IPI European Planning Training Course 2018

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El Prat, Spain

El Prat de Llobregat (www.elprat.cat), commonly known as El Prat, is a municipality in the comarca of Baix Llobregat in Catalonia, Spain.

It is situated in the delta of the Llobregat river on the right bank, bordering the coast of the Mediterranean Sea between Barcelona and Viladecans.

More than a quarter of the area of the municipality is occupied by Barcelona–El Prat Airport. Apart from the transport links to the airport, the town of El Prat is served by a railway station on the coast line from Barcelona to Valencia. The municipality also has a beach and a small nature reserve at the Llac (Lake) de la Ricarda i del Remolar. The municipality covers an area of approximately 32 km2 and a has population of approximately 64,000 people.

Fingal County Council (www.fingalcoco.ie) was established in 1994 and is the Local Authority for the administrative county of Fingal, to the north of Dublin City.

The county covers an area of approximately 448 km2 and has a population of approximately 296,000 making it the third most populous local authority area in the country. The population increased by 77% between 1996 and 2011. The county also has the youngest population in the country. Fingal’s significant economic advantages including Dublin Airport, fast access to Dublin Port, rail, road, power and telecommunications infrastructure. Proximity to Dublin city centre and its location on the Dublin-Belfast economic corridor, ensure continued future growth. Dublin Airport is nationally significant due to its employment base, passenger throughput and airfreight services and it remains the primary economic hub in Fingal. With the growth of Dublin Airport as an international hub its influence in Fingal continues to grow. Fingal is defined by the diversity of its landscape. It is rural, urban and suburban. Fingal has 88 km of coastline stretching from Sutton to Balbriggan. It has three protected estuaries, salt marsh habitats and thirteen major beaches.

Fingal has been twinned with El Pratt since 2006. Arising from that twinning there have been many exchanges between the two municipalities over the years with students in particular benefiting from the cultural exchanges. Whilst different in size and area, the two municipalities have many things in common with the dominance of the respective airports, a fast growing population and the close proximity to the largest cities in the region being their common interests.

Course Details 

  • Location - The course will take place in and around El Prat.
  • Dates - Wednesday Evening 7th March 2018 to Saturday Morning 10th March 2018.
  • Accommodation – Fingal County Council and El Prat have agreed to sponsor the accommodation of course delegates in the local area. Accommodation has been arranged in Alberg Centre Esplai (http://www.albergueesplaibarcelona.com/en/). Accommodation will be provided in a single room on a B & B basis. If delegates wish to share a room this can be facilitated.
  • Cost - €200 excluding flights. Cost includes 3 nights’ accommodation (B & B), lunch and dinner on both days, local transport and gifts for hosts.
  • Flight Arrangements - Delegates are expected to arrange their own flights in order to reduce the administration requirements of the IPI and so that delegates can arrange arrival and departure to suit their requirements and travel origin which may be other than Dublin.

Airlines currently flying to Barcelona are Ryanair, Aer Lingus and Veuling. 

Recommended Flights – In order to avail of the full course programme the IPI is recommending the following flights.


  • Out: FR6395 Dublin – Barcelona 7th March 2018 Time: 17.10
  • Back: FR6874 Barcelona – Dublin Saturday 10th March 10.20.

These flights are currently showing (viewed 4th December 2017) for approximately €65 return. Members may decide to stay on and get a later flight or additional accommodation if they wish to do some sightseeing.


Places are limited to 18 IPI members (who have paid all outstanding membership subscriptions at the time of booking). Delegates from the IPI Young Planning Network are encouraged and welcome to attend

IPI Free Student Places

The IPI is pleased to be in a position to offer 2 free places to IPI student members as part of our ongoing support for student members, as this conference offers an important learning and networking experience for students. The IPI will organise a competition for these places, details of which will be announced at a later date.

  • Bookings – Bookings should be made through the IPI website shop www.ipi.ie. The conference appears as a product in the shop and will be available to purchase from Friday 8th December 2017. The booking should be paid in full through the website at the time of booking. Bookings are on a first come first served basis and places will not be held.
  • It is recommended that delegates should take out their own personal travel insurance.
  • In the event of trip cancellation for any unforeseen reason, outside the control of the IPI, the IPI will endeavour to give a refund of the course fee but IPI will not be responsible for any other costs incurred by delegates.
  • It is recommended that delegates should only book flights following confirmation of their place on the course by the IPI.
  • CPD Points – The course is eligible for 15 CPD points.

Course Content and Speakers

  • The course content and speakers are currently being finalised with the host city but the general themes will be based around the provision of Strategic and Social Infrastructure. The conference will include a mixture of talks and site visits around El Prat.
  • The location of El Prat close to the airport, and to the city of Barcelona brings many challenges in terms of facilitating the provision of the required strategic infrastructure and associated services required for the development of the airport which is located in a sensitive ecological environment, and dealing with the economic importance of the airport to the region.
  • The proximity of Barcelona and its regional importance, economically, politically and culturally to the region significantly influences the development of El Prat. In particular the development of social infrastructure (sporting, housing, cultural, etc.) has presented many challenges to a municipality which is intrinsically linked to the airport and to Barcelona City.
  • The conference host, who is also a speaker, is Sergio Alegre Calero, 7th Deputy Mayor, Promotion of the City, Mobility and Transport.

Booking is available below but places are limited so early booking is essential.

Employers may wish to provide study or conference leave for attendance at the event.