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Vilnius adopts General Plan for the next 15 years

Vilnius adopts General Plan for the next 15 years

The strategic blueprint envisages more green areas and sustainable mobility options, as well as stricter building standards

Vilnius City Council unanimously approved on 2 June the new General Plan (GP) of the Lithuanian capital, along the lines of which the city will live and develop for the next 10–15 years. What the strategic blueprint boils down to is that Vilnius will become more convenient for pedestrians and cyclists, there will be more green areas, and the height and quality of buildings will be more strictly controlled. 

Strategic directions 

In the general plan, the main strategic directions of the city’s development have been laid down: sustainable mobility, comfortable residential areas, development of southern Vilnius. This means that in the future, a lot of attention will be paid to the establishment of more stringent architectural rules and street standards.  

The General Plan also reflects the principles of the City + programme which include development of green spaces, modernization of residential areas, and development of social infrastructure. As before, much attention will be paid to developing hiking and cycling trails, upgrading the public transport network and improving the sharing economy. 

“Vilnius is a growing, young and dynamic city, combining ambitions of growth with an impressive natural and cultural heritage, and this is a guarantee of our city's successful future. To put all this into a legal document was the main goal of the general plan,” said Mayor Remigijus Šimašius, as quoted by the city website. 

According to the mayor, although the preparation of the master plan has been stuck in red tape, it has taken into account useful feedback not just from the city institutions, but also from many citizens.

Meeting the needs of today 

Municipal company Vilniaus Planas started preparing a new General Plan in 2016 when it became clear that the old document no longer meets today's needs, with a growing number of citizens choosing housing closer to the city centre, which also fuelled the demand for new office spaces, shopping and entertainment facilities.

“Over the last few years, we have been planning the city the hard way, using the old master plan, which only sets out the strategic guidelines for urban development. So we tried implementing new planning solutions that are more people-specific and future-proof,” recalls the city's chief architect Mindaugas Pakalnis. "Real estate developers have not always been happy with this, but in most cases, we had the support of residents whom we have defended against new development plans that do not meet the standards of the living environment. 

Instead of 18 generalized functional zones for the whole city, the new General Plan incorporates as many as 3,300 different quarters, where regulations are determined according to the prevailing indicators - height, building density and intensity, building-specific principles of construction and public space formation. This will help to better preserve the uniqueness of each quarter and the way of life of its residents. The boundaries of green areas and areas with social infrastructure are also specified in the new plan.



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