Current mobility patterns mean that many trips cross one or several municipal borders. This emphasises the need to integrate land-use and transport planning at regional functional scales. However, the Swedish planning system is characterised by a ‘municipal planning monopoly’, where local governments control the formal planning instruments. The lack of formal means for regional-level planning has sparked initiatives that can be characterised as soft spaces in planning. The paper analyses how soft space planning as spatial strategy making at regional level is influencing local-level planning. The analysis covers 10 municipalities in the Swedish Region of Skåne. The results illustrate that the dialogue-based process has established a broad consensus on the need to consider the regional scale in municipal planning. However, the results also show that the impact on planning is limited since the consensus-based process resulted in strategic objectives with limited influence on prevailing planning practices. Findings also illustrate that key concepts for operationalising the strategies – including densification and public transport accessibility – were defined and used differently in different municipalities. Consequently, a more stringent use, and stricter definitions, of core concepts could be a way to strengthen the capacity of soft space regional planning.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21650020.2016.1156020 under the license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
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Published on 01/01/2016

Volume 2016, 2016
DOI: 10.1080/21650020.2016.1156020
Licence: Other

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