Case Study - Republic of Moldova, Cahul District


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A brief history of approaches, methods and techniques of urban regeneration in historic centres

Author: V. Ajder

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Case Study - Republic of Moldova, Cahul District

  1. 1. General data about Cahul District• Surface -1545 km²55 settlements: 1 town, 54 villages• Population – 123 900 inhabitants:Urban-39 000, rural-84 900• Distanţe:Cahul – Chişinau - 175 kmCahul – Odessa - 315kmCahul – Ismail - 127kmCahul – Reni - 60 kmCahul - Galaţi - 60km• Roads - 1057,9 km including:- 170,37 km national roads- 887, 53 km local roads.• Transport networks: - internațional harbour Giurgiuleşti - Chișinău - Cahul – Giurgiuleşti railroad - internaţional airport CahulChișinău - Cahul – Giurgiuleşti national road
  2. 2. Towns and villages included in project activities• Cahul• Colibasi• Valeni• Slobozia Mare• Borceag
  3. 3. Towns and villages included in project activitiesCahul• 39000 inhabitants• the only urban settlement in the District• 175 km from Chisinau• 6 km from the border with Romania• 35 km from the Ukrainian border• Important strategic position• Little diversification of the local economyHistorical monuments: St. Archangels Mihail and Gavriils Cathedral (1851), the Russian orthodox old rite church "AcoperamantulMaiciiDomnului" (1892), the house of the writer Alexandru Lipcan (1908), the Museum of Cahul County (second half of the 19th century), the net of underground cellars
  4. 4. ”B.P.Hasdeu” State Iniversity in Cahul
  5. 5. ” Sf. Mihail și Gavriil” Church
  6. 6. Old rite orthodox church
  7. 7. Towns and villages included in project activitiesColibasi• the largest village in the District• population 6030 people• agriculture - the main economic sector• industry limited to food processing, a wine making companyArhtectural heritage:• orthodox church Saint Michael (XIX c.)• remains of a Roman defensive wall (Trajan wall)
  8. 8. Towns and villages included in project activitiesSlobozia Mare• population 5960 (2004 census)• agriculture - the main economic sector• industry limited to food processing• Well preserved intangible cultural heritage• A museum representing the development of the settlement, its history and culture
  9. 9. Towns and villages included in project activitiesValenipopulation of 3021 inhabitantsagriculture - the main economic sectorclose to “Prutul de Jos” Scientific Reservea traditional bakerya folk festival is organizad annually
  10. 10. Towns and villages included in project activitiesBorceag• 62 north from Cahul• 137 km from Chisinau• population - 1602 inhabitants (2004 census)• Well known “Grape Valley” wine making company (est. 1890)• ...and old sellars built by French barons
  11. 11. PopulationCahul district’s population - 119 231, out of which:• urban population – 39 000 people;• rural population – more than 80 000 people
  12. 12. Landscape and environment
  13. 13. Protected areas
  15. 15. Intangible heritageThe most visible expression of the intangible cultural heritage takesthe form of various festivals, feasts and celebrations.Cahul town and many of the District’s villages organize folk festivals,some of them having long traditions.The major festivals organized here are:„Dumitru Botgros”, „Nufărul Alb”, „Bobocelul”, „Feţe de prieteni”,„Horele bucuriene” şi „Dulce floare de salcâm”.Besides, Wine festivals are organised in many places in Moldova,usually in October.
  16. 16. ”Chipuri de prieteni””Bobocelul” ”Nufărul Alb”
  17. 17. ”Nufărul-Alb” Festival (Cahul)
  18. 18. SWOT of Cahul District areaStrengths•Rich cultural heritage (folklore, handicrafts etc.);•International festivals organized in the area;•Geographical situation (border with Romania and Ukraine);•Existence of an international harbor on Danube and an airport;•High proportion of municipal ownership over land in the area;•Rich natural heritage (Natural Park, protected areas, mineral waters and a Spa resort(Sanatorium));•Traditions in wine making, possibility to develop wine routes;•Existence of a university in Cahul;•Several minorities inhabiting the area who preserve their culture and language.
  19. 19. SWOT of Cahul District areaWeaknesses•Very limited municipal budgets;•Poor infrastructure;•Short term vision of local administration;•Fragmented ownership over the land;•Lack of adequate Public-Private Partnership (PPP) experiences in any fields:urban development, tourism or culture;•Low economic activity and little diversification;•Low degree of urbanization;•Tourism potential in the region is almost unused;•Often periods of political instability•Urban development is rather chaotic, especially in smaller towns
  20. 20. SWOT of Cahul District areaOpportunities•Economic recovery of the country;•Free trade agreement with EU that will be signed in the near future;•Raising FDI attractiveness of Moldova;•Access for more EU financial assistance;•Develop and capitalize the tourism and culture potential of the region;•Territorial development through a regional policies approach
