SEA-PR for the Berlin Cycling Plan

Client: Senatsverwaltung für Umwelt, Verkehr und Klimaschutz Berlin
Period: 2021
Dimension: 891 km², Stadtgebiet Berlin

The Berlin Cycling Plan (Radverkehrsplan or RVP) serves to concretize the goals of the Berlin Mobility Act. Based on the mission statement “More people should ride their bikes. They should be safer on the road and also feel safer.” the RVP formulates strategic goals and action priorities for the development of cycling in the capital. An essential component of the RVP is the cycling network (Radverkejrsnetz or RVN), consisting of the priority network and the supplementary network with total lengths of about 865 km (priority network) and about 1,500 km (supplementary network). In addition, concrete quality standards are formulated for the design and usability of the cycle paths.

In the course of the preparation of the RVP, it had to be examined whether a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) had to be carried out for the plan. For this purpose, a preliminary assessment of the individual case pursuant to Section 35 (4) UVPG, a so-called SEA-PR, was carried out to determine whether the cycling plan is likely to have significant environmental impacts. An impact factor matrix was used to filter out those impacts of the cycling plan that could potentially lead to significant adverse environmental effects due to their intensity and/or spatial extent.

For the remaining impact factors, the overlap of the cycling network with various sensitive areas (e.g. nature reserves, bird sanctuaries, protected biotopes) was then used to determine whether significant environmental impacts were likely to be expected in the specific case. The main measure to avoid significant environmental impacts was the use of existing paths for the expansion of the cycling network as well as the suspension of quality standards in sensitive areas.