The power of partnership

Strong together

The partnership between 21 municipalities makes the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague an area that is good for working, living and recreation. An area that provides a base for (international) companies and where visitors feel welcome.

These municipalities are working together

De gemeentegrenzen van de metropoolregio Rotterdam Den Haag in beeld

Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague: A key region

The Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague includes 21 municipalities. Nearly 2.4 million people live here, there are 1.3 million jobs and 13.5% of the Dutch population work here. Together, they generate 15% of the GNP. All the towns and villages have their own identity. However, the aim of the partnership is to strengthen the region's economic position.

Comprising Greenport West-Holland, Mainport Rotterdam and The Hague as International City of Peace and Justice, the metropolitan area has a global character. There are international connections via the Mainport, HSL, Rotterdam The Hague Airport and nearby Schiphol Airport. With top European universities, universities of applied science and many secondary and vocational educational institutions here, the metropolitan region is also home to the knowledge of today and tomorrow.

Good living, working, recreation

A metropolitan region is more than just a place to live and work; the natural environment is also important. The sea and beach visually define the region, as do the peatland areas. The extensive network of cycle routes, the many recreational amenities, historic towns and varied housing options make this a lovely place to live. Improving accessibility in the metropolitan area means improving the future for the people who live and work here. With this in mind, the 21 municipalities are developing high-quality and innovative public transport.

What does the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague want to achieve? 

More and more people all over the world are migrating to cities for work. Digititalisation has gained momentum and international competition is becoming stronger. Over the coming decades, 400,000 new residents will come to live in the our region. That requires more employment, additional business space and another 240,000 new homes in the southern part of the Randstad conurbation. However, increasing urbanisation means greater mobility. Without further measures  the number of car journeys will rise, resulting in unacceptable congestion. 

Public transport therefore needs to be upgraded. Extensive investment will improve capacity, frequency, speed and quality in the metropolitan public transport system and thus reduce car use. The Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague also wants to improve the sustainability of public transport and significantly reduce CO₂ emissions.

Fietsers in groene omgeving

 More than just a place to live and work: the natural environment is also important


Take advantage of the opportunities

These are projects that no town or village can do alone. All over the world, cities and villages are working more closely together. They are forming metropolises to tackle international competition. Home-grown and international research - by university professors right up to the OECD - demonstrates the opportunities offered by a partnership between the 21 municipalities in the metropolitan region. Combining knowledge, expertise and influence strengthens the economy. It creates new jobs. The municipalities have accepted this challenge together with industry, knowledge institutions and other government authorities.

The power of partnerships 

The 21 municipalities in the Metropolitan Regio Rotterdam The Hague are working together to renew the economy and improve accessibility. The arrival of new residents requires more homes and workplaces. But further growth can only be achieved if urbanisation, public transport and cycle paths are properly coordinated. In this way, we are working on the spatial-economic reinforcement of the metropolitan region.

Jongen bedient een robotboor

The metropolitan region is an important economic centre

Renewal of the economy

With nearly 2.4 million residents and a 15% share in the Gross National Product, the metropolitan region is an important economic centre. To stimulate employment and strengthen the region's appeal, economic and technological renewal is essential. This demands intensive cooperation between government authorities, knowledge institutions, education and industry.

Stimulate innovation and economy with field labs

Digitisation and automation strengthen the competitive power of businesses and provide more employment at all levels. But that requires specific knowledge of new technologies, new customers and new markets. Field labs ensure that innovations and solutions gain momentum. For example 3D printing, big data, robots that can weld faster and more accurately and aircraft that are lighter and therefore more environmentally friendly. The Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague contributes to innovation programmes for the smart manufacturing industry, energy and climate, health care technology, and agri-food, as well as providing the possibility for start-ups to test in the field labs.

Students at work at the Food Academy in Vlaardingen

Regional campuses are important for the regional economy

Better alignment between education and the job market

Existing jobs are changing and new careers are emerging. How does a business respond? Where do you find suitably qualified people? This is quite a challenge. Retraining employees, helping jobseekers find employment and attracting international talent are all potential solutions and or equal importance. A group of 66 South Holland organisations signed up to Human Capital Agreement to embark on a joint approach. The leading universities in Delft, The Hague, Leiden and Rotterdam are a great base for knowledge development and renewal of the economy. The Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague also invests in innovation through regional campuses. In addition, the campuses ensure better alignment of secondary and higher vocational education with the labour market.

Better use of existing and new work locations

Space is at a premium in this region. Existing and new work space must therefore be used optimally and a smart combination of housing and working achieved. This is being done at Schieoevers in Delft, in the Makers District in Rotterdam and in the Central Innovation District-Binckhorst in The Hague. Good accessibility of business spase is, of course, vital for success. Regional coordination is therefore a priority in this development.

The right business in the right place: that is our aim.

stedelijk beeld van wonen, werken en recreeren

Natural areas the lungs of the city

Promote green space and recreation to attract business

New residents need new homes, particularly in towns and cities. It is also important not to lose the natural areas in the region: the lungs of the city. We therefore need to accommodate recreation and green living. With its green spaces, lovely city centres, historic villages, beaches and the dunes, the metropolitan area has a lot to offer. Recreation and the leisure economy can flourish if we improve how we promote them. We are doing that together with the province of South Holland. We are also working together on the further development of recreational areas on Voorne-Putten (near Rotterdam) around Midden-Delfland and along the coast near Wassenaar, The Hague and the Westland.