  21. 21. SWOT of Cahul District areaThreatsA new economic crisis;National political instability;Continuous emigration caused by social and economicreasons;Lack of continuity of local political agenda
  22. 22. Local stakeholders involved1. Cahul county municipalities: Cahul, Valeni, Colibasi, Borceag, Slobozia Mare;2. Cahul County Council – Cultural Department;3. Central/national institution dealing with territorial development, cultural heritage and tourism issues - Ministry of Construction and Regional Development;4. Small and medium enterprises and business support institutions dealing with heritage;5. NGOs from Cahul region;6. Cahul State University;7. Cultural Associations
  23. 23. STUDIES, STRATEGIESLocal Strategies• Programme for social and economical development of Cahul District (2012-2015)• Strategy for tourism development in Cahul District (2012- 2015)• Strategy on Sustainable Development of Cahul municipality „Local Agenda 21” (2005-2015);• In villages only some short action plans exist;
  24. 24. STUDIES, STRATEGIESNational strategies, ProgrammesNational Program “Moldovan Village” (2005-2015). It’s majorobjective is sustainable socially oriented development focusing on ruralareas.The program was too ambitious compared to available means.After independence, integrated urban development was totallyinexistent in government policies. To present day the Govermnet hasntformulated a spatial development srategy. Last document of this kindwere elaborated in 80s, during the Soviet era.
  25. 25. Other initiativesEstablishing the National Centre for Human Settlements"Habitat Moldova Centre" (UNDP supported) in December 2005Main activities:• Capacity building of main actors at national and local level involved in urban development process;• Advocacy and awareness;• Policy advice, consulting and technical assistance;• Informational support (including “Urban Moldova” magazine);• Monitoring and Evaluation (yearly bulletin “Cities of Moldova”: informational base for policy makers, researches, and citizens, civil society)
  26. 26. Concept on urban developmentof Republic of Moldova - Project"Mesmerizing Moldova" UNDP
  27. 27. Other initiativesKyiv Initiative: Pilot Project on the Rehabilitation of CulturalHeritage in Historic TownsMain activities:1. Political and Technical Management2. Heritage Assessment Reports3. Priority Intervention Towns4. Preliminary Technical FileResults:• Setting up of political back up and technical management structures• Publication of Heritage Assessment Reports• Development of a regional network of professionals and towns• Elaboration and implementation of the Diagnosis methodology• Public Awareness / communication
  28. 28. Some other initiativesHist.Urban – Integrated revitalization of historical towns topromote a polycentric and sustainable development (CADSESProgramme)Main activities:Developing and implementing integrated and practice-orientatedrevitalization approaches (concepts, plans and guidelines). Throughtransnational actions (conferences, workshops) they exchange theirexperiences and results, linking the local activities.Results:The results of Hist.Urban are summarized in a transnational manual onintegrated revitalization approaches for historical towns, demonstratingspecial revitalization strategies and instruments and giving advice todecision makers on their successful implementation.
  29. 29. Some other initiativesProject - Integrated Urban Development of Vital Historic Townsas Regional Centres in South East Europe (ViTo)Main activities:Work Package 1 – Transnational Project management and CoordinationWork Package 2 – Communication and disseminationWork Package 3 – Start-ups and analysisWork Package 4 – Integrated planning process and approachesWork Package 5 – Management of revitalizationResults:An analytical framework for integrated and spatially embedded revitalisationpracticesDevelopment of methods for planning and implementing revitalisation projectsIntegrated revitalisation plans for historical areas/centresPilot projects pronouncing visible resultsEtc.
  30. 30. Major challenges• Ruralization of the country (urban population: 1990 - 47.4% 2011 - 41.0%);• Huge discrepancies between vigurous economical and social indicators in Chisinau and the stagnation in the rest of the cities;• Low attractivity of small towns (for investors, people etc.)• Little atention of central authorities towards national policies in integrated urban development• Still imperfect legislation (limited fiscal descentralization, no focus on cities with potentioal to become growth poles etc.)
  31. 31. Possible solutions• Elaborate a national long term strategy on urban development;• Speed up reforms in administrative sector• Adapt the legislation to facilitate an equitable development of cities and towns on the whole territory of the country;• To modify regional development strategies to include integrated urban development at the core of regional programmes;• Allocate sufficient funds to implement those programmes;• Focus on cities with greatest potential to become regional growth poles;
  32. 32. Thank you for your attention!