SEEDS – Stimulating Enterprising Environments for Development and Sustainability

A major challenge facing our towns and cities today is the blight of derelict buildings and empty spaces. Such vacant and derelict sites deter investment in declining areas and pose an increasingly urgent threat to national economic competitiveness. Reasons for sites remaining abandoned are varied. But while planning policies remain unco-ordinated, restrictive and often unimaginative, there will be no opportunity for innovative temporary solutions to play a part in long term planning and development. SEEDS wants to address the very clear need for revised planning policies by promoting innovative land-use strategies through temporary re-use of vacant sites. To do so will increase the likelihood of growth; encourage new investments; and help further develop both local and national economies.

Eight partners in six European countries

Working with eight partners in six countries, the SEEDS project aims to find innovative solutions to currently inflexible planning systems; stimulate exciting land use strategies; and overcome the reluctance of landowners/developers to free up their dormant sites.

Innovative spatial planning policy

SEEDS aims to promote the re-use of vacant sites, by working transnationally to implement innovative spatial planning policy instruments, and by stimulating regeneration and sustainability across the North Sea Region to create thriving locations in which to live, work and invest. Using its focus on re-use to tackle the needs of areas in decline, the project will address the North Sea Region IVB Program’s priority to deliver sustainable and competitive communities.

SEEDS will:

  • Commend a durable legacy of improved planning policies flexible enough to allow temporary re-use, and transferrable re-use strategies.
  • Establish dynamic partnerships between developers, owners, planners, commerce chambers, entrepreneurs and citizens.
  • Produce a range of recommendations, and endorse through a Re-use Charter.
  • Encourage temporary use of land and buildings as a catalyst for local investment and skills development for local people through small and medium enterprises, local entrepreneurs and start-ups.
  • Launch a pan-European Spatial Planning Forum that will strive to propose, promote and lobby for new co-ordinated spatial planning policies and frameworks; and ensure short term re-use becomes an important and accepted aspect of long term planning, development and local economic growth.