CoverA walk to the park? - assessing access to green urban areas in Europe's cities
Hugo Poelman
Comisión Europea, 2016

Green areas in cities, like parks, public gardens and nearby forests fulfil a variety of functions, ranging from ecological values to recreational functions. They also provide aesthetic value and they play a role in promoting public health. In a general way, these areas contribute to a better quality of life of the inhabitants.

The new working paper presents a methodology that takes into account the spatial distribution of both population and green areas throughout the cities' territory, and produces indicators on the proximity of the green areas to the urban population. To obtain comparable results, harmonised EU-wide data sources were used, like the Copernicus Urban Atlas land use data and census-based population figures at the highest spatial resolution possible. [+]

Quality of life in cities: Perception survey in 79 European cities
A survey was conducted in November 2012 to measure the local perceptions of quality of life in 83 cities. It includes cities in the 28 Member States of the European Union and cities in Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. In Spain: Barcelona, Madrid, Málaga y Oviedo. A number of issues such as employment, environment, housing, transport, culture, city services and immigration are addressed by this survey.
Since 1973, the Commission has been monitoring the evolution of public opinion in the Member States on a wide range of topics. I am pleased to present the new edition of a unique survey conducted since 2004 on how citizens perceive quality of life in their home cities. [+]

Jueves, 27 Diciembre 2012 23:00

Pise el freno, viviremos mejor

Pise el freno, viviremos mejor, por Patricia R. Blanco
Que nadie muera en las ciudades por culpa de un atropello. El deseo no es una utopía. O al menos no se aleja tanto de la realidad, porque en ciudades como Pontevedra ya lo han logrado. ¿Cómo? Reduciendo la velocidad máxima en toda la urbe a 30 kilómetros por hora. En un arrollamiento provocado por un vehículo que circula a esta velocidad, el peatón tiene un 95% de posibilidades de sobrevivir. Si es a 50 por hora, sus opciones de vida se reducen a un 55%. Por encima de 70, las estadísticas apuntan inevitablemente hacia la muerte. Todos los estudios al respecto certifican estos datos. ¿Sería entonces una idea descabellada imponer este límite en las ciudades? ¿O choca con otros intereses irrenunciables?
Un comité ciudadano europeo, liderado por la alemana Heike Aghte y del que forma parte una treintena de organizaciones, presentó en septiembre una Iniciativa Ciudadana Europea (ICE) para lograr que el límite máximo en todas las zonas urbanas residenciales de la UE sea 30 kilómetros por hora, una velocidad que ya han implantado varias ciudades y que otras estudian hacer. La Comisión Europea acaba de aceptar su registro. Si logran un millón de firmas en un año procedentes de al menos siete países europeos, la Comisión podría convertir la iniciativa en una ley de aplicación en todo el territorio comunitario. (El País, 28.12.2012)

CoverCities of tomorrow - Challenges, visions, ways forward
European Union, 2011.
ISBN: 978-92-79-21307-6. doi:10.2776/41803
More than two thirds of the European population lives in urban areas. Cities are places where both problems emerge and solutions are found. They are fertile ground for science and technology, for culture and innovation, for individual and collective creativity, and for mitigating the impact of climate change. However, cities are also places where problems such as unemployment, segregation and poverty are concentrated.
We need to better understand the challenges that different European cities will face in the years ahead. This is why I decided to bring together a number of urban experts and representatives of European cities to think about the future. This report is the outcome of that reflection.
It raises awareness of the possible future impacts of a range of trends, such as demographic decline and social polarisation, and the vulnerability of different types of cities. It also highlights opportunities and the key role cities can play in achieving EU objectives – especially in the implementation of the Europe 2020 strategy. It presents some inspirational models and visions. It also confirms the importance of an integrated approach to urban development. The ‘Cities of tomorrow’ reflection process will provide inspiration for policymakers and practitioners involved in urban development, whether at local, regional, national or European level. [+]

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