Project Details

Title: Periurban Parks - Improving Environmental Conditions in Suburban Areas
Priority: 2: Environment and risk prevention
Theme: Biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage (including air quality)

Type of intervention

Type of intervention: 1: Regional Initiative Project
Mini-programme: No
Duration: 1st Jan 2010 - 31st Dec 2012


Total budget: €2,288,528.00
ERDF contribution: €1,805,604.38

Lead partner

Regional Government of Tuscany
50127, FIRENZE

  • Click for contact details
    • Contact Person: Antonella Turci
      Phone: 390554384994
      Fax: 390554383116

Project summary

PERIURBAN is a regional initiative project, of medium level cooperation intensity, which uses interregional exchange of experiences to improve policies on management of natural suburban areas. PERIURBAN focuses specifically on policy and management solutions to mitigate pressures on biodiversity. The creation and management of parks in natural suburban areas has a positive impact on the environment and on halting biodiversity loss. Focus on such initiatives is in line with European environment policy and redevelopment in suburban areas.

PERIURBAN is an integration of 2 European initiatives: GreenLink led by Regione Toscana and CityNature promoted by FEDENATUR. Through cooperation, the leaders of these 2 initiatives saw the potential for real progress in the field on management of suburban areas for better environmental conditions.

PERIURBAN brings together 14 partners from 11 EU countries. Partners all have experience in and competencies to manage suburban areas, but are at

different stages with periurban parks. While some have long promoted such parks, and currently face management and sustainability concerns, others plan for their implementation and build on different suburban management experiences. Thus, this strong collection of partners representing regional authorities, local authorities, periurban parks and associations of parks, learn from each others' experiences in a continuous process of exchange.

Regione Toscana is responsible for management and coordination of the project (Component 1). FEDENATUR, with its vast network of contacts all over Europe, is in charge of Communication and Dissemination of activities and results (Component 2) to a wide and relevant audience. These horizontal activities go alongside the core activities of Exchange of Experiences (Component 3) and Methodology Testing and Action Plans (Component 4). During Component 3 (led by Regione Toscana), partners are involved in participative exchange workshops, thematic seminars

and study visits, all of which support them in a territorial analysis (including good practices). These analyses are brought together in a joint report and used to form the basis of a Common Methodology for creation and management of periurban parks. In Component 4 (led by P16), partners test the methodology in 4 partner areas and, through intense activities and peer reviews, feed back into the methodology to improve and consolidate it.

To ensure long term sustainability of actions promoting suburban management, partners produces action plans for potential future activities, based on the PERIURBAN learning process. Memorandums of Understanding are signed between partners who see potential for future, constructive cooperation (among partners and with external entities involved in activities). The project concludes with an international conference in Tuscany, where the foundations for further steps forward in this field are sealed.

Project achievements

The overall objective of PERIURBAN is to use interregional exchange on experiences of periurban Parks to improve policies on the management of natural suburban areas.

PERIURBAN kicked off in July 2010 in Florence. Since then, 9 more meetings and exchange events have been organised, including:

• 4 thematic seminars: Seville (ES), May 2010 “The Role of Periurban Natural Areas in Models of Urban and Land Planning”; Katowice (PL), December 2010, “From a City to a Metropolis – Ways of European Development”; Milan (IT) May 2011, “Legal Status of Periurban Areas and other Green Infrastructure”; Aberdeen (UK), “Implementation of Management plans in periurban natural areas”;

• 13 study visits. The wide variety of periurban parks in existence or in planning phase is highlighted by the different study visit locations, which included: natural parks; ex-mining areas undergoing reconstruction; areas of mixed use on the edge of capital cities; agricultural parks; city parks; costal parks;

forestry parks; parks of historical and cultural value.

Despite differences, all face common problems in improving environmental conditions in periurban areas;

• 11 exchange events, testing different participative methodologies, including: exchange on specific themes (e.g. sessions focused on environmental and rural protection or social and cultural issues); exchange on methodological issues (e.g. joint work on the structure and content of the Common Methodology on Creation and Management of Periurban Parks); Peer review sessions, with a focus on 4 project pilot areas;

• 1 working session with the European Commission (DG ENV) and 2 other European Projects working on similar issues (Euroscapes, IVC; SURF, IVB North Sea). The seminar was moderated by the director of the ERRIN network and saw the participation of over 50 people;

• 1 final Conference "Periurban Parks: Adding Value to Metropolitan Areas", organised in Florence (October 2012) with the participation of over 150 people.

On the basis of exchange and following a common template, partners undertook an study of territorial characteristics, obstacles in creation and management of periurban parks and good practices or solutions to these obstacles. Reports were used as a basis for the Tool Kit for the creation and management of periurban parks. This document was developed in collaboration between partners, together with an interactive guide for policy makers. Both have been tested by partners and their stakeholders and updated as a result of this feedback.

The Tool Kit includes Good Practices from partner regions and initiatives in other EU regions. These have helped to identify key elements in the creation and management of periurban parks and means of improving policy initiatives and instruments at regional level. 4 partners have completed pilot actions to test aspects of the methodology, with support from other partners in the form of peer review groups. As a result, all partners have designed long term

action plans for actions to be carried out in their local periurban parks.

A large number and range of regional stakeholders have been involved in initiatives ranging from seminars, to visits, to personal contact, to practical initiatives within the park. EU level communication is managed by FEDENATUR on the basis of a detailed communication plan. The web site is available on-line with up to date information and 1 project brochure and 4 newsletters have been published. Various seminars have been organised, including 2 interregional seminars held in collaboration with FEDENATUR initiatives (Lyon (FR), June 2012 and Vitoria-Gasteiz (ES), June 2012) and a wide range of local level events.

A set of policy recommendations for the environmental management of periurban areas have been developed thanks to collaboration between partners and with other entities. These have been presented and disseminated as a collaboration between: PERIURBAN and EUROSCAPES projects; PURPLE network; FEDENATUR.


Institution, Town Country Region Contact details
Regional Government of Tuscany, FIRENZE ITALY Toscana 390554384994
FEDENATUR : European Federation Natural & Rural, Metropolitan & Periurban spaces, Barcelona SPAIN Cataluña 34932800672
Common profit Enterprise of Municipality of Zografou, Zografou – Athens GREECE Attiki 30 25210 34911
Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeen UNITED KINGDOM North Eastern Scotland 0044 01224 523316
Vitosha Nature Park Directorate, Sofia BULGARIA Yugozapaden 00359 2 988 58 41
The City of Košice, Košice SLOVAKIA Vychodne Slovensko 00421 55 6419 464
Regional Government of Lombardy, Milano ITALY Lombardia 0039 02 6765 4530
Danube-Ipoly National Park Directorate, Budapest HUNGARY Kozep-Magyarorszag 0036 1 3914636
Lille Metropolitan Natural Space Office, Lille Cedex FRANCE Nord - Pas-de-Calais 03 20 63 11 22
Kampinos National Park, Izabelin POLAND Mazowieckie 48227226559
Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, Prague 6 - Suchdol CZECH REPUBLIC Praha 42 022 438 4757
Regional Government of Andalusia, Regional Ministry for Environment - Directorate General for Sustainability in the Network of Natural Areas, Seville SPAIN Andalucía 34-954787208
General Council of Seine-Saint-Denis, Bobigny cedex FRANCE Île de France 0033 1 43 93 11 53
Lisbon Municipality, Lisbon PORTUGAL Lisboa 00351-213614400
Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia, Katowice POLAND Slaskie +48 32 253 04 25 x 17
Larnaca District Development Agency, Larnaca CYPRUS Kypros / Kibris 00 357 24815280


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