Rotterdam plans two new bridges over Maas river
Rotterdam plans to build two new bridges over the Maas river, called the Meuse river in English. The first new bridge will connect Rotterdam West and Waalhaven, the second will be in the east of the city between Kralingen and the area where the new Kuip is planned, according to broadcaster NOS. The new bridges must better connect the northern and southern districts of the city, with the intention that the city center will eventually lie on both banks of the river. Rotterdam also hopes that the new crossings will decrease the social and economic disparities between the two districts separated by the river. The two new Maas crossings form part of a mobility plan the Rotterdam mayor and aldermen adopted last week. Professor of socioeconomic transitions Derk Loorbach, who helped with the mobility plan, believes the bridges will be expensive, but also provide many social returns. "The socioeconomic problems in Rotterdam-Zuid are also a mobility issue. People hardly ever leave the district. Public transportation is often too expensive and there is no culture of cycling", he said to NOS. "Lots of money was put into the social, but with little effect, partly due to a lack of accessibility. That certainly legitimizes a major investment in new bridges." The intention is that the new bridges will be funded by the municipality, Europe and the government. The municipality also wants to encourage the use of cycling and public transport in the city in future.