Landside Accessibility of a Possible New Dutch Off-shore Airport

Landside Accessibility of a Possible New Dutch Off-shore Airport


T M H J de Laat and L de Vrees, Programme Bureau Flyland, NL



At the end of the last decennium studies made evident that Amsterdam-Schiphol airport will reach its maximum capacity in ten to thirty years from now. The Dutch government considers the North Sea as apotential location for an artificial island in order to accommodate, in the longer term (beyond 2020), a new airport. At present, however, there are too many uncertainties related to such an offshore airport. Early 2001, a programme bureau was established which will implement the politically independent research programme Flyland. This long-term research programme has three main goals. Firstly, to identify the absolute no-go?s. Secondly, to reduce the identified uncertainties. Thirdly, to make clear if an airport in the sea is a feasible possibility within the limiting conditions of quality of life, safety, environment and economy. The research should be authoritative, in order to be used as a base for future decisions. Primarily, the research programme should comply with standards of scientific integrity. In addition, it is aimed that the research is assured of public accountability. This is strived for by developing and implementing the research programme transparently, and by a clear formulation of the research results. The different stakeholder groups will be involved in the formulation of the research questions, and in the evaluation ofthe results. A number of themes has been identified (Marine Ecology and Morphology, Birds and Flight Safety, Operational Aspects, Spatial Planning, Legal Aspects, Environmental Impacts, Economic Issues) of which Access to the Island is subject for discussion here. For this theme, a strategic action plan has been developed with involvement of stakeholders and (Dutch) scientists.

We would be pleased to discuss the strategic action plan on accessibility at international conferences, such as the ETC, as part of the scientific quality insurance in order to receive feed-back from the European transport experts to improve the quality of the research. In the first part of the paper we will describe shortly the scope of the accessibility study, including the airport concept, the location, and the boundary conditions of the research. Also we will describe the results of the studies, executed in the period prior to the Flyland programme. In the third part we present our analytical framework. This framework has as starting point the differentiation between demand and supply. The demand side includes the demand per segmented passenger and visitor and cargo groups. Scenario?s for future prognoses need to be developed for each these groups. These figures will be influenced by external developments such as High Speed Train and the location of indirect related businesses. In addition, the quality standards for each of the user groups need to be defined. At the supply side, the accessibility concepts or transport mode combinations need to be defined. This includes the connection to other transport developments in the Netherlands. Lastly, the required infrastructure. This includes the infrastructure for the offshore connection, the coast and dune passage, the exiting landward side infrastructure adjustments and transfer nodes need to be defined. The possible costs of these infrastructure works need to be estimated. In addition, it will be essential to develop criteria which should be used to assess potential locations for the coast and dune passage. In the fourth and central part of the paper we will describe the research questions for each of the distinguished aspects in the framework. Further, we will present how these questions will be answered, using a public tender procedure. Lastly, ideas on how to guarantee the scientific integrity will be presented, including presentations of results at international fora in the coming years.


Association for European Transport