Further improve digital accessibility 

Good digital accessibility is important for economic innovation and growth. Fast Internet is required for autonomous vehicles, drones, robots, and applications in health care and industry. The metropolitan area already does well in this, and businesses and municipalities are combining their knowledge, to further improve this good position; Living Lab Scheveningen and the Do IoT (Delft on Internet of things) Fieldlab South Holland in Delft have created testing labs for 5G in the region. The presence of fast digital networks makes it more appealing for businesses to settle here.

Promote the energy transition together 

It is important to make smarter use of resources and energy and promote re-use of materials. For the transition to sustainable energy, the 21 municipalities have joined with the province of South Holland and the four water boards to draw up a Regional Energy Strategy. The Port Authority, Greenport West-Holland, energy and network operators and the housing associations are also involved, thereby sharing knowledge and experience.

Geothermal energy, industrial residual heat, more sustainable offices and business parks, and the application of energy-efficient mobility solutions - we are working together to achieve them.

Improve accessibility 

Working on the renewal of the economy and improving accessibility go hand in hand. Extensive housing projects need a good infrastructure. New homes and workplaces must optimally link up with cycle paths and high-quality public transport.

Man pakt auto na rit met metrovervoer, zogenoemde Park en Ride

It must be easy for travellers to combine cycling or taking the car with public transport

Improve accessibility of top locations and jobs

In the coming decades, the metropolitan region will need 240,000 new homes for 400,000 new residents. That requires a good planning policy. In 45 minutes, you must be able to commute from home to your work. That requires safe and sustainable travel options. For example better cycle paths and comfortable, faster and more frequent public transport. We are also improving public transport hubs, P+R facilities and bike parks.

Strengthen metropolitan public transport network 

To respond to the growing number of residents, we need attractive and fast public transport. However, there is no such thing as a free lunch - investments cost money and the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague, the government, provincial authorities and transport companies will need to find the funds.

It is necessary to:

  1. achieve more frequent transport and more stations on the Leiden-Dordrecht line;
  2. provide lightrail connections between The Hague Zuidwest-Zoetermeer and Scheveningen-Delft/Zoetermeer;
  3. achieve a new river crossing and public transport connection in Rotterdam-Zuid;
  4. increase the metro capacity in the Rotterdam region;
  5. give quality incentives to public transport hubs and regional public transport in the south of the Randstad conurbation. The new trams which are going to be introduced in The Hague are a good example.

Overall, we will significantly improve the metropolitan public transport in terms of capacity, frequency, speed and quality. This will result in nearly double the number of journeys by public transport in 2040 in the south of the Randstad conurbation.

A good road network is always essential

Despite improvements to public transport, the car will continue to be indispensable in certain parts of the metropolitan region. For that reason, a good, reliable and cohesive network of roads is important, particularly for the Mainport and the Greenport. With good connections from the main roads to minor roads, we will improve traffic flows and thus certainty about travel time. This is particularly important for residents of Voorne-Putten who work in the Rotterdam region.

Automatic shuttle

New safety systems lead to fewer road traffic casualties

Progress in innovation in mobility 

New technologies make transport systems more efficient, profitable and sustainable. With more specific travel information, it becomes easier to choose the fastest route and the most suitable means of transport. Innovation in mobility also produces safety systems which help reduce the number of road casualties.


From platooning to talking traffic

In more locations, there will be automatic shuttles and we are promoting platooning (trucks connected electrically in a convoy), which will allow better flow of freight traffic, less fuel consumption and thus a contribution to the desired CO reduction. By looking for Mobility as a Service (MaaS), road users can book and pay for their journey with various providers via a single digital platform.

Towards sustainable mobility 

In 2025, the metropolitan region aims to have reduced CO₂ emissions caused by traffic by 30%, so that this region continues to be a good place for living, working and recreation. For this reason, the municipalities in the metropolitan area are working together to increase the network of charging stations for electric cars, for example.

Green buses 

The transition to green energy also contributes to this. In 2025, when HTM and the RET switch to renewable energy generated 100% in the Netherlands, this will result in an average 60% CO₂ reduction on electricity consumption by tram and metro. Further, by 2030, all public transport buses will be emission-free. An emission-free municipal fleet and procurement of sustainable transportation for target groups are also ambitions.

Motorist turns car on electricity

Green power also reduces CO₂ emissions

Safe traffic from door to door

Every road traffic casualty is one too many. Together we are therefore aiming for zero road casualties. Based on co-funding, the government is making €500 million available nationally until 2030. We can use this to tackle dangerous locations and reduce the risks of accidents. Primary schools will appoint a dedicated road safety instructor to teach pupils practical skills that contribute to a safe school environment. In addition, secondary schools will invite guests to talk about road safety. With a Regional Implementation Agenda for Traffic Safety, the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague is making its intentions a reality, for example, with subsidies for the safer design of roads and cycle paths.

children on bicycles or cross the pedestrian crossing

The aim is to have zero traffic casualities

The organisation: connecting knowledge and capacity 

Together, 21 municipalities have entered a voluntary partnership in the form of a municipal regulation. The Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague sets itself tasks relating to accessibility and the economic business climate. 

Together, the 21 municipalities form the administration of the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague. Mayors, deputy mayors and councillors all play a role. All participating municipalities are supported by a compact network organisation, which connects knowledge and capacity of the 21 municipalities and other partners. Every new period of governance (once every four years), the board adopts a regional strategic agenda from which the regional issues are tackled.

The government has granted the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague the status of transport authority. This gives the region statutory tasks relating to traffic and transport.

The Metropolitan Region works closely together in this with the province of South Holland. It is also the direct recipient of the government funding for regional traffic and transport. The Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague thus directs regional and urban public transport in the 21 municipalities

Finances (2023)

Government contribution for traffic and transport (BDU): € 544,8  million. 

Population contribution by the 21 municipalities for economic business climate: € 6.8 million.