Osnabrück’s “Green Fingers” – Adjusting Priorities to Sustain and Develop Greenways and Landscapes in a



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Osnabrück’s so called “Green Fingers” – eleven landscape corridors reaching from the inner city into the region – structure the regional metropolis’ urban pattern. They supply the city centre with fresh air, serve as recreational destinations for the city’s inhabitants and provide space for close to the city agriculture and forestry. First defined in 1926, the Green Fingers have since been part of various planning documents and programs. However, these open spaces have been diminished bit by bit over time. The city’s growing need for land to build on had its impact just like the development of major traffic routes. On the one hand a lively debate has emerged: the Green Finger’s qualities, their ecological, aesthetical and cultural significance become increasingly important. Yet on the other hand decision makers still tend to put greenfield building activity first. A lot of efforts in striving for inner development are undermined by the ever growing demand for space. The urban sprawl continues, although various kinds of sanctuaries have been added to the urban and landscape planners’ equipment. The growing urban framework with its semidetached and single family houses does not come to a halt.