SUMPs in Estonia


In Estonia, during recent years, more attention has been paid to sustainability aspects in planning and transport development and the steps towards an approach to sustainable mobility planning have been taken. The rapid growth in private car use and urban sprawl has aroused the need to find new and more sustainable solutions. In recent years, important leaps have been taken in updating national transport and planning strategies towards sustainability. Local transport development plan is not required by a law, and the general urban development plan that the law on local government organisation requires is too broad to be considered an integrated SUMP. In currently updated national transport policy, urban and sustainable mobility issues have a central role. There is national planning guidance including also guidance on mobility planning in course of preparation. According to national institutions SUMPs should not be binding, and the guidance on mobility the Ministry of Interior is working on will also follow that line. In recently updated national energy strategy, energy efficiency measures in transport are also highlighted.

In spite of the shortage of national legislation, many cities have started to prepare voluntary plans for developing SUMPs and EU financing mechanisms play a significant role in funding them. Five bigger cities (Tallinn, Tartu, Narva, Pärnu and Kohtla-Järve/Jöhvi) with high potential of achieving working sustainable urban mobility system, as they already have quite high rates of the use of public transport, are aiming at developing SUMP process. Tallinn, Tartu and Pärnu have taking part of numerous projects related to sustainable mobility and have participated SUMP related trainings. In national workshops legislative issues about initiating and launching SUMP process are revealed to be the biggest challenge in sustainable urban mobility planning. There is also a question about the regional and administrative level at which the SUMP should be committed.

Source: Endurance project