North Brabant

UPCOMING EVENTS IN NORTH BRABANT

04 Jun
NESS 2024 Conference Workshop
Åbo Akademi University campus + Google Map

PAST EVENTS

ABOUT NORTH BRABANT

North Brabant, a province in the southern Netherlands, spans 5,081km² and houses around 2.5 million residents. Its rapid growth brings challenges, notably urbanization, creating a demand for 12,000 dwellings annually. To address this, the province envisions transition to sustainable traffic, aiming for a 20% increase in cycling by 2027 and 40% by 2040. This entails not only promoting biking but also providing supporting infrastructure for everyday use, recreation, commuting and multimodal traffic.

The Province of North Brabant, as a meso scale level of government, sets up long-term visions, public transport plans and funds local initiatives. The Province pursues widespread citizen engagement, particularly focusing on car users, to empower them to overcome their deterrents and help them to transition to cycling. Leveraging past participatory experiences, they aim to integrate GREENGAGE Observatories into governance processes, organizing small-scale activities to enhance citizen participation further.

However, biking policies, often shaped by white, older males, may not fully address broader societal needs or reflect the demographics of current and potential bike users. This oversight can neglect challenges like ‘Mobility Poverty’. Additionally, the declining public transport service in remote areas exacerbates reliance on cars. Thus, promoting biking and public transport while acknowledging the continued necessity of car travel is crucial for sustainable transport options in the province.

NORTH BRABANT’s OBSERVATORY

The North Brabant Observatory addresses issues of traffic safety, health, inclusivity and energy through a focus on sustainable traffic and transport. Working alongside the central and decentralised government, the Observatory will empower citizens to use a data-driven approach to assess their cycling infrastructure, identify cycling obstacles and map their travel activities.

Next to this quantitative data gathering, the experiences and decisions of the citizens will offer qualitative data on possible apprehensions to switching from car to sustainable transport. Involving citizens in the gathering and signification of this data can strengthen the policy agenda through a more grounded understanding of obstacles to sustainable travel and the decision process that precedes it.

At least two GREENGAGE Observatories are planned:

BUAS Cycle Lab OBSERVATORY

The aim is to study obstacles and motivators for bike use at the BUAS campus & co-design hands-on solutions with employees. This CO will dive into these issues through qualitative methods and the resulting insights will inform the quantitative data gathering possibilities in the second CO.

MOVEMENT DATA OBSERVATORY

The second CO will be set up in an area with a high potential for sustainable transport improvements. The selection of the area will be based on the first phase and the collection of movement data via the Verplaatsingsdata app for a representative group of users. This first movement data Observatory will be focused on GPS tracking with less qualitative exposition. During the second iteration, citizens will explore local travel patterns, as well as qualitatively exploring obstacles and motivators to cycling. Political decision making on bike facilitation will be actively addressed.

In both Observatories, people from different societal groups will contribute to data gathering via digital devices (mainly their smartphones), answering to surveys and help co-designing the hypothesis and associated experiments/campaigns to allow for data validation or rebuttal. They will also take part in the reflection of aggregated and analysed data so that decisions made can be issued collectively.  

WHO WE ARE?

The pilot owner is consisted of two teams, Breda University of Applied Science (BUAS) and the Province of North Brabant (PNB), which will collaborate with a variety of partners. Whereas some partners facilitate the formation of Observatories, others provide technical or data support or facilitate mobility inquiries. 

The Observatories will engage a variety of stakeholders, ranging from invested citizens – bikers or non-bikers – to employers with a stake in mobility. We intend to involve at least 250 people and encourage particularly expressions of interest from the following groups:  

  • People with a migratory background 
  • Children taken to school by parents (through the parents)  
  • People suffering from mobility poverty (especially rural or disadvantaged inhabitants) 

WE ARE LOOKING FOR THE EXPERIMENTS FOR:

    MULTIFUNCTIONAL RUNS

    Parents

    Schools

    Employers

    BIKE STIMULATION

    Employers / Universities

    Stimulation App

    Employees / Students

    MOBILITY POVERTY

    Local communities

    Public Transport Company

    Last Mile providers

    WHAT WILL WE DO?

    ANALYSE MULTIMODAL TRAVEL PATTERNS

    Use GPS data to understand vehicular travel patterns, such as route choices and road network quality. Visualise mobility statistics using different parameters (traffic count, flow, congestion, road usage, etc) Send questionnaires through GREENGAGE technologies. Import historical mobility data.

    INVESTIGATE DETERRENTS FOR BIKE USE

    Collect quantitative (such as number of trips by bike, trip distances by car or bike etc.) and qualitative (such as decision models) data to generate insights on shifting to sustainable transports and identify obstacles to the use of bike as primary mean of transport. Data around citizens experiences and decisions on using transports could be gathered through periodical surveys; next to these data, georeferenced data on physical obstacles around the region preventing the use of the bike could be gathered through digital apps.

    FACILITATE SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT IN AREAS OF MOBILITY POVERTY

    The first phase of the GREENGAGE Observatory will focus on gathering mobility data (GPS tracking) from multimodal users. This data will be integrated into the DigiTwin platform, where the mobility patterns (routes, intensities, modalities) can be overlayed on existing datasets. Looking at those areas which experience limited bike use and are not covered by public transport will highlight several areas of interest where a CO can dive into the deterrents into biking. Managing these deterrents can remove the disconnect of these areas from the mobility system.

    WHY?

    • Empower potential cyclists to create, suggest, or set up interventions to overcome deterrents in cycling infrastructure 
    • Include all local population groups in the collection, validation and analysis of data to assess neighbourhood’s liveability and sustainability. 
    • Learn what people think and feel about the current biking plan and policies to inform budget allocations 
    • Create a region-wide database of visual or anecdotal evidence to tackle ‘Mobility Poverty’ 
    • Update the provincial plan with localiseed GPS-based data 
    • Integrating mobility data into a digital twin to use as an evidence-based decision support tool for policy making 
    • Deliver mobility recommendations that cater to the specific needs of a locality and offer structural changes on the provincial plan at a local and municipal level 
    • Reassess existing provincial plan for an inclusive transition towards sustainable traffic and transport