The closing event of the LP3LP project “Landscape Policy for the Three Countries Park”, which was financed by the EU’s ESPON programme, took place on May 2014 in the ‘Staatenzaal’ of the Dutch province of Limburg in Maastricht. The ‘Staatenzaal’ is a venue of historic significance, because it was here in 1992 that the Treaty on European Union, the Maastricht Treaty, was signed.
“This is a significant important place for us as well,” said Jan Houwen, project manager for the LP3LP project on behalf of the 3LP consortium, “and an important day today because cooperation in the Three Countries Park is now officially entering a new phase. “The project management of 3LP was passed from the Dutch province of Limburg to the Euregio Meuse-Rhine. Here, Dr Anja Brüll takes over the duties of the previous project manager Aad Blokland. The LP3P project established a solid foundation to refocus the cooperation in terms of content and structural renewal.
Besides euregional cooperation, Karl-Heinz Lambertz, [former] president of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine, also highlighted the cooperation with local initiatives: “It’s absolutely essential to seek contact with local authorities and grassroots organizations more than we have done to date. Their interest in and commitment to the preservation and development of Three Countries Park from a “quality landscape" to a “landscape of qualities” is crucially important. Let us live up to this vision and create more open space in the interest both of nature and of the people.”
The European level, i.e. what a ‘landscape approach’ can do for the European cohesion policy, was also a focus of interest. To this the LP3LP project has come up with some interesting answers, Peter Mehlbe, [former] director of the ESPON Programme, acknowledged.
In parallel with the programme, there was also an exhibition in the foyer of the province building, which made the results of the project available to the public. The book on the project was sent to all participants following the event and was presented at the 3LP landscape and green infrastructure forum.