Urban Task Forces

  • Kavala
  • Baia Mare
  • Alba Iulia
  • Foggia
  • Satu Mare
  • Temerin
  • Herceg Novi
  • Balti
  • Drama

Kavala Urban Task Force

Since the introduction of the recent no 3852 Local Administration Law of 2010, all Local Governments in Greece have at their disposal a new tool for public consultation: the Municipal Consultation Committee. The main problem is that the Consultation Committee actually exists as an extension of the city’s Council on the one hand and as a forum of the representatives of local public authorities and private bodies on the other, both of which never had a problem of participating in public decision making whatsoever. Those that were excluded from such privileges in the past still suffer political isolation: young entrepreneurs and scientists, people that feel uncomfortable with the established mechanisms and processes of public policy making, the creative youth, etc.

Thus, we perceived the introduction of the Urban Center and Urban Task Force tools as a unique opportunity to bring these precious local actors back in the game. The STATUS methodology allowed us to bypass the usual stakeholders that take part in the public hearings and invite first the young, creative, enthusiastic and start-upers of the region and manage to install a new spirit & culture before opening the scene to the usual players of our local affairs. This way, our efforts to make a difference with the Urban Center certainly have better chances.

The Kavala UTF is the result of an ongoing process of stakeholder pool distillation , as for the municipality the process does not end with STATUS but rather begins with it, through the constitution of the Kavala Urban Center. The Urban Task Force initially crystallized in the STATUS stakeholder workshops represents a first step in providing the city with an active group supporting the capacity building of the local urban system as a whole to define, evaluate and apply solutions for pressing problems. On the other hand the KUC group represents a task force in itself, and while common grounds and parallelism exist between these two groups both overseen by Kavala Municipality, the relation between them will need to be defined in the following period of implementation.

The objectives of the UTF are to plan, coordinate and monitor relevant activity of the stakeholders and to implement the Strategic Agenda in line with local needs, existing planning documents and feasibility studies. The purpose of the informal agreement in Kavala has been to create the good practice of open and recurring discussion between the Urban Task Force members.

The Urban Task Force (UTF) of Kavala will be a constant generator of proposed solutions for the problems faced by the Municipality and its local area.

The Municipality of Kavala, as a main financing body of the UTF and UC in the first stage, will have sole ownership and responsibility of the activities implemented. The Urban Task Force members and other collaborating stakeholders participate with time and commitment to the various actions to be implemented. The aim would be to turn the Urban center and Urban Task force into a type of Public – private body. On the medium term – within 3 years, the profile of the Urban center will be shifted to that of an NGO.

Baia Mare Metropolitan Task Force

The participatory process set out in STATUS by partner Baia Mare aims at the co-design of its Metropolitan Agenda and represents an instrument for creating sustainability for it, through a negotiated, better informed and long-term involved metropolitan dialogue.
The key issue that the partner aimed at addressing through this process was thus the generation of the most accurate picture of the actual development of the metropolitan area, and subsequently the best supported set of realistic priority actions for the next years in order to foster competitive development in the area.
Besides an active trigger for implementing the BMMA STA, the scope of the MTF – according to the acknowledged Partnership Agreement – is to provide a functional structure in support of the adjoining members (mainly consisting of public administrations and/or public service providers) to implement projects; hence, a debate function, followed by a secondary role of awareness raising and informative participation. The main topics addressed cover promoting campaigns with relevance towards the metropolitan area's economic vitality, environmental sustainability and community involvement. Consequently, it advocates for the resilience of the community working environment at administrative level within the BMMA. At core foundation, it will strive to ensure a guiding role in proposing various implementation schemes and policies to be undertaken by the member participants within their local development plans, also contributing as a facilitator in the overall process of accommodating bottom-up approaches coming from the involved communities of the BMMA. Thus, it will ensure a great degree of territorial harmonisation, both in terms of vertical and also horizontal policies. Furthermore, the MTF will act as a revolving fund for territorial priority investments, pinpointed in the STATUS Agenda, as well as transcending beyond the STATUS Agenda, towards the implication of further National or European accessing opportunities.
Overall, the MTF will pose as an Observer, redirecting to dedicated working groups on sectoral or transgressing problems, whilst providing a mediating umbrella for their integrated approach.
Under the auspices of the MTF, there will be a dedicated priority lane for aligning the objectives and activities of each project proposal with the BMMA STA, backed up by the acknowledged commitment undertaken by members in locally handling their specific projects in relation to this.The participatory planning process in the Baia Mare Metropolitan Area has been a successful one, as highlighted by the important number of participating organizations and people in the STATUS Workshops. The STATUS Methodology proposed for tackling problems and identifying solutions in small and medium-sized urban town systems aided in gathering all the stakeholders with important responsibilities in implementing EU-funded projects in the area: local public administrations, the County Council, Intercommunity Development Associations, Local Action Groups, the University or private companies which are responsible for providing different public services (transportation, water and sewage).
MTF first tasks should cover to the identification of the course of actions needed to facilitate/document the various activities foreseen and/or subject to debate. Consequently, preparing progress reports regarding the statute of the implementation for the metropolitan-scale impacting projects, along with creating the common database for projects already envisaged in the BMMA STA, would consist ground zero for further deployments.
Moreover, the MTF will have to designate the people / organizations responsible for the implementation and monitoring of the different priority projects and actions proposed within the BMMA STA.

