15 avril 2015
This article presents several information on the "Plans de déplacements urbains", French version of the European SUMP.

PDU legal definition

The “Plans de déplacements urbains” – PDU (Sustainable urban mobility plans) have been in existence for thirty years in France. They were created by the domestic transport orientation law (loi d’orientation des transports intérieurs - LOTI) in 1982, but have only really developed since the law on air quality (LAURE) of 1996, which made them compulsory in urban areas of over 100,000 inhabitants.

Several laws improved both the content and process of the PDUs in France, till the recent law on urban planning (ALUR) of 2014. The evolution of French legislation on PDUs and exhaustive list of objectives is available on the following downloadable document.

The “Plan de déplacements urbains” are now legally defined in the transport code (articles L. 1214-1 to L. 1214-37) by these different characteristics :

1. Objectives and legal weight

  • 4 general objectives and 7 thematic objectives
  • Compatibility with other planning documents
  • Evaluation 5 years after approval

2. Process of elaboration and revision

  • Transport authority responsible for the elaboration and other stakeholders to involve
  • Public participation and official notice of partners
  • Final approval
  • Conditions of revision

Detailed information on legal aspects and case law of PDU are available in the Guide juridique pour l’élaboration des PDU, published by Certu in 2013 (only available in French).

Factsheets on PDUs in English

General information on "Plans de déplacements urbains" can also be found in two factsheets published in 2012 and 2013 :

30 years of sustainable urban mobility plans (PDU) in France. « Focus on » n°27 (2013)

PDU : the French urban mobility plan – Integrating transport policies. “Tools & Methods” n°1 (2013)

Database on PDUs in France

Last but not least, the exhaustive list of PDUs and other mobility plans in France can be downloaded here. It contains information for the 321 urban transport authorities in France. Most of the recent PDUs can be downloaded on their own websites.

More information by contacting Thomas Durlin, project manager in charge of mobility planning at Cerema