German-French Planning Seminar 2014

Photo: The excursion group in the council chamber of the city of Hof. Photo: The excursion group in the council chamber of the city of Hof. Photo: The excursion group in the council chamber of the city of Hof.
The excursion group in the council hall of the city of Hof

Natural and cultural heritage in regional and urban planning in Upper Franconia

The German-French Planning Seminar, which is sponsored by the German-French Youth Office, serves as an annual exchange between students and teachers of the Institute for Environmental Planning of Leibniz University Hannover and the Spatial Planning Department of the Engineering School of the University of Tours. The seminars take place alternately in a German or a French region on current planning issues. Here, the participants not only get to know peculiarities of the countries, but also learn a lot about planning systems and politics.

This year, the exchange took place from October 5 to 11 in the Bavarian region of Upper Franconia. A total of 39 students participated. The seminar was led by Dr. Frank Scholles and Dipl.-Ing. Magrit Putschky from Hanover and Dr. Eric Thomas and Dr. Marc-André Philippe from Tours.

The French group traveled from Tours via Metz and met the German group in Würzburg, which arrived by train from Hanover. Together they went to the cultural heritage city of Bamberg. The group spent two days there, touring the city and listening to presentations on the World Heritage Site, Bamberg's urban planning, the conversion of very large military areas, and the planned new construction or expansion of the Munich-Berlin ICE line, which is to run through Bamberg.

The second day was dedicated to organic farming. To this end, the group visited the Fachzentrum Ökologischer Landbau, an organic farm in Laibarös in Franconian Switzerland and the Mussärol organic herb nursery.

On the third day, the group visited the government of Upper Franconia in Bayreuth, where they were informed about regional planning in Upper Franconia and wind energy planning in the planning region of Upper Franconia East. Afterwards, the group went to wind projects in different natural areas. In the evening, everyone reached Hof an der Saale.

In Hof, the group was welcomed by the mayor. The head of the planning office explained the city center concept and the chairman of the local German-French association gave a bilingual explanation of the history of the city on the former inner-German border. Afterwards, the group learned about several interesting urban planning projects in the city center on a guided tour. In the afternoon there was a tour of the German-German Museum Mödlareuth - a village with one part in Bavaria and the other part in Thuringia.

The last day was dedicated to the Fichtelgebirge Nature Park. At the Wunsiedel District House, there was first a brief introduction to regional projects and nature park work. Afterwards, several projects were explained in detail, including "Wildpark Waldhaus Mehlmeisel" and the "Upper Franconian Farm Museum Kleinlosnitz".

On Saturday, the tour departed from Hof back towards Würzburg and back to Hanover or Tours.