Three representatives of the Krakow Functional Urban Area met on May 29th, 2019 with LOW CARB partners to learn, use, and provide feedback about their experience with the tool. Discover what the new tool can do, and RC’s role, and why it was a huge success for it most recent users.
The Metropolitan Association of Kraków represents 14 municipalities, including the Municipality of Kraków and the small commune Skáwina, both of whom have recently begun co-operating in the LOW-CARB project (managed by Rupprecht Consult). On 27th May 2019, stakeholders from the three institutions of the Kraków Functional Urban Area (FUA) came together to test LOW-CARB’s new update of the SUMP Self-Assessment tool. They were Kraków Transport Authority, Skáwina, and the Metropolitan Association Kraków. The update and contextualisation of the self-assessment tool to Central Europe is an important output and huge success for LOW-CARB. This is because the creation and implementation of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans is a cornerstone of the European Commission’s Urban Mobility Package which aims to harmonize and integrate sustainable mobility across the EU.
The SUMP Self-Assessment Tool has been designed to enable ambitious and forward-thinking planning authorities to quickly assess their compliance of a mobility plan with the European Commission’s SUMP guidelines (authored by Rupprecht Consults). The self-assessment of a region’s SUMP thus allows stakeholders to uniquely assess where they can improve their planning processes by means of a questionnaire. LOW-CARB recently modified the tool from its previous version to now include queries about municipalities where no SUMPs exist yet. It was an important goal of LOW-CARB to include a Central European perspective into the tool, as it was formerly aimed at cities with SUMPs already in place. However, SUMP roll-out in CE has been sporadic and is not yet very widespread, and the Self-Assessment Tool needed to take that into consideration. It is now able to analyse and offer recommendations and resources for cities and FUAs with little or no experience in sustainable urban mobility planning. Therefore, the tool has become more inclusive of municipalities with little experience in inter-municipal cooperation at the FUA level. The tool will also be translated into different Central European languages to allow for its widespread usage across CE.
Since Kraków and the surrounding smaller communes have not yet created a SUMP and have had little cooperation with each other in regards to sustainable mobility, this offered a great opportunity to test the readiness of the modified self-assessment tool with different stakeholders before it will be made publicly available as part of LOW-CARB’s outputs. We are happy to report that the trial was a great success! A key objective of the tool is to initiate communication between different stakeholders, and the workshop strongly demonstrated its capability to do this! The structure of the questionnaire initiated an open, friendly and fact-based dialogue on topics about air pollution, traffic congestion, low-emission zones, bike lanes, and B&R / P&Rs. Soon after the trial, more questions about differences in quality standards and indicators for decision-making came up within the group. The test session led the stakeholders to a decision to organize a workshop together with all of the 14 municipalities of Krakow’s FUA, so that they may discuss and apply what they identified using the self-assessment tool, and all-together build a joint-vision and perhaps a common framework or even a SUMP for the FUA and each municipalities’ sustainable mobility agendas.