Amsterdam Southern Business Areas

By News Editor / Updated: 29 Aug 2014

This project aims to reduce traffic congestion and promote sustainable transport in 2 Southern Business districts of Amsterdam.

Background & Objectives

This project is one of ten trial projects being conducted under the umbrella of OPTIMUM2 - ‘Optimal Planning Through Implementation of Mobility Management’ - a European project whose primary aim is to improve the accessibility of busy locations in urban areas through mobility management.The southern part of Amsterdam has two different business areas: Amsterdam-Zuidoost and Zuidas. Over 55,000 people work in the Amsterdam-Zuidoost area, of whom about 60% travel to work by car. Between 27 May and mid-September 2005 the A9 motorway that serves this area underwent major reconstruction and resulting congestion was expected to be sever. Planned roadworks of adjoining motorways in the future mean that such congestion will continue beyond the period of A9 reconstruction.45,000 people are employed in the Zuidas area and due to large scale reconstruction over a period of 20 years this is set to increase to 70,000. This development will impact on commuter traffic, business traffic and logistic transport and therefore accessibility and mobility issues need to be addressed.A target was set to reduce the number of cars in rush hour traffic by 5,000 in the Amsterdam-Zuidoost area and increase the use of public transport from 35% to 50% for all movements in the Zuidas area.


Consultation with companies based in the two business areas began in 2005 in order to get them on-board with all proposed schemes. Postal codes of 30,000 employees were collected in order to build a picture of the travel needs of those commuting to the areas.The following mobility measures were proposed:
  • Van pooling - five carpool vans operating as scheduled bus services are to be trialed. These vehicles are allowed to use the emergency lane and the bus lane on the Flevoland - Amsterdam-Zuidoost route with a transmitter that enables them to open barriers. A mobility help desk will facilitate use of the van-pooling scheme.
  • Introduction of shuttle buses and bicycles that can be used in the areas. Companies are expected to establish such schemes themselves with the aid of Municipal funding.
  • Tax-free Zuidoost Passes for 17,000 workers to use on public transport during the period of major roadworks on the A9.
  • Accessibility maps of the two areas to give planners an insight into where accessibility problems could arise due to building plans, provide information on mobility management measures and communicate future accessibility issues to companies resident in the area.
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    • Staff to receive individual travel advice for all modes of transport.
    • A standard parking value of one space per ten employees to be established and maintained.


    The collection of postal codes from 30,000 people employed by companies in the Amsterdam-Zuidoost area showed that staff live in a wide area surrounding their work and emphasised the need for additional accessibility measures in order to enable these workers to continue to commute to the area.The van pooling system was trialed in 2006 and continues to operate within and across companies with vans gaining priority on certain road routes. The help desk established to run this system has been expanded and is used to advise companies and individuals on all mobility issues.Following the introduction of tax-free Zuidoost Passes during the period of A9 reconstruction, 51% continue to be used with 5-6% of the pass users having switched to permanently using public transport. Following the success of the Zuidoost Pass the Minister of Transport said she will expressly bring the public-transport options, such as the public-transport pass and other mobility management measures, to the motorist’s attention whenever large-scale road construction work takes place.The accessibility maps for the Zuidas area are now up and running. Using postcode data from companies and traffic flow data, the maps can show traffic flow under different circumstances, e.g. when a new road is being constructed or a new development causes diversions. The idea is that the maps can be shown to companies to demonstrate the benefits of working on mobility management measures to minimise the disruption to them of the redevelopment process. It can also show the impact of, for example, implementing a car share scheme.Individual travel advice for staff is being provided and an electronic newsletter is now circulated in addition to a dedicated website (, where staff can find information about construction work and the mobility measures that have been taken together with businesses and public transport companies. 2006 saw the introduction of a travel information system, intended especially for new staff and staff moving house.

    Further information

    Website: travel advice (in dutch)
Traffic and demand management
Urban mobility planning
News Editor
Catriona O'Dolan
02 Jul 2007
29 Aug 2014