New Leipzig Charta - The transformative power of cities for the common good
Europe has a wide variety of small, medium-sized and large cities. As part of a polycentric urban system, these are functional areas with varying potentials and challenges. European cities are more than places of densely arranged built structures, they also enable cultural, social, ecologic and economic interaction. Most cities are unique, historically grown centres of outstanding cultural value shaping Europe’s urban heritage and the identity of its citizens. Thus, culture is at the core of any sustainable urban development, including the preservation and development of the built and other cultural heritage.
Cities are places of pluralism, creativity and solidarity. Cultural and political traditions have been foundations for the development of cities reflecting democratic rights and values. Cities are also laboratories for new forms of problem-solving and testbeds for social innovation.
High-quality, open and safe public spaces function as vibrant urban places, allowing people to interact, exchange and integrate into society. Good urban planning and design should be reinforced to enable compact, socially and economically mixed cities with well-developed infrastructure and a healthy environment and opportunities for identification contributing to the well-being of all.