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Community Development with Resident Participation in Heidelberg, Germany <Article>
Community development means "Machi-zukuri" in Japanese. It is a word with multiple meanings. It is used to mean urban improvement, regional revitalization, town planning, and community development. In this paper, we define 'machi-zukuri' as a collaborative action of residents and the local government to make a community or to develop a town. We focus the urban redevelopment, with resident participation in Heidelberg, Germany. That's why the municipal government encouraged the attendance of residents in town planning. We try to clarify the system of resident participation.
In Heidelberg, when the municipal government makes a town plan, collaboration between the municipal government planners and the residents who are chosen by the community is necessary. In the process of making a plan, the residents and NGO members propose and present their plans in their workshops. After the workshops, the planners in municipal governments and the mayor of Heidelberg estimates and decides which plans are to be enforced. From an interview for participants in a work shop in Bergheim, they discussed on the layout plan in this area, especially the layout of houses and the park.
For the Bergheim area of Heidelberg, some problems are clarified as follows;
1. The structure of each section in the planned area was not diversified into age structures, socio-economic structures, or ethnic structures. The residents in the planning region rejected to supply social houses for economically weaker families.
2. The structures of the participants in workshops were not diversified yet. The participants were selected by local (bezirk) committee. That's why they are appropriated by the conclusion of the municipal assembly election.
In southern Germany, the mayor also holds the post of chairman. This system makes the mayor the key person in the town planning and the plan is influenced by the election and political condition. 'Machi-zukuri' depends on the key person who is elected by the citizens.