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Making connections: Holland Metropole keeps on building links

The Holland Metropole region is continuing to excel in terms of connectivity and infrastructure, according to the latest research by The Business of Cities.

Air passengers are a first visible sign of how special the region is and the three main Holland Metropole airports welcoming nearly 80 million passengers in 2018. This put the region ahead of Hong Kong and Singapore, and just behind the San Francisco region, the report said.

Passenger numbers have grown faster than in other regions with a year-on-year growth of just above 4% and, the researchers say, among regions of fewer than 10 million people, Holland Metropole may become the world’s leading aviation hub in the next decade.

The region is also an important cargo hub but, the researchers say, its super- connectedness stands out most of all in its internal connectivity.Its polycentric character means the region offers the unique ability to connect multiple large cities directly by rail. Other regions, by contrast, have inherited a pattern of growth around a single centre which has reduced access to jobs and other key urban assets,’ the report said.

The region boasts an average travel time between the five centres of just over 50 minutes (second only to Greater Boston) and an average speed of around 85km/h (third only to Munich Metro and the London region).

Holland Metropole’s special connectivity is also reflected in the fact that it is the only region among its peers to provide direct rail travel between all its major centres, making living in Rotterdam, working in Amsterdam and going out to the theatre in Utrecht a realistic option.

At the same time, Holland Metropole’s digital infrastructure platform remains very strong by global standards. Having a strong digital infrastructure boosts digital workforce skills, internet usage and access to smart services, so it is unsurprising, the report notes, that Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Eindhoven and The Hague all recently ranked in the top 20 cities in Europe for the number of people working in jobs in the ‘app economy’.

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Zuidas is alive and kicking with De Puls

Amsterdam’s Zuidas business district is to get more homes, offices and even a cinema in a new project on a brownfield side between the A10 ring road and the sports centre. De Puls, a development by Holland Metropole partner VORM, will add 56,000 square metres of space to Zuidas when completed in 2023.

‘Zuidas is becoming an increasingly lively city district,’ says Zuidas director David van Traa. ‘This innovative building is future proof and, thanks to all the facilities which will be open to the public, a big plus for the district as a whole.’

The building itself will generate its own electricity thanks to solar panels on the roof and the façade, and will be completely energy neutral. The complex is also built around the maximum use of public transport, bikes and walking. The car park will only be accessible to electric, shared vehicles.

A large proportion of the apartments in De Puls will be middle market rentals, helping to boost the amount of affordable housing in the district. ‘De Puls combines diversity, affordable housing, working and leisure,’ says VORM’s director Hans Meurs. ‘We are creating ‘common ground’, where everyone feels welcome and at home.’

Holland Metropole partner MSVA Architects is also involved in the project and building work is slated to start in 2021.

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Full house for Holland Metropole stand at Expo Real

With 33 full and associate partners, and five start-ups in tow, the Holland Metropole group is out in force at this year’s Expo Real trade fair in Munich.

The Holland Metrople partners include investors, developers, architects and planners and the stand will feature a wide range of projects across all real estate sectors.

‘We have so much on offer that it might prove a squash to show off all the scale models of the projects properly,’ says Annemieke Verwoert of the project team.

The Holland Metropole stand offers plenty of space for meetings and networking, including a bar and catering unit, plus a daily schedule of seminars and workshops.

Visit the stand in hall A2, stand 230

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