European funding for Dutch infrastructure
This year, the Netherlands will receive a EUR 62 million grant from the European Commission, intended for infrastructure projects. A sum of EUR 11.4 million is earmarked for the construction of overnight mooring places for inland vessels along the River Rijn; a sum of EUR 6.5 million is earmarked for secure truck stops. To enhance freight transport by rail, EUR 8 million in European funding is available for adaptations to the railway tracks near Amersfoort and EUR 8.7 million for the Theemsweg section in the port of Rotterdam.
The grants are provided under the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T). This programme is intended to realise a single transnational transport network of roads, railways, airports, and water infrastructure within the European Union. The Netherlands is involved in 11 projects, to which grants have been awarded to a total of EUR 82 million. EUR 62 million will go directly to road, railway, and water projects in the Netherlands. Today, the European member states approved the intended decision regarding the distribution of EC grants. Dutch authorities and companies may apply to the European Commission for grants following approval from the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management.
Overnight mooring for inland vessels
The Netherlands has secured a grant of EUR 11.4 million for the construction of 50 overnight mooring places for inland vessels. The mooring places will be constructed on the banks of the River Rijn near Spijk, on the Dutch-German border. Their maximum length will be 135 metres. Special mooring places will be constructed for large vessels pushing flat-bottom craft and for vessels carrying hazardous substances.
Minister Van Nieuwenhuizen: “Additional overnight locations along this important international route will give crews more options for a good night’s rest. This enables us to fulfil a key wish of the inland navigation sector. Good news for the bargees.”
Railway authority ProRail will receive an EUR 8 million grant to improve the railway tracks near Amersfoort. The money will be used to adapt the tracks on the east side of Amersfoort station with a view to improving the flow of passenger and freight trains.
Brussels is contributing EUR 8.7 million to the work on the Theemsweg section in the Rotterdam port area. The Port of Rotterdam Authority will be using the money for such purposes as constructing railroad bridges to improve the connection between the port and the European hinterland. The bridges will put a stop to the delays caused by the Caland Bridge near Rozenburg, which is opened several times a day to allow ships to pass through.
State Secretary Van Veldhoven: “Rail transport is clean and safe. That is why we, along with the railway sector, are committed to the expansion of railway freight transport. At several locations in the Netherlands, railway tracks will be enhanced. The Theemsweg section is a direct link with the Betuwe route, the key artery between Rotterdam and the Ruhr area. It is wonderful that the EU is helping to enhance this link.”
Truck parking facilities
EUR 6.5 million will be available for the construction of five secure truck parks. The money will be spent on creating 1600 parking places with facilities for truck drivers along the main motorways for freight transport to and from the port of Rotterdam. The truck parks will be constructed along the A15 near Ridderkerk, the A16 near Moerdijk, the A67 in Noord Limburg, the A76 in Zuid Limburg, and near the port of Vlissingen. This is the second year that Minister Van Nieuwenhuizen and the administrators of the provinces of Noord-Brabant, Zuid-Holland, Limburg, and Zeeland have managed to raise money in Brussels for secure truck parks. Last year, the grant amounted to EUR 4 million.