2013 Evaluation of cooperative planning procedures

Evaluation of cooperative planning procedures in Vienna, commissioned by the city of Vienna, Magistratsabteilung 21 – Stadtteilplanung und Flächennutzung (Urban planning and zoning).
Nine cooperative planning procedures from 2011 to 2013 (Knüpfwerk Atzgersdorf, Hauptbahnhof, In der Wiesen Ost, Eislaufverein, Neu-Leopoldau, Ödenburger Straße, Dittelgasse, Scherbangasse, Franzosengraben) were evaluated to develop this sort of procedure for ongoing use. The research design comprised qualitative interviews as well as an online survey of all 160 participants of the nine procedures.
Results are published, they can bei ordered here and downloaded here.

In 2012, Vienna’s Administrative Group for Planning introduced the so-called cooperative planning procedure as a new method of urban planning. This new approach is used in addition to the traditional planning methods of the urban design competition and urban design studies. With this new method, Vienna follows cities and regions like Zurich, Munich and the Ruhr area. After carrying out the first nine procedures in very different ways, the evaluation should analyse if the new approach proved of value and what practices are useful.

Basis for the evaluation were 20 interviews, several workshops and discussions with protagonists of the method, an online survey with all 170 participants and an analysis of result documents. With this material, the nine planning procedures were assessed with their pros and cons, exemplary procedures from the past and from other cities were described. The planning procedures were categorized based in several criteria; their benefits and disadvantages were described as well as objectives and how they were achieved and, finally, detailed recommendations for further action were produced.

The evaluation showed that in important areas, the new cooperative planning procedure led to improvements (dialogical urban development, securing of urban qualities, avoiding of tedious redesigns, consolidation of knowledge instead of selection of the relatively best). But it also showed that in certain aspects, success cannot be seen by now (improvement of planning culture, better foundations for further planning), and in one important aspect (connection with the public) there still exist shortcomings.

After finishing this project, I was awarded (together with raum & kommunikation) with the development of a guideline for cooperative planning procedures.