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Implementing Sustainable Urban Travel Policies. National Peer Review: The Netherlands

In June 1999, a team of urban travel experts along with representatives of the
European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) carried out an in-depth
review of urban travel policy in the Netherlands including a three-day visit to the
Netherlands.
The review was organised upon invitation of the Ministry of Transport, Public
Works and Water Management (V&W) in the context of a project carried out by the
ECMT in association with the OECD focusing on implementation of sustainable
urban travel policies. Launched in 1998, this project is comprised of three principal
parts: a series of workshops on particular topics; a survey of cities; and a series
of in-depth national reviews of urban travel policy.1
The review took place at a time when the Government of the Netherlands was
preparing its National Traffic and Transport Plan (NVVP), scheduled for completion
in 2000. Three peer experts, representing the governments of Switzerland,
Sweden and the United Kingdom carried out the review. Two members of the
ECMT secretariat also participated in the three-day visit.2
During the review visit, meetings were held with both the ministries of Transport,
Public Works and Water Management, and Housing, Spatial Planning and
Environment, as well as with municipal, regional and provincial representatives.
The team also met with members of several stakeholder organisations. The scope
of the review included traffic and transport, land-use and spatial planning and
environmental issues.
This report brings together information on the policies and policy-making
structures with the analysis of this team of experts to provide a picture of how
urban travel policymaking is carried out in the Netherlands. The report attempts
to point out where the Netherlands has demonstrated real leadership in pushing
forward policies and practices to ensure sustainability in urban travel, and where
policymaking could benefit from new organisation and approaches.