Transport companies call for a Mobility Minister

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No image availableNL Times

The next Dutch government should include a Minister for Mobility, who must focus on improving the connection in and between cities to prevent a further increase in traffic jams and accidents, according to a manifest set up by a coalition consisting of seven major public transporters and car companies, NOS reports. 

According to the manifest, the new Minister should work alongside the Minister of Infrastructure and Environment and a billion euros should be made available to it to invest in infrastructure. The money should go towards improving the connections of intercity buses, the highways, waterways and tackling traffic bottlenecks. Money should also be made available for improving cycling infrastructure and transitioning to green fuels. 

The coalition that wrote the manifest currently consists of NS, the RAI association, Transport and Logistics Netherlands (TLN), ANWB, city transporters GVB, RET and HTM, the federation of mobility companies in the Netherlands FMN and Royal Dutch Transport KNC. They call on other organizations to join their cause. 

According to this coalition, the current Dutch infrastructure is inadequate and problems will just increase. Traffic jams are expected to increase on the Dutch roads by 38 percent by 2021. Over the past decade train passengers traveled 20 percent more kilometers. And allover public transport use increased by 5 percent. The growing pressure on the infrastructure will only lead to more accidents, an increase n the number of fatalities and increasing threat to the environment.

Minister Melanie Schultz van Haegen of Infrastructure and Environment is not enthusiastic about creating a separate Mobility Ministry. "The current good thing is precisely that mobility is combined with the environment and infrastructure. Whether you take a bus or car, everything has impact on the environment. So it's good that these things fall together in one ministry." she said to NOS.