The northern Swiss town of Baden has been awarded the annual Wakker Prize by the Swiss Heritage Society for improving the quality of life of its residents.
The town of around 20,000 inhabitants was lauded for freeing its old town of traffic and investing in improving its public spaces.
“Thanks to the willingness of the authorities and the citizens of Baden, pedestrian-friendly streets and squares free of traffic now make the town centre a pleasant place to live,” said the Swiss Heritage Society on Tuesday.
“The town’s historic parks and gardens are carefully maintained according to the principles of heritage preservation and new public spaces have been created in the development areas.”
The Swiss Heritage Societyexternal link also lauded the town’s "visionary policy", the "continuous planning" and the "willingness of the citizens to vote for budgets to make the town centre more attractive". The town's commitment to invest in zones outside the town centre that are not necessarily profitable came in for special praise.
The official presentation of the prize, worth CHF20,000 ($20,600), will take place on June 27 at a public ceremony. Every year, Swiss Heritage awards the Wakker Prize to a municipality or, exceptionally, to a cultural organisation,external linkas was the case in 2018.