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The landuse planning system


The landuse planning system is worth looking at. Spatial plans can have immediate consequences for decision-making, especially at the lower levels of government, because then plans will be very specific. Higher level plans are often just indicative.


The presence and regular update of plans can be prescribed by laws; they can also be produced as part of informal regulations. In many countries there is a nested physical planning system active: a general vision at the national level; more prescriptive plans at the provincial level and a detailed plan at the municipal level. Often a local physical plan proclaims which landuse functions are to be expected where, thus also stating which activities cannot be permitted.


Including BwN principles in the planning system and in specific policy plans can enhance the feasability of BwN options. Public support for BwN might also increase if BwN is acknowledged in plans. It enables referring to the BwN principles at an early stage of (re-) development. This integration into 'pseudo-regulation' increases the awareness of regulatory barriers for BwN. If implementation of politically supported ambitions is frustrated, this might initiate some change in the formal regulations. So advocating BwN principles and alternatives in the planning system might offer the ultimate pro-active strategy to advocate BwN.


Example of a part of a municipal spatial plan in Leiden. The different colours indicate different functions such as transport (white), housing (yellow) and green spaces (dark green)

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