Spatial planning and development
Spatial planning and development play a crucial role in coordinating the development of cross-border regions. Attached to specific legal competences and levels of governance on either side of a border, it is a very complex field and still in its infancy.
Implementing cross-border development and infrastructure projects requires carrying out an initial phase defining the development goals for the cross-border territory. While border territories on numerous borders present physical continuities (cross-border conurbations, neighbouring natural areas...), they are governed by heterogeneous planning rationales; in planning and development documents, the border has long represented a cut-off point for the authorities that produced them.
Spatial planning and development at the cross-border level has proved to be very ambitious, due to the divergence of regulations, planning practices, urban planning cultures and languages between territories. Furthermore, no harmonisation of national approaches to spatial planning exists at the European level. The different planning cultures continue to shape conceptions of spatial planning.
With increasing cross-border mobility, coordination of planning practices is more and more necessary, in order to be able to bolster services and develop infrastructure without the border being an obstacle.