Alba Iulia Urban Task Force

The reason of Alba Iulia Association for Intercommunity Development - AIDA becoming a STATUS partner, is in relation with the vision for the development of the local public administration, that transcends the strict interest of the city (Alba Iulia), and of the development initiatives designed with the neighbors, with consciousness that development opportunities are greater if the polycentric area is valued and efforts are common. Competitive transformation may not be singular examples, and Alba Iulia understood this since 2007, with the establishment of AIDA. By this time we hold a portfolio of projects with vision over the entire territory, which involves all members.
In the case of the STATUS project, it allows too the development of a strategy for the Municipality of Alba Iulia, on medium and long term, related with the present General Urban Plan, designed and undertaken within the framework of the Local Council. This strategy will complement existing projects de definitely in development, and benefits from the guidance and monitoring of experts and professionals, representatives of institutions with proven abilities in the field of urban planning and strategy.
The scope of the activity of UTF AIDA is “planning, coordinate and monitor of relevant activity of the business partners part of the present protocol, for implementing the Strategic Agenda developed by the STATUS Project in line with the relevant development strategies”
The STATUS Urban Task Force in Alba Iulia Association for Intercommunity Development – AIDA is organised around two public stakeholders, according to the Partnership Agreement between AIDA and Alba Iulia Municipality.
Technically, the Urban Task Force can be described as including besides the representatives of the partner and local authorities (the city manager, municipal chief architect, directors of urban planning, environment, mobility and financial departments), the UTF will consist of the most interested and qualified urban actors from the private realm and civil society, and despite the diversity of origin (media, business, academics, NGO, health, cultural institutions etc) turns out in uniformity on pursuit of strategy implementations. We currently are counting on more than 30 persons who will invest in keeping the task force alive and functioning beyond the project deadline. AIDA recognized the importance of adapting the stakeholder pool to the results of the desk analysis revealing the most problematic sectors and has operated necessary changes in the list.

Provincia di Foggia Territorial Task Force

The partners of the Territorial Task Force (TTF) in Provincia of Foggia recognize that through dialogue and communication, collaboration, coordination, and the development of joint projects in partnership, they can achieve synergies that enable the achievement of the recovery and enhancement of the tratturo.
The objectives of the TTF are: planning, coordination and monitoring of those activities that are relevant to the implementation of the strategic retrieval and enhancement of Tratturo Pescasseroli-Candela. In particular, each partner aims to provide and/or support:
  • the definition of strategies, actions/interventions and the Agenda for their implementation;

  • the coordination of public and private interventions, which must be considered with a variable geometry;

  • the sensitization and involvement of local actors, and of communities in general, through appropriate communication actions;

  • the support and monitoring of agreements and initiatives already in place.

The participation planning process was organized as a sequence of events in a continuous, evolving, and action-oriented process. The three workshops have been considered as a great opportunity for local actors to discuss, all together, the future of the tratturo area. The province of Foggia constituted the task force in an informal way, by realizing a structure without legal personality and based on a partnership agreement signed between the stakeholders.
The partnerships agreement was signed in October 2, 2014 and it suggests the collaboration between the province of Foggia and the other underwriters that create a Territorial Task Force (TTF) and undertake to the formation of a Territorial Center (TC).
The Agreement aims to ensure new opportunities for planning and cooperation through the coordination and continuous consultation and through the reciprocal use of structures and/or the mutual promotion of initiatives.
The Province of Foggia plays the role of coordinator of the TTF; other partners have identified the role they have to play in the Center; each of them is responsible for one or more projects.

Satu Mare Urban Task Force

The Satu Mare Urban Task Force is made up of a dedicated number of stakeholders and City Hall experts who have already been involved in the participatory approach to the elaboration of the city’s Sustainable Development Strategy. They have gone all the way from SWOT analysis, problem identification, suggested solutions to the proper design of the Strategic Agenda, defining priority axes, integrated projects, output and result monitoring indicators. They have, therefore, already gathered enough information and experience to be the most suited group of people for the complex job of monitoring the implementation of the strategy, of identifying mid-term necessary adjustments or suggesting new ways of handling unforeseen future problems or challenges for urban development. This is why we decided to shape the UTF as a consultative body with the primary mission of monitoring the implementation of the Strategy, but who will also keep a watchful eye on the evolution of things, on trends, opportunities, challenges and stay permanently informed – through their wide contacts network – about the community needs and expectations. In this way the UTF will, at any given time, be able to take up matters into debate and possibly suggest ways of overcoming difficulties and dealing with new urban development issues.
The Satu Mare Urban Task Force will designate a president and a secretary for each regular meeting, while for extraordinary meetings the president and the secretary will be designated by the 5 initiators from among themselves.
There will be no differentiation between UTF members, they will assume tasks according to their individual domain of expertise, influence capacity and availability for commitment.
The Satu Mare Urban Task Force will monitor, as a body, the implementation of the Strategic Agenda. According to the flexibility principle stated above, it will be their decision to set up thematic or project-based workgroups whenever they deem necessary. Moreover, the open character of the partnership allows them to resort to the help of other specialized actors willing to take up individual tasks.We are aware that ensuring a long-term participatory process in urban development is an even more difficult task, but we do count on the already established relations and work atmosphere within the group to play an important role. The more than democratic way the UTF partnership agreement is conceived will also definitely help maintain this positive atmosphere. Other than that, we will try to keep people motivated by showing appreciation for their efforts, by making sure that as many as possible of their ideas and projects get implemented, by small incentives like, maybe offering training, organizing social events, ensuring publicity for their work.

