On Thursday 10th of September the URBAN Intergroup members and partners met at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The main aim of this meeting was to have a follow-up discussion after the plenary vote on the INI report “Urban dimensions of EU policies”. Members and partners debated about the next steps towards the EU Urban Agenda. Ms Kerstin Westphal, EP rapporteur, thanked all the shadow rapporteurs who worked on this dossier and briefly presented its key elements. She underlined that the main goal of EP’s report is to put the Urban Agenda into the European policies.
URBAN Intergroup members believe that thanks to this report cities will be earlier involved in policy making and that the European Commission will better coordinate urban dimension’s issues in its different services. However, during the discussion some droughts have been expressed concerning the political lead of the EU Urban Agenda inside the European Commission. Jan Olbrycht reminded that the URBAN Intergroup is still waiting for the official reply from the EC to the Written Question concerning the coordination within the Commission on the urban dimension. In conclusion of the meeting, members agreed that the Intergroup will send a letter to the Luxembourg and the Dutch Presidency asking for clarification about the future actions which will be taken in order to develop the EU Urban Agenda.
During the next meeting of the Intergroup, on October 29th in Strasbourg, DG REGIO will present State of play of the EU Urban Agenda. Probably on November 26th the Representative of the Dutch Presidency will present the next Presidency’s priorities.
On Thursday, June 11th the URBAN Intergroup held its monthly meeting in Strasbourg. This month participants discussed the outcomes of the two-day Informal Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Territorial Cohesion and Urban Matters which took place in Riga on Tuesday and Wednesday (9-10th June).
Discussions focused on the Riga Declaration “Towards the EU Urban Agenda” adopted yesterday. Participants wondered what it will bring about and what will be its actual impact on shaping of the EU Urban agenda. The European Parliament’s position on the topic of the EU Urban agenda was also raised and discussed vividly.
More information about the Informal Meeting and media coverage can be found on the webpage of the Latvian Presidency.
The last meeting of the URBAN Intergroup took place on Thursday, May 21st in Strasbourg.
The main point of this month’s meeting was presentation of the EU project EPOurban by Mr Karsten Gerkens, Director of the Office of Urban Regeneration and Residential Development for Leipzig City Council. Core outputs, results, conclusions and next steps included in the EPO urban: Enabling private owners of residential buildings to integrate into Urban Restructuring Processes policy paper were discussed. A vivid debate with URBAN members followed and various issues regarding the urban regeneration have been raised.
The meeting was a perfect occasion to exchange knowledge and practices leading to a better urban policy in the future. More information about the meeting in 15th issue of the URBAN Newsletter.
On Thursday, April 30th members of the URBAN Intergroup took part in the first monthly meeting in Strasbourg. The main point of April’s encounter, under the slogan “Triggering multiple benefits for urban areas it’s more than renovation”, was building renovation.
URBAN members had a chance to listen to and debate with professionals in field of sustainable building renovation. Three presentations deepening the topic of were delivered by guest speakers from Renovate Europe Campaign, European Commission and Energiesprong.
Firstly, Adrian Joyce, Campaign Director at Renovate Europe recounted the principles and objectives of Renovate Europe Manifesto and their campaigning. Secondly, Yamina Saheb from Joint Research Center revealed how building renovation is regarded at European Commission, explained its position and reminded current regulations. Finally, Ron van Erck representing Energiesprong gave a practitioner’s vision of what building renovation means and should be in order to obtain sustainable results.
Members of the URBAN Intergroup present to the meeting appreciated received knowledge, whether it is theoretical or practical. A vast discussion followed the three presentations.
Next URBAN monthly meeting with take place on Thursday, 21st May in Strasbourg.
On Wednesday 7th of January URBAN Intergroup held a first meeting regrouping all members and partners.
The meeting was chaired by Peter Simon (S&D/Germany), Vice-President of the URBAN Intergroup. The main point of the meeting was the presentation of the State of play of the EU Urban Agenda by Christian Svanfeldt from the European Commission. After the presentation, members and partners expressed their doubts and concerns about the EU Urban Agenda and called for a common action within the Intergroup.
The newly nominated bureau was presented and a draft agenda of actions discussed.
As of January 7th, URBAN Intergroup counts 83 MEP members from all of the political groups and 93 partners. Coming from various horizons, they all have one thing in commun – their interest in urban issues.