|GP: Transport and Sensitive Areas; an Example of the Lake Neusiedl Region - Austria|
Project Background and Objectives
The Vienna Declaration of the UNECE Conference on Transport and the Environment (Vienna 1997) defined 'sensitive areas' as a field of action requiring sustainable transport development. In these areas, special attention has to be paid to reducing the adverse health and environmental impacts of transport to acceptable limits.
Ecologically particularly sensitive areas constitute the weakest links in the chain of ecosystems and landscapes, which makes them a highly challenging issue for transport policy and system development, above all with a view to the planning of transport infrastructure.
The guiding principles for sensitive transport solutions in sensitive areas can be derived from the three basic pillars of sustainable development:
• Ecologically compatible by complying with environmental quality and health targets;
Developing a perspective for a sustainable and environmentally compatible transport development taking into account the requirements of sensitive areas:
The framework concept on which to base a transport development plan should start out from predefined environmental and health quality targets qualified with respect to the specific degree of ecological sensitivity. With a view to sustainable development and transport integration, these environmental and health targets should be treated equal in ranking with economic and social goals.
Determining transport development options and a suitable mix of measures for transport development in sensitive areas:
Transport systems in sensitive areas should be conceived to meet regional accessibility and mobility needs, and therefore should be restricted to providing the infrastructure to serve in- and outgoing traffic and mobility within the respective area. Supra-regional transit routes and transport corridors – especially road-based transport and transnational connections (highways, high-speed roads, high-speed railway lines, major airports) – should not be routed through sensitive areas.
Particular requirements on infrastructures in sensitive areas:
In ecologically particularly sensitive areas, priority must be given to promoting the use of eco-friendly means of transport combined in the so-called Umweltverbund, while at the same time improving the road infrastructure and road transport conditions so as to enhance environmentally compatible transportation.
The principles that govern all planning and implementation of infrastructure projects are to avoid immissions, keep land consumption low and protect the landscape. Land consumption and impairments of landscapes should be reduced to a minimum.
Recommended proposals for development and implementation are the following pilot projects:
Pilot project 1: Innovations in public transport
• Regional mobility on regular schedules (e.g. Lake Neusiedl Schedule) for optimum networking of railway, bus, taxi services, etc. and demand oriented public transport services, improved services to residential and commercial centres, bathing resorts along the lake and tourist attractions.
Pilot project 2: Cross-border regional mobility centre
• A “traffic and transport hub” for developing and optimising public transport services and an information centre on all soft mobility options and services with the key objective of customer oriented promotion of public transport.
Pilot project 3: Ecomobility for ecotourism
• Quality tourism through ecomobility for recreational tourism, mobility management for the National Park Lake Neusiedl and the planned Natural Park Leitha Mountain Range - Western Lake Shore. (“Cherry Region”)
Pilot project 4: + Company mobility management in regional key enterprises/Freight Logistics
• Transport efficiency and environmental improvement through soft mobility and rationalisation: for businesses, employees and the residential population.
Pilot project 5: New vehicle technologies and landscape tailored infrastructure
• Regional low-floor trains, bio-fuel propelled vehicles, electric cars, alternative propulsion technologies, etc.