Title : New gOvernance for New spAces

Acronym : NONA

Funding program : Danube Region Programme

Topic: 4.2: Increased institutional capacities for territorial and macro-regional governance

Project Code : DRP0200519

Project budget : 2,960,195.00 EUR

Lead Applicant  : Geodetic Institute of Slovenia

Project duration : 30 months (01.01.2024 – 31.06.2026)

The project in brief

Unsustainable land use is threatening quality living areas in the Danube region. There is a need to re- evaluate the value and potential of existing assets, including degraded areas (Das), to prevent new land take. Revitalisation of DAs can contribute to a more sustainable territorial development. The process is hindered by lack of capacities and efficient governance to mainstream investment in new, greener, more responsible land use in line with ecosystem capacities.

NONA’s main objective is to develop a new multi-level governance model for mainstreaming green investment into sustainable territorial development in the Danube region. By functional cooperation of public authorities, civil society, and the private, investment and financial sectors, the model will lead to improved capacities of cities and regions for triggering and implementing investments into more responsible land use practices as a basis for a new green and just economy.

This will be achieved by delivering a robust, scalable Model for Green Investment, a set of tools that will empower cities in the Danube region for mainstreaming green investment. The model will be developed through bottom-up participatory processes on 3 different spatial scales in 10 pilot areas, reflecting the diversity of socio-economic realities in the Danube region. It will be upscaled and mainstreamed through the NONA Academy, supporting local communities in the Danube region in planning and funding their green and just transition processes, and enabling access to green investment through the Danube Green Investment Hub.

The project offers a new outlook on development. It delivers a new governance model to support the implementation of a paradigm shift in development planning, opening opportunities for both the public, the private and the investment and financial sector to re-evaluate investment principles and recognise the potential of green investment for achieving more sustainable territorial development in the Danube region.

NONA is the flagship project of the New European Bauhaus on the Danube NEB Lab which aims to showcase in practice concrete solutions that enable the green transition in line with NEB values in the Danube region.

The role of URBASOFIA

URBASOFIA will be SO 2 leader, as well as one of the main knowledge providers, especially with respect to developing localized place-based models for green investors through a participatory methodology, supporting in addition the territorial partner C-EDU in deploying the pilot actions in Cluj-Napoca Metropolitan Area, Romania.

We will have a vital role in development of place-based governance models for enabling green investments for sustainable territorial development, participating in the development of the common methodology into Model for Mainstreaming Green Investments into Reuse of Degraded Areas for Strategic Spatial Planning in Support of a New Economy.

URBASOFIA will particularly be involved in the testing at urban-rural functional area level (Activity 2.1), and will contribute to participatory-led pilots in mid-sized and small cities as well. Furthermore, URBASOFIA will be involved in the international community exchange and provide knowledge for the NONA Academy, while also participating in general communication and management. I

In light of the Green Deal and NEB, URBASOFIA involvement in the NONA project and the knowledge derived from testing realistic models to fast-track land reuse in different contexts will offer extremely valuable insights into how to unlock land potential and how to include this methodology in planning services from the future. Further more, NONA project will enable transfer and upscale of the results from AGORA project, building the capacity for effectively involving, connecting and empowering a wide group of stakeholders in the reintegration of vacant buildings and land, public and private, into the productive city value system. For Romania, and particularly for the selected pilot of Cluj-Napoca, with which URBASOFIA has cooperated before with in developing the Metropolitan Strategy and DTP AGORA project, there is a potential of a high benefit to fill the gaps with respect to the actual „how” of unlocking land.