Temerin Urban Task Force

The TemerinUrban Task Force has been made up from a university professor of Regional studies, a traffic engineer, an urbanist, an architect, a civil engineer, a regional development specialist, a business cluster manager, an industrial designer, an economist and a lawyer. All members of the UTF have been involved the elaboration of the Territorial Strategic Agenda. They have collected enough material and practice to be the most appropriate group of people for the challenging job of nurturing the implementation of the strategy, of detecting necessary adjustments or proposing new ways of handling unanticipated future problems or challenges for urban development.
We have decided to shape the UTF as a non-formal association of likely minded individuals with the primary mission of proselytising the ideas, methods and tools built into the Strategy, but who will also keep an eye on the evolution of things, on trends, opportunities, challenges and stay permanently informed – through their wide contacts network – about the community needs and expectations. In this way the UTF will, at any given time, be able to take up matters into debate and possibly suggest ways of overcoming difficulties and dealing with new urban development issues.
In its current state the Temerin Urban Task Force has no formal structure; therefore it does not have a chairperson, secretary, rules of procedure and similar amenities. We are aware that in the future the sustainability of the UTF can require the establishment of a more formal body.

Herceg Novi Urban Task Force

The Urban Task Force emerged from the participatory approach developed and executed throughout the project development. In the inception phase and during the first meetings the participants came mostly from the public sector, NGOs and citizens groups. However, over the course of the project the involvement of stakeholders got a more formal structure and gradually created a base for starting the UTF.
The Herceg Novi UTF gathers representatives of the Public sector , NGOs, civic group’s members, planning and engineering experts, professional association representatives and National bodies’ representatives. Most of the UTF members participated in the STATUS workshops or were informed about the project’s development via media, in professional meetings or in direct contacts with the STATUS team members. They have, therefore, the required capacity and knowledge for monitoring the implementation of STA, and may also be involved in the STA’s mid-term reviews and possible adjustments, as well as in providing assistance in solving unforeseen challenges over the agenda’s lifetime.

Balti Urban Task Force

The Urban Task Force was created in the frame of the 2nd and 3rd workshop of the STATUS project. During the meeting, the "Regulation on the functioning of UTF" and "Partnership Agreement" were drafted, with the experts involved in the working groups. The stakeholders who took part in the workshops are part of the UTF. Furthermore, the administration of the City Hall of Balti Municipality will support all the efforts of the UTF team experts.
The UTF, which consists of "Expert Teams" (ET), are divided in 3 working groups:
ET 1 - economic field: experts in the field of economic, finance and banking, business, tourism, infrastructure, architecture, law, trade, environmental protection
ET 2 - socio - cultural field: experts in the field of education, social assistance, culture, tourism, infrastructure, architecture, law, environmental protection, health, sports, youth
ET 3 - the public space field: experts in the field of architecture, urbanism, infrastructure, land, cadastre, land planning, legal, environmental protection, urban transport and other public services

Drama Task Force

In the very early stages of the project we launched a very active campaign to bring into the implementation picture as many stakeholders as possible. Due to the nature of our organization we involved many enterprises and this was a useful practice because we managed to collect many valuable ideas about the needs of the enterprises in supportive services and assistance for growth activities. Furthermore, we involved the Urban Planning Department of the region of Drama and the Technical Services of the Drama Municipality. Moreover, independent engineers, architects and urban developers participate in the early stages of the project and in the workshops organised within the STATUS project implementation needs. The Mayor who was well informed about the project and supported our activities – Drama Municipality was initially a partner in the STATUS project. Furthermore, the Deputy Mayor of the Municipality who is an urban developer participated in the works of the STATUS project. Last but not least, in our team of project implementation we had token participation from the Technical Chamber of Greece, the Department of the Region of East Macedonia – Thrace. Of course, the administration and staff of the Drama Chamber of Commerce and Industry supported all the efforts of the STATUS project implementation team.
All these participants to the various stages of STATUS project are candidates to participate in the Urban Task Force to be created by the project in Drama.

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