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Regional cooperation

Regional cooperation

The city of Bonn and the Rhein-Sieg district, as well as the municipalities belonging to the district, have maintained close cooperation for many years, ranging from education and the development of skilled workers, through cooperation in transportation planning and land development, to environmental protection and joint services. In the Bonn/Rhein-Sieg/Ahrweiler region, regional cooperation spanning two federal states has also existed for more than two decades. Not only are joint trade fair appearances realized (such as at the Expo Real real estate trade fair), but there have also been tried and tested working relationships for years in supporting structural change in cluster approaches (such as the health industry or geoinformation) as well as in cooperation between business and science ("Bonn Science Region").

Regional area strategies

Against the background of the continuing massive pressure on land in the city of Bonn, the Rhein-Sieg district and the district of Ahrweiler, various regionally coordinated strategies and measures have been planned and initial steps have already been taken in the area of settlement and commercial land development:

Expert forums on regional commercial activities

The Regional Working Group Bonn/Rhein-Sieg/Ahrweiler (:rak) has so far organized two expert forums in the context of regional commercial activities (1. Inter-communal development of commercial areas and 2. Existing commercial areas).

A central statement on the development of commercial space at the 2nd Forum is that proactive and lasting action is needed. Politics, business development and urban planning must work together much more cooperatively than they have in the past. Existing commercial areas must receive much more attention in order to be able to generate successful maintenance of these areas. For more information, see: (opens in a new tab)


The project NEILA - Sustainable Development through Intercommunal Land Management in the Bonn/Rhein-Sieg/Ahrweiler Region is intended to help jointly resolve land use conflicts within the functionally closely networked region and to take into account the consequential effects and costs of settlement development from the outset. Based on many years of intermunicipal cooperation, the Bonn/Rhein-Sieg/Ahrweiler Regional Working Group (:rak) is striving for sustainable regional growth in the NEILA joint project in cooperation with the Technical University of Dortmund, the Institute for Regional and Urban Development Planning and the WWG Königswinter. NEILA is based on the assumption that an improved balance of interests between the federal city of Bonn, the closer urban surroundings and the rural area can only succeed if instruments and measures for sustainable land management and the reduction of (land) use conflicts are thought of in an integrated manner and coordinated inter-communally ("bottom-up"). The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) selected the NEILA joint project in a nationwide competition as part of the "Stadt-Land-Plus" funding measure. The project will run from 2018 to 2023.

Further information on the current status of the project is available on an ongoing basis at:

Intercommunal commercial space development Bonn/Alfter/Bornheim

The Bonn region is prospering. It is becoming more and more difficult, especially in the city of Bonn, to find suitable sites for companies interested in relocating, expanding or relocating. In order to keep companies and their jobs in the region and to attract new businesses, the designation of new (intermunicipal) commercial sites is indispensable.

The boards of Alfter, Bonn and Bornheim have decided to develop the Alfter Nord industrial estate, which covers around 28 hectares, in inter-municipal cooperation. The aim is, in particular, a settlement strategy based on partnership with a jointly defined utilization concept, an early exchange of information and co-determination regulations, especially with regard to the settlement of companies. The process design is supported by a "municipal working group", which accompanies a qualification. The open access for the development plan process is scheduled for the end of 2021. 

Intercommunal industrial site development between the cities of Bonn and Rheinbach

The "Am Wolbersacker" site is aligned with the future regional plan, which aims to designate land for commercial and industrial use by 2040. The basis for the inter-municipal cooperation is an expert opinion prepared by the office Stadt- und Regionalplanung Dr. Jansen GmbH. For the first time, a regional commercial land concept was developed and the Am Wolbersacker site was brought into the dialog with the district government with a letter of intent (LOI). An inter-municipal working group consisting of the cities' urban planning and economic development offices is working out criteria and procedures for developing and marketing the area. The current status focuses in particular on the question of the extent to which, in addition to the positive structural effects, costs and revenues (business taxes) can be clarified in a binding manner.

Beyond the two pilot projects, further discussions are pending with municipalities and cities in the Rhein-Sieg district that were recommended in the expert report for regional cooperation.

Cologne/Bonn Region e.V.

Cooperation at the level of the Cologne/Bonn region consists of collaboration between the three independent cities of Cologne, Bonn and Leverkusen and the districts of Rhein-Sieg-Kreis, Rhein-Erft- Kreis, Rhein-Kreis-Neuss, Oberbergischer Kreis and Rheinisch Bergischer Kreis. From the diverse strategic and operational work of the association, the agglomeration program is a focus of the association's activities. It builds on the umbrella strategies Agglomeration Concept and Regional Climate Change Prevention Strategy presented in 2019. Guidelines and requirements for exemplary projects will be defined together with municipal stakeholders. The program is intended to help attract funding for projects under the upcoming EU funding period 2021 - 2027. In this context, a kick-off forum on inter-municipal economic area development was held in March 2021. In it, the joint cooperation between the city of Bonn and the region was presented as good examples.

Another focus of the association is on the further development of the COMPASS funding management system. For this purpose, so-called funding nodes have been set up in the member cities and districts. In Bonn, the city funding department forms the link to COMPASS the funding node.

Rhineland Metropolitan Region (MRR)

The city of Bonn is a founding member of the Metropolregion Rheinland e.V. The metropolitan region has a population of around 8.6 million and comprises 23 administrative districts and independent cities as well as the Aachen city region in the administrative districts of Düsseldorf and Cologne in North Rhine-Westphalia. After its foundation in 2017 and the start of its work, the association's board of directors appointed Ms. Kirsten Jahn and Ms. Ulla Thönnissen as the new dual leadership in the management on January 22, 2019. The aim of the association is to intensify the cooperation of the local authorities and chambers of commerce in the Rhineland at the political, economic and administrative levels through appropriate measures, towards a metropolitan region of European significance. 

The economic promoter of the City of Bonn, Victoria Appelbe, has taken over the management of the Location Marketing WG. As part of an evaluation process, the organizational structures were adapted and adopted with an amendment to the Articles of Association at the General Meeting on 2 July 2021.

"Ingenious in the Rhineland" to Bonn-based companies

Within the framework of the innovation award of the Rhineland Metropolitan Region e.V. "Rheinland Genial", the city of Bonn together with the Bonn Rhein-Sieg Chamber of Commerce and Industry submitted proposals for a first nomination phase. Four innovative companies representing the sectors IT economy, manufacturing companies and handicraft were recognized by the jury. The award ceremonies took place with the participation of the top management of the IHK, the city of Bonn and the management of the Metropolregion Rheinland e.V.. The awards went to:

Stuck Belz,
Innovation type business model innovation

Tarent solutions GmbH
Innovation type organizational innovation / social innovation

GKN Powder Metallurgy Holding GmbH
Innovation type environmental innovation / process technology innovation

Type of innovation Process and technology innovation

Mr. Dr. Ulrich Ziegenhagen
Abteilungsleitung, Stellvertretende Amtsleitung, Manager Digitale Stadt

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