Rotterdam Closes Busy Intersections Amid Coronavirus Crisis

"Test the future of Rotterdam" is the slogan of the new experiment the municipality is starting around the city. Rotterdam has spotted a couple of busy intersections in the city center and decided to close them off for car traffic.

Photo: Lior Steinberg


The two intersections along Westersingel, one of Rotterdam's most congested roads, are considered by pedestrians and cyclists as a nightmare. The heavy traffic, combined busy tram route, make, make the crossing of the intersection very difficult. Therefore, the city has decided to try closing off the intersection for vehicular traffic, allowing cars to pass through, but not turn.

"Test the future of Rotterdam - Make it Happen". Photo: Lior Steinberg The city of Rotterdam has been experimenting for a while with creating more space for pedestrians and cyclists. The goal is to become a green and livable oasis, following the steps of other Dutch cities. Humankind has been working with Rotterdam on several of these interventions, such as Happy Streets, Creative Crosswalk, and Parklets. The closure of the intersections is part of Rotterdam's new Mobility Plan, which will limit the vehicular traffic inside neighborhoods. The city plans to adjust streets and roads, and divert vehicles to outside local and commercial streets. The idea is to provide more space for locals and visitors to walk, cycle, shop, relax, sport, and play. The temporary measurements have been installed in recent days, while traffic is rather low due to the corona crisis. The city will monitor the results of the experiment and may make the changes permanent.

Lior Steinberg

Co-founder & Urban Planner

Lior Steinberg is an urban planner. He helps cities to look beyond functionality and to plan urban spaces that make people smile. Follow him on Twitter and Linkedin.

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