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Brussels, 22 November 2001

Urban II programme: European Union contributes EUR 4.2 million for urban regeneration in Vienna Erdberg, Austria

During a visit to Austria, Mr Michel Barnier, Commissioner responsible for regional policy, today announced the approval by the European Commission of a programme for urban regeneration in Vienna Erdberg, Austria. This URBAN(1) Community Initiative Programme will provide € 4.2(2) million from the European Union over the period 2000-2006. The European funding has attracted € 10.3 million in further investment from the public sector and € 1.4 million from the private sector, creating total resources of € 15.9 million. Priorities will include development of the potential of the information society, urban development and communication measures.

Announcing the decision, Michel BARNIER said: "The URBAN Community Initiative is a creative and innovative approach to urban regeneration. These programmes have a strong "grassroots" emphasis, involving local people at all stages in the decision making process. The programme for the city of Vienna is no exception. It mobilises a strong local partnership and I fully endorse the programme priorities. I am confident that this programme will make a substantial contribution to urban regeneration in the city of Vienna."

The programme area covers the southern part of the city of Vienna (part of the 3rd and the 11th district of Vienna, of which the centre is the "Erdberger Mais") with a population of 22,800. The area forms part of an industrial area in decline and is experiencing a downward trend of economic activity, high unemployment, a high level of immigrants, insufficient implementation of equal opportunities, a low level of education, social exclusion and environmental damage.

The programme aims to tackle these problems with two main priorities:

  • Development of the economic base within the Urban area ("ENTWISTAN"). This priority is aimed at support of small and medium-sized enterprises and local area management (Community contribution about € 1.8 million ).

  • Development of urban diversity ("URBAVIEL"). The setting-up of organisations for the integration of ethnic groups, immigrants and refugees, promotion of equal opportunities, development of public spaces, improvement of the environment and conservation of the cultural heritage (Community contribution about € 2.4 million).

An additional amount of € 0.08 million (Community contribution) will finance technical assistance.

As with all URBAN programmes, this programme will be funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the responsibility of Mr Barnier.


The goal of the URBAN Community Initiative is "economic and social regeneration of cities and of neighbourhoods in crisis in order to promote sustainable urban development". The second round of URBAN ("URBAN II") will cover the period 2000-2006, supporting 70 deprived urban areas across the EU. Total funding from the EU alone will be € 743,6 million and this will attract at least as much again in matched funding from both public and private sectors.

The total URBAN allocation for Austria amounts to € 8.4 million. Programmes have been submitted for Vienna and Graz.

A particular feature of URBAN II is the development of innovative models for urban regeneration. Another feature is a strong emphasis on partnership and on involving local actors. There will also be an exchange of information and experience on sustainable urban development across the European Union.

URBAN II is financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Funding is available for initiatives such as the renovation of buildings and public spaces, local employment initiatives, the improvement of education and training systems for disadvantaged groups, the development of environmentally friendly public transport systems, the introduction of more efficient energy management systems and the use of renewable energy, developing the potential created by information society technologies.

The Commission adopts programmes which are proposed by a partnership including local and community groups. These programmes run for the whole of the period 2000-2006 and local actors are involved at all stages in this process.

Managing Authority

Magistrat der Stadt Wien Magistratsabteilung 27 EU-Förderungen

Schlesingerplatz 2

A-1080 Wien

Phone: +43 1 4000 82581

Fax:  +43 1 4000 7215


Further information

More detailed information on URBAN II be found in MEMO/01/301 of 25 September 2001 or at the following website :

European Commission :

(1) See below for a description of URBAN II.

(2) Programming prices

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