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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2006

Transparency in road planning documents: a case study of two Swedish projects

Hylmö, Kajsa; Skärbäck, Erik


Public opinion, expressed through written comments, developed very differently throughout the planning phases of two road projects in southern Sweden. Each project's Prefeasibility Study, Feasibility Study, and Environmental Impact Report (EIR) were studied to analyze the changes between five evaluation phases: background and inventory of base data, replenishment with additional information, consequence analysis, conflict analysis, and priorities. For one of the road projects, rich and early descriptions of impact estimates, along with appraisals of the effects on the landscape, paved the way for more effective dialogue. Better disclosure of its reports' established facts and evaluations might explain the more solid acceptance for that road project. The other project did not clearly show the reasoning behind its priorities, which may explain the many public and agency comments on the EIR; consequently, people constructed and submitted their own viewpoints regarding impact. This article discusses how transparent documentation and presentation of priorities ultimately can contribute to the success of similar projects


public opinion; road projects; transparent documentation

Published in

Environmental Practice
2006, Volume: 8, number: 1, pages: 49-57
Publisher: Cambridge University Press