They have claimed for better connectivity and connection between the Atlantic Cities
The Executive Board of the Atlantic Cities (composed of the cities of A Coruña, Brest, Donostia / San Sebastián, Gijón, Rennes and Viana do Castelo), presided by the Mayor of Donostia/San Sebastián Eneko Goia, met yesterday, February 3, with the members of the DG MOVE of the European Commission and the General Secretariat for European Affairs of the French Government, the country holding the European presidency during the first semester of 2022.
The aim of this virtual meeting was, on the one hand, to demand the full extension of the Atlantic Transport Corridor and better integration of the ports of its member cities in the core network of the Trans-European Transport Network TEN-T, as well as the need to complete the high-speed rail links between Paris and Madrid already included in previous resolutions. Thus, the members of the Atlantic Cities advocate that the missing links of the Atlantic corridor be taken into account by the European Union’s transport policy and call for priority to be given to the Atlantic corridor to promote real territorial cohesion in Europe.
Today, despite some improvements, the lack of real connectivity in the design of the TEN-T on the EU Atlantic seaboard is still visible. Therefore, the geographical coherence of the corridor is paramount so that its continuity responds to the shape of the Atlantic territory and does not leave the Atlantic cities as second-class destinations.
Moreover, the network members called for the implementation of the European Parliament resolution of 14 September 2021, in which “the European Council is requested to instruct the Commission to establish a model for an Atlantic macro-region”. The recognition of the macro-region will enable the common challenges faced by Atlantic territories to be addressed more effectively, particularly in terms of blue growth, mobility, environment/climate change, innovation/research and the social dimension, with a relevant contribution from the cultural sphere.
As members of the Atlantic Cities network, the President of Atlantic Cities and Mayor of Donostia / San Sebastián Eneko Goia, the Mayor of Gijón Ana González, the General Coordinator of the Mayor’s Office of A Coruña Santiago Roura, the newly elected Mayor of Viana do Castelo Luís Nobre, and the Vice President of Brest Métropole Dominique Cap attended the meeting.
The speakers were Isabelle Maës, policy officer of the European Union’s Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport; Arthur Le ber, adviser to the French Secretary of State for European Affairs Clément Beaune; and Servane Metzger, policy officer.