Rapid Planning

Sustainable urban development is facing similar challenges in almost all fast-growing metropolises in emerging and developing countries, regardless of the social or political situation: There is a lack of usable planning data. At the same time, however, rapid and efficient planning processes are required which can be adapted flexibly to suit rapid population growth and urbanisation.

This requires the research project “Rapid Planning – sustainable infrastructure, environmental and resource management for highly dynamic metropolitan regions”, which is receiving funding of €12 million from the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) from 1 September 2014 for a period of five years. Twelve project partners from academia and practice are developing fast-acting planning methods for rapidly growing cities which link the sectors of energy, water, wastewater, solid waste and urban agriculture. The work is based on practical experience in the sample cities of Kigali (Rwanda), Da Nang (Vietnam) and Assiut (Egypt); the newly developed planning methods will be tested and implemented directly in these locations.

The BMBF project will be carried out in 15 work packages encompassing the analysis of specific spatial data and structures at urban and regional level, the development of a methodology in the field of urban infrastructure, and the involvement of stakeholders from city administrations, public organisations, research institutions and private sector. The transferability of the methods to other cities is also an objective to ensure that the new integrated planning approaches can also be used in other municipalities. The project partners are creating “Rapid Planning Toolbox” which will contain all of the results, experiences and suggestions. In the long term, the “Rapid Planning” methods are expected to initiate a change of views and new action in terms of resource-efficient planning in the participating municipalities.

The project is based on the findings of the BMBF-funded “Future Megacities” research programme completed in 2013.

IFEU is responsible for the following tasks:

  • Coordination of research activities in the sample city of Kigali (Rwanda)
  • Internal evaluation of the overall project
  • Sector-specific data collection with local partners
  • Creation of a planning tool for material flow management (MFA)
  • Reviewing the transferability of the results, knowledge transfer, and utilisation of the results


September 2014 – August 2019


German Ministry of Education and Research BMBF


AT-Asscociation, association for the promotion of socially and environmentally appropriate technologies, Stuttgart (project coordinator)

UN-Habitat (United Nations Human Settlements Programme), Nairobi

Institute for Future Energy Systems (IZES), Saarbrücken

Institute for Automation und Communication Magdeburg (IFAK)

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences

University of Stuttgart

Technical University of Berlin

Brandenburg Technical University, Cottbus

Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences, Suderburg

Institute Eco-Industrial Analysis (IUWA), Heidelberg


Kigali Entry Project (pdf, 896 KB)


Green Buildings (pdf, 1.008 KB)


Transsectoral Synergies (pdf, 423 KB)