The Federal Office for Building and Regional Planning

Research Project: "Regional Landscaping"


The key areas of landscape transformation and need for action in the various landscape types were visualized on the basis of an updated landscape typology for Germany. The participants gave advice for the further development and concretization. The heritage landscapes in Germany and options for protecting them in the spatial planning were put for discussion as an approach to environmental assets. A concretization on a Länder and regional level was found to be desirable here. In addition to which the action level for the heritage landscapes was found to need further deepening.

The results from the model regions demonstrated how heterogeneous the agrarian landscapes are throughout the country, and how differentiated the tasks for controlling and qualifying them. Given the limited effectiveness of formal instruments in the qualitative design of land uses, many participants prioritized the application of informal instruments and communication processes. The concept of a blue-green infrastructure offers various options for a cross-sectoral and coherent pooling of landscape- and open space-related measures on a national, regional and local level. The multifunctional approach and close coordination of various policy areas and administration levels were positively emphasized. Although many measures affect the landscape directly, offensive landscaping was found to play no or merely a subordinate role in the implementation.

For the (sub-) urban landscapes, the "narrative", "open field" and "design quality" action approaches were discussed by the participants on the basis of the projects in the model regions. The "narrative" visualizes regional landscaping objectives as a framework story. The discussions urged for the practicability of this landscape narrative. The challenge in the fragmented landscapes resides in profiling the heterogeneous "landscape fields", and networking them across infrastructure barriers. Design guidelines enable many small implementation measures to contribute to a consistent "larger" picture. The landscape quality of infrastructure landscapes can be decisively upgraded by the design of technical infrastructures. The participants largely agreed on the importance of the construction culture and design competitions for the design, but the extensive time and resource requirements were also pointed out, however.

The participants emphasized that the formal spatial planning instruments are often not made full use of with regard to the landscape. The concerns of saving significant landscapes and active landscaping should be explicitly addressed by spatial planning instruments overall. Available here for spatial designations besides priority and restricted areas are also multifunctional green corridors or landscaping focus areas. The discussions on the other hand clearly showed that development-related objectives, especially, are more easily achievable by way of informal instruments. The creative application of informal instruments to the regional landscape dialogue and realization of spatial planning objectives were important project modules in the model regions, and decisively contributed to the projects' success.

Two surveys carried out amongst the participants confirmed the urgent need for action in the regional landscaping for all key issues. Success factors of and obstacles to the landscaping were prioritized in addition to this. The actor-based agreement of guiding principles and objectives and their political anchoring were rated by the participants as the most important success factors, while the high land grabbing and development pressure was isolated as a significant obstacle. Where controlling and shaping the landscape transformation is concerned, the participants expect further stimuli and support from the federal spatial planning.


The results meeting served to discuss various already existing and good approaches to reinforcing the concerns of the environmental asset of landscape. Many innovative processes and projects have shown that landscape design can be integrated in the planning processes, and the landscape dialogue conducted constructively. Good examples of dovetailing informal and formal planning instruments for securing and developing the environmental asset of landscape could also be developed in the process. The example of blue-green infrastructures highlights the options available for also intervening with a development objective design-wise, especially in the (sub-) urban and task landscapes. In areas with very extensive design requirements, solutions are often not all that obvious. It was illustrated in the process that the landscape perception can also be greatly affected with very small-scale interventions. A handbook created as a final product of the demonstration project is intended to provide the regions with aids enabling them to adequately and creatively respond to the challenges of their landscapes' transformation.

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