Participation Zuidplas on the aviation decision Rotterdam Airport is a battle in the air

The participation of the municipality of Zuidplas in the aviation decision is no more than a blow to the air and does not appear to be taken seriously by the aviation decision’s project group. This was evident from the discussion on the preliminary participation process for the aviation decision. Instead of some clarity, it turned out that Zuidplas has even less to contribute than the committee members thought.

During this Area Plan Committee, an explanation was given in a presentation by Bas Liebeek, who is responsible for the project management for participation in the aviation decision. Liebeek, former Director of Public Affairs at TUI, mainly told the story that the problems in Zuidplas are known, but that they are not weighed heavily. Only the future construction of housing sees the project group as a problem.

The interests of Zuidplas, who are hardly involved

But it became even clearer that all air nuisances caused by decreasing and ascending flights and also deviations from the advisory routes are not at all part of the prior aviation decision. Councilors Den Hartog (NEZ) and Meppelink (CDA) asked if they had understood this correctly. This is where the problems reported to the councilors lie. Councilor Baas (SP) was also surprised. But the more technical issues (one of the committee’s goals) were always held back by Chairman Van Wijnen because he was afraid of not meeting his schedule, to the annoyance of various committee members.

The new proposal states that there will be a strict ban on night flying and that less noisy planes can be flown at the edge of the day. The committee had many questions about this, which remained unanswered.

Verdoes (ChristenUnie-SGP) and Baas asked exactly how the residents’ participation was. SP has previously asked written questions about this. Liebeek explained that the project group had decided that the participation of residents, such as in Rotterdam, Schiedam and Lansingerland, was not considered necessary for Zuidplas, Waddinxveen and Gouda, and that the councilor had sufficient democratic legitimacy to participate in a sounding board group. Zuidplas is also part of this soundtrack group for Waddinxveen and Gouda. The sound group again gives its input to the central working group, where Zuidplas (and the whole of Midtholland) has no seat.

Both the absence of Zuidplas and the inability to ask technical questions resulted in a grumbling committee. Zuidplas does send a letter to the project team, but it does not seem like more than a blow in the air. On 31 May, the subject will be discussed in the city council and based on the comments, the letter will be tightened up a bit.

Noise disturbances

The councilors are not against the airport in general, but especially the complaints that stem from the flight movements. In 2021, more than 1,400 complaints were lodged by residents of Zuidplas and especially in Nieuwerkerk aan den IJssel. Many reports are also made in Capelle and Gouda, and these municipalities also have no representation. With this, the east side of the airport, apart from Lansingerland, seems to have been lost sight of.

Part of the inconvenience is caused by increasing traffic from the 06-side of the runway and then cut off the signposted route and fly over Nieuwerkerk or Capelle. Incidentally, this must sometimes be done because Schiphol’s Aalsmeerder runway is open and Rotterdam aircraft must not disturb the oncoming traffic at Schiphol.

Contribution to other municipalities

In Rotterdam, there are more and more protests against the plans and the airport itself. The closure was even discussed at the last council meeting. This topic returns in early June. There is also some dissatisfaction in Lansingerland and Schiedam and BTV, Residents Against Aircraft Nuisance, was no longer included in the discussions because people, among other things, could not sign a duty of confidentiality. Other participants were not required to sign. As association chairman of BTV, it was not possible to sign due to the articles of association.

Liebeek stressed that the whole participation process as an annex will ultimately go to the House of Representatives and the Senate, where a decision will be made on the airport decision. This makes the whole participation process more like a paper tiger than serious participation of residents.

Read the full file about Rotterdam The Hague Airport here

Leave a Comment