Vlaamse Vereniging voor Ruimte en Planning (VRP)
Belgium (Flanders en Brussels region)
ECTP-CEU member since: 1985
Amount of own members: 388
President: Ann VERHETSEL
Delegate(s): Joris SCHEERS
Annual VRP reports to ECTP-CEU
Belgium’s projects presented by the VRP to the ECTP-CEU European and Regional Planning Awards:
2010 – 8th Edition:
• Antwerpen – Park Spoor Noord, City of Antwerp
2012 – 9th Edition:
• Antwerpen – Fort Lillo: Special Mention
2014 – 10th Edition:
• Antwerpen – Nieuw Zuid. Living in a sustainable quarter by the River Scheldt
• Limburg Genk – Limburg Territorial Development Programme: Winner
Country Factsheet for Belgium (.be)
ECTP-CEU Stage 2 Draft – Appendix 4 Draft Directory (2012-12-21)
General Country Information
Capital City Brussels
Population 11.720.716 (2020)
Area (km2) 30,510
Population Density 384 per km2
EU Membership Belgium joined what is now known as the EU as a founding member in 1957.
Belgium is currently a federal state, composed of three regions that have a high degree of autonomy, and three communities with exclusive competences. The three regions have exclusive competences in spatial planning. There is no national competency in spatial planning. This means that the two Belgian associations (VRP and CUB) cover the three regions, corresponding the languages spoken (i.e. Dutch in Flanders and Brussels and French in Wallonia and Brussels)
Belgium’s Ministry contacts:
Following the federal state of Belgium, Urban and Spatial planning are regionalized matters in Belgium, so the ministries are regional:
• for Brussels Region (official name : “Région de Bruxelles Capitale /Hoofdstedelijke Brussels Gewest”):
• for Wallonia (official name : « Wallonie », see “CUB”)
• for Flanders: Departement Omgeving
Planning as a Regulated Profession in Brussels Capital Region / Flanders
As Urban and Spatial planning are regionalized matters in Belgium; each of the country’s three regions (Flanders, Brussels-Capital and Wallonia) is competent for these matters within their respective territory.
The common professional name is “Spatial Planner” (“Ruimtelijk Planner”). However, the title is not protected nor is the profession recognized as such in Belgium. To develop planning legal documents, amenities specific to each of three regions are required and are issued by each of them.
EU Database Status:
The profession of planner in Belgium is therefore not included in the EU Database of Regulated Professions.
Each regional government regulates who may produce statutory plans. VRP is the operating body which regulate the profession. Candidates for inclusion in the register of Ruimtelijk planner must have a recognised third level degree from one of the Flemish educational institutes or from a comparable foreign institution
Universities with approved trainings in Belgium
The courses leading to the profession of Spatial Planner are 3rd level qualification.
Those courses are provided, in Belgium, by:
* Institut Supérieur d’U’banisme et de Rénovation Urbaine ISURU
* Artesis – Antwerp University Association: Faculty of Architectural Sciences, department Urbanism and Spatial Planning
* University – Gent: Department of Planning
* Katholieke Universiteit Leuven: Department ASRO
* Académie des Beaux Arts de la ville de Liège: Institut Supérieur d’Urbanisme et de l’Aménagement du Territoire
Example from “ECTP-CEU Draft Stage 2 Study on the Recognition of Planning Qualifications in Europe”:
Master of Urbanism and Strategic Planning at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven’s’Department Architectuur, Stedenbouw en Ruimtelijke Ordening (ASRO):
Here it is a two year course with a large part on Planning Product and less on the Social, Economic and Environmental issues.
Town Planning Press of Belgium
• Aménagement, environnement, urbanisme et droit foncier
• Cahiers de droit immobilier
• Commentaire systématique du CWATUP
• Guide de droit immobilier
• Jurimpratique : revue pratique de l’i’mobilier
• Res et jura immobilia
• Revue de droit immobilier
• Revue de droit immobilier- Tijdschrift voor onroerendgoedrecht
• Tijdschrift voor appartements en immorecht
• Tijdschrift voor bouwrecht en onroerend goed
Regional regulation in Flanders:
The main documentation about planning and territorial decisions lies in two fundamental documents:
• Spatial Policy Plan
• Mobility Plan Flanders
BELEIDSPLAN RUIMTE VLAANDEREN (Spatial Policy Plan):
Successor of “Ruimtelijk Structuurplan Vlaanderen” (Spatial Structure Plan), this new plan must give a picture of the future of Flanders in 2050. In order to make a careful use of the available space, and take into account environmental and energy issues, the plan has to involve every possible aspects to build the ideal spatial planning.
To achieve this goal, the involvement of all society levels has been implemented to the debate, with citizens, partners and others politics, to express opinions and preferences on the preparation paper.
MOBILITEITSPLAN VLAANDEREN (Mobility Plan Flanders):
It’s’a strategic plan for mobility, to promote the use of public transport and decrease car use. The purpose is to enhance the access to cities and villages, to ensure an equal access to mobility and improve the quality of life. It sets out policy guidelines to reach a sustainable mobility policy in Flanders.
• Regional Government Authorities (licensing and supervisory approval of regional and municipal documents)
• Municipal Authorities (approval of municipal documents)
PUBLIC PARTICIPATION AND COMMUNICATION:
Information, consultation and dialogue
Citizens must be informed by the local authorities, through the press (3 regional and local newspapers) and by display on the communal valves. This does not exclude other forms of communication; the choice is left to their discretion.
The consultation is organized at:
• the procedure for drafting / adoption of any planning document, coupled with an information session
• permit applications subject to publicity measures (with a notice addressed to residents)
• waiver requests (with a notice addressed to residents).
A consultation session can be considered under certain conditions (amount of people, ..)
A citizen may submit comments and suggestions in the context of this procedure.
Main Planning legislation
From “Vlaamse Codex Ruimtelijke Ordening”, Title 1, Chapter 1, Article 1.1.4:
“Spatial planning is geared to sustainable spatial development in which space is managed for the benefit of the present generation without compromising the needs of future generations. The space needs of the various social activities are weighed against each other simultaneously. It takes into account the spatial capacity, the consequences for the environment and the cultural, economic, aesthetic and social consequences. The purpose is to achieve high spatial quality”
VRP (Vlaamse Vereniging voor Ruimte en Planning): http://www.vrp.be/
Officiële Website van Vlaanderen: http://www.vlaanderen.be/nl
Ruimte Vlaanderen: http://www.beleidsplanruimte.be/
Department Leefmilieu, Natuur and Energie: http://www.lne.be/
Vlaanderen In Actie: http://www.vlaandereninactie.be/en
Open Repository and Bibliography: http://orbi.ulg.ac.be/
Transport Research and Innovation Portal: http://www.transport-research.info/
European Commission, Regulated Profession Database: http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/qualifications/regprof/index.cfm?action=homepage