Jointly working and learning of each other on EU-level:
INTERREG IIIC with Dorsten - Rybnik and Liévin
The fact that within the European Union economic co-operation exists is well-known from the private sector. But the fact that cities do not only celebrate and fraternise with one another but also seriously work together to solve the same or similar problems of economy and structural change is new: Within INTERREG IIIC, an EU-Programme to strengthen the social and economic cohesion, the cities of Dorsten, Rybnik in Poland and Liévin in the North of France cooperate in a project regarding the revitalisation of former mining and industrial sites with the objective of development those wastelands into active industrial estates: what one of them already achieved serves the others as visual aids for huge replacements in the context of structural change.
1. Dorsten, Northrhine-Westphalia, Germany: Project leader
The business promotion corporation "WinDor GmbH" (www.win-dor.de) aims at the improvement of the social and economic structure by portfolio servicing and new settlements. Additional tasks are the development and marketing of industrial estates.
Anke Borg, Stadt Dorsten
Ludwig Küpers, Stadt Dorsten
2. Rybnik, Wojewodschaft Silesia, Poland
The large city Rybnik (www.rybnik.pl), located in the South-West of Silesia, is a mining location for more than 200 years. In 1990 a structural change in the mining industry started in the frame of the political and economic change. 30 Silesian pits have been closed. In Rybnik nearly 190 ha become wasteland and 5.000 employees lost their jobs. Mining enterprises and the special unit Restructiring of CoalMines Company which in 100 % belong to the Tresury are the only responsible for developing of post mining industry lands. City of Rybnik has limited abilities in this area. Due to problems with central budget financing all responsible units carry out only the most necessary protecting works which don't include preparation for future investment.
Bartek Koziel, City Hall of Rybnik
3. Liévin, Nord-Pas de Calais, France
The small town Liévin (www.ville-liévin.fr), located in the North of the region Nord-Pas de Calais, was for over 100 years a mining location. The structural change already started in the 1960es. Between 1960 and 1980 totally 60 of 67 pits in the region have been closed. In Liévin the last active pit closed in 1974 after a mine accident. Totally 300 ha mining sites became wastelands and nearly 5.000 employees lost their jobs. Acom France is responsible for the process of structural change concerning the former mining sites in the region. Meanwhile the bulk of the sites is already brought to market and new uses. Thereby an economic diversification was aspired.