Accession to the European Union and physical (spatial) planning in Croatia
In: Croatian Accession to the European Union: Facing the Challenges of Negotiations
The increasingly rapid pace of social and economic development often brings different forms of land use (for residential, industrial or leisure and recreational purposes) into conflict. Since the territory does not close with the administrative boundaries of municipalities, cities, regions and the country itself, there are increasingly numerous demands for the space to be considered in a broader context, from the local to the European, in order to avoid disharmonies, adverse impacts and also to preserve individual values. Handling territorial problems and the planning of space do not refer just to the planning and harmonisation of various land uses, the protection of the environment, the natural and cultural heritage, but also impinge on the economy, law, social and welfare matters and science and politics. Since territory has become a new dimension of EU policy, the spatial development of the Union is one of the topics that have gained in importance in recent years. Accordingly, at EU level, institutions are being organised and documents developed and adopted to spur the harmonisation of country spatial policies, the planning of sustainable development, the preservation of individual diversities, and collaboration. Croatia too will be required to become acquainted with these documents and to apply them. The objective of this paper is to assess where physical planning is in Croatia as compared with the spatial development of EU member states, and whether Croatia has the strength to change its way of thinking, behaving and working in this domain, in order to be able to play an equal part in the creation of the European space.
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