Last week, on May 1st and 2nd, we welcomed a delegation of 11 people from Sustrans London to learn more about Dutch cycling policy and practices. The group visited The Hague, Delft and Rotterdam on Tuesday, May 1st and Utrecht and Houten on Wednesday, May 2nd.
On the 1st of May, members from the UK Sustrans, were welcomed at the Ministry of Infrastructure & Water by cycling expert Erik Tetteroo, who presented cycling related topics from a national perspective Tour de Force, and various programmes in the context of behaviour change (Beter Benutten). In the afternoon, our managing director Mirjam Borsboom introduced Dutch Cycling Embassy. In the afternoon, the group enjoyed a bicycle tour led by Lennart Nout and Paul Belton, both from Mobycon. The day began with a concise and informative historical presentation about Delft and Rotterdam. An extensive and casual bicycle tour followed the presentation.
The tour was allotted enough time to exemplify a thorough variety of mobility environments. Starting in Delft, the group was shown a smaller Dutch city, followed by rural roadways, into Rotterdam. Sustrans was particularly interested in Rotterdam since it is a large Dutch city which continues to be transitioning from auto-centric to bicycle-focused infrastructure. The group from London saw many ways that Rotterdam exemplifies a next possible phase for their own city.
As the tour finished in front of the beautifully redesigned Rotterdam Central Station, they were in awe as they passed around images of the chaotic auto-dominated environment that existed before. The new Rotterdam Central Station greeted the visitors with its sleek and modern design, ushering them to their train back to The Hague.
On the second day, 2 May, the group was hosted by cycling expert Willem Snel of &Morgen. Eric van Dijk of the Province of Utrecht explained how cycling planning is positioned in regional policy and the goals of these policies. Afterwards, in his presentation Willem Snel touched upon planning from a broad perspective with reference to cycling-inclusiveness and on intelligent mobility. Willem introduced various projects &Morgen is working on such as community development and mobility as a service.
In the afternoon, Bas Hendriksen from Loendersloot Groep, showed the group the best of cycling infrastructure in Utrecht and Houten. The weather was on our side and this made the study visit not only very informative but also pleasant and comfortable. The delegation from Sustrans takes many new perspective, facts and inspiration back to London. We hope to cooperate with them again in the future!