Implementing Sustainable Urban Travel Policies

National Peer Review: The Netherlands

European Conference of Ministers of Transport

Transport specialists around the world have for many years looked to the urban transport experience of the Netherlands as exemplary. The Dutch have demonstrated strong and sustained commitment to integrating transport and land-use planning and policies to maximise use of public transport and cycling. Bolstered by a long-standing and highly respected planning culture, they have undertaken this in an institutional environment that favours consultation and consensus seeking among different sectors and stakeholders.

Like many countries around the world, the Netherlands has experienced increasing pressure from transport on the environment, with rising congestion in and around the urban areas, noise disturbance and air pollution and issues related to international transit traffic. While strategic plans for transport, land use and the environment have set out a framework for dealing with these pressures, meeting the often ambitious goals and targets articulated in these plans has proven elusive in many cases.

Undertaken during the preparation of the recently approved National Traffic and Transport Plan of the Netherlands (2000), this report is an evaluation of Dutch urban travel policy that is based on the findings of an ECMT team of peer experts during their study visit to the Netherlands in June 1999.

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