New online toolbox for infrastructure projects within the TEN-T framework

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The TEN-T and the North Sea Region (TEN-TaNS) project successfully demonstrated a first version of its online toolbox during an open session workshop at the North Sea Region Programme Conference 2014 in Aberdeen. The toolbox will assist regional and local administrations in positioning their projects within the TEN-T framework.

The first edition of this toolbox includes examples from areas in which regional and local authorities from the North Sea Region can both have an impact and meaningfully contribute to the completion of the TEN-T network. The toolbox collates the project’s research and guides regional and local stakeholders through the information jungle.

Users will be able to filter the content of the toolbox according to their own special fields of interest respective to a transport mode (Rail, Inland Waterways, Road, Maritime, Air, or Multimodal) and a cluster theme (Nodes and Connections, Road Infrastructure, Maritime, Urban Nodes, Efficient Logistics, Sustainability and Innovation). Once the special interest field is selected the toolbox provides the relevant information from the project’s research:

o Suggested focus areas for regional/local involvement in the TEN-T framework completion.
o Relevant sections of the TEN-T legal framework.
o European and national legislation covering examples from the North Sea Region.
o European funding possibilities and in some examples national financial aid.
o A list of similar projects ongoing in the relevant field of interest.
o TEN-TaNS case studies which illustrate the use of the toolbox and focus on concrete regional measures and impact areas.

The final online toolbox is expected to be fully operational by the end of 2014, until than demo case studies can be found.

Having attended the TEN-TaNS workshop session, Christian Byrith, Head of Secretariat for the the Interreg North Sea Region Programme, stated: “The programme is very much looking forward to the successful launch of the TEN-TaNS toolbox to support administrations on local and regional level to better connect their areas and their planning with the Trans-European Network for Transport (TEN-T) schemes. The European policy goals for the TENT-T are designed to close gaps in the transport networks between Member States, to remove bottlenecks hampering the functioning of the internal market and to overcome existing technical barriers.”

The Interreg North Sea Region Programme has increased the funding for and duration of the TEN-TaNS project latest. Two more partners are now included in the expanded partnership: Møre og Romsdal County Council (Norway) and Örebro Region (Sweden). Project Manager Philip Smart said: “This is a fantastic endorsement of our objectives and comes at just the right time, complementing the launch of our first outputs. We are greatly encouraged by both this and user’s reactions at the exhibition to delegates at the North Sea Region Programme Conference.“

TEN-TaNS is one out of 83 projects funded through the North Sea Region Programme (www.northsearegion.eu), fostering European cooperation among the regions surrounding the North Sea. TEN-TaNS is currently looking into the development of the TEN-T networks and how this can be supported and coordinated by public authorities and infrastructure providers at the regional level. The project partners are: Aberdeenshire Council (UK), Association of Danish Transport and Logistics Centres (DK), Flemish Ministry of Mobility and Public Works (BE), Møre og Romsdal County Council (NO), Örebro Region (SE), Port of Hamburg Marketing (DE) and Edinburgh Napier University (UK).

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