mainly in the historically established city centre, (however not in all other secondary urban centres), short routes are being replaced by public transport, largely by train transport, as the scale shifts to the metropolitan level. However, it turns out that the deconcentration of the population into the wider metropolitan area does not imply a relative increase in the share of train travel, as even in population-gaining municipalities connected directly to rail infrastructure, the importance of the car as a means of regular commuting has been increasing. The findings can serve both to set the basis for mobility planning and to rethink the planning concepts of the short-distance city and the fifteen-minute city.
Regional Competitiveness of Czech Border Areas, by Václav Novák & Jaroslav Koutský
The presented paper reflects the results of research activities within the TA CR Beta project and deals with cross-border regions and their sub-national parts. It focuses mainly on the Czech border areas. The main objective of the paper is to assess the competitiveness of Czech border regions using a composite indicator of regional competitiveness. Data on cross-border comparability were used. Data on gross domestic product, demographic indicators, data on sectoral employment and gross value added were used within the regional subdivision. The analysis is complemented by additional insights resulting from contract research. It was found that the Czech border regions still lag far behind neighbouring regions of Germany and Austria in terms of competitiveness. The existence of significant asymmetries in the cross-border context persists. The situation is different in the Czech-Polish border region. The Polish regions show a similar level of competitiveness to the Czech regions, with industrial areas undergoing a relatively successful process of re-industrialisation. A low degree of interdependence with the Slovak border regions was determined.
Protection of Values and Limits of Land Use in the Moravian-Silesian Region in the Context of the Location of Photovoltaic and Wind Power Plants, by Jan Cihlář & Simona Vondráčková
Adoption of Act No. 19/2023 Coll. (hereinafter referred to as "Lex RES I"), which entered into force on 24 January 2023, also amended the Building Act, extending the definition of public infrastructure in the field of technical infrastructure to include electricity generation plants from renewable energy sources (hereinafter referred to as "RES electricity generation plants"). This is a significant change in legislation from the point of view of spatial planning, as the location of the RES plants in undeveloped areas can become subject to the procedure under Section 18(5) of the Building Act unless their placement is explicitly excluded by the spatial planning documentation for reasons of public interest. In principle, this opens an easier way to implement such projects.
Regions and municipalities are now faced with the issue of how to effectively regulate the placement of these structures on their territory, especially in undeveloped areas. Judgements of the Supreme Administrative Court ("SAC") about the prohibition of certain types of structures and facilities under Section 18(5) of the Building Act in spatial planning documentation show that a differentiated and properly justified approach to the regulation of undeveloped areas is necessary. There is a need to identify and protect those specific public interests that outweigh the public interest in the location of the RES plant.
The paper presents one of the possible methodological approaches to managing the development of the region's territory in the context of the placement of RES plants, namely photovoltaic power plants (hereinafter referred to as "PV plants") in the form of solar parks and wind power plants (hereinafter referred to as "WPPs"), based on the case study "Spatial study of the assessment of the territory of the Moravian-Silesian Region in terms of the existing limits for the placement of wind power plants and photovoltaic power plants" (hereinafter referred to as the "spatial study"). This approach is in principle based solely on the protection of the values and limits of land use with an emphasis on a differentiated approach to the protection of the landscape character. In fact, the concentration of positive landscape features constitutes the basic restrictive conditions for the placement of RES plants.
Spatial Dimension of Social Exclusion: Tools for Monitoring and Use in Public Policies, by Roman Matoušek, Hana Vališová
The current economic situation has led to the realisation that poverty and social exclusion represent one of the key challenges both for social policies and areas of housing, healthcare, security or tackling over-indebtedness. The concentration of socially excluded people in certain localities and regions is a challenge also for territorial cohesion. The diversity of both the life situations of socially excluded and vulnerable people and the mechanisms that can lead to poverty and social exclusion requires a robust system of indicators to monitor the situation and its changes in the necessary spatial detail. The article aims to present three methodological approaches that have emerged in recent years to monitor some dimensions of social exclusion, to show the possibilities of their synergies and their use in the development of social inclusion policies at national, regional and local levels. The Social Exclusion Index (Lang & Matoušek, 2020) defines a set of indicators and a procedure for assessing the concentration of socially excluded people and those at risk of social exclusion at the level of municipalities and larger spatial units composed of municipalities and is used primarily to target both national and European resources to the areas with the greatest extent of problems. Methodology for identifying locations of residential segregation (Sýkora, 2018) based on data on recipients of benefits in material need, tracks the detailed level of basic settlement units and provides a number of implications for urban and housing policies of cities and municipalities. The typology of localities where socially excluded people live (Vališová, 2021) is based mainly on field research at the level of individual houses or streets in order to identify specific tools of intervention for the actors operating at the local level.
Changing the Approach to Planning the Relationship between Settlements and Railway Infrastructure in the Outskirts of the Capital City of Prague, by Jan Martin
The article deals with the coordination of the spatial development and transport infrastructure to promote the use of public transport and the development of transport systems in order to adequately serve both existing and planned development centres. The approach focuses on planning development in such a way as to take full advantage of the potential of current transport systems, as well as planning for infrastructure development that can effectively use current capacities. The aim is to define the problems arising from the current approach to the planning of this relationship and, based on theoretical and practical knowledge from foreign scientific literature and examples of good practice, to propose an adequate approach to coordinating the planning of the development of both systems. The concept of transit-oriented development is demonstrated using the example of commuter rail in the Prague metropolitan area and addresses the context-specific obstacles that transit-oriented development has encountered so far. Based on a practical assessment of the potential for residential development surrounding individual stops, a procedure for implementing a more sustainable system of settlement development is proposed in relation to high-capacity public transport systems. This presents an alternative to the unsustainable extensive development of suburban residential areas,
which currently addresses transport planning primarily through the construction of "Park and Ride" car parks.