"Frei_Raum_Stadt_Raum": model for the public space in Vienna

In summer 2007, Municipal Department 19 – Architecture and Urban Design (MA 19) launched an initiative aimed at drafting a strategy paper for public space in Vienna. The ambitious goal of the paper was not only to formulate substantive quality standards for the future, but at the same time to firmly establish these as the longer-term position of the city's planning authorities. The strategy paper was developed in the context of a dialogue process involving the City Administration, external academic experts and practitioners, and political representatives of the municipal districts. The cooperative process was managed by an internal working group of key members of the City Administration, assisted and supported by PlanSinn.
Immediately after completion of the paper it was decided that the working group should be kept going in order to start work on implementing the strategy. The first two subject areas selected were "Social spatial analysis as a preparatory phase for planning measures" and "Evaluating the design of public spaces". In the meantime pilot projects have been carried out on both topics and handbooks produced containing guidelines and instructions for action. Since 2012 the working group has been focussing its attention on two further topics: "Management concepts for public spaces" and "Provision of public spaces in Vienna's urban renewal areas".