Cooperation in the tri-national agglomeration

The tri-national agglomeration of Basel is a bilingual area that extends over three countries.

The Dreiländerbrücke bridges over the Rhine River and connects the cities of Huningue and Weil am Rhein.

The tri-national agglomeration of Basel is a bilingual area that extends over three countries. Cross-border cooperation is a matter of course for the Canton of Basel-Stadt as the centre of this agglomeration and with about two-thirds of its territory bordering on Germany and France. A unilateral approach without including the tri-national partners is unthinkable in matters such as regional planning and transport. The EuroAirport Basel Mulhouse Freiburg is symbolic of this.

But even in everyday matters, the borders of this functional area are becoming increasingly blurred for the some 850,000 residents of the agglomeration. So, many commute over the borders to go to work or to spend their free time on a tri-national basis by visiting the sights of the neighbouring country or enjoying their cultural and commercial highlights. The coronavirus crisis in particular, from spring 2020 onwards, has again highlighted the diverse cross-border networking: temporarily closed or restricted border crossings have made various otherwise everyday situations more difficult or even impossible.

Institutional cooperation

Cooperation within the agglomeration area forms an integral part of the region’s administration. Founded in 2007, the Tri-national Eurodistrict Basel (TEB) focuses on regional planning and transport issues. On top of this, cooperation in the areas of energy and environment, education, culture and encounters between citizens is also moving increasingly to the Forefront.

Some excellent examples of this include the TEB encounters fund, the Basel Museum Night and the International Building Exhibition IBA Basel supported by the TEB, which has given new impetus to the region with its different architectural visions. The agglomeration programme of Basel operates a tri-nationally supported transport planning, the implementation of which is also helped through funding from federal authorities in Bern.