|URBAN AUDIT RESULTS - ROTTERDAM
Rotterdam is a major industrial centre in the Netherlands with a
population of 590,000. The Rotterdam region, known as the Rijnmond, which is the Wider
Territorial Unit for the Urban Audit, is located at the centre of the southern part of a
major urban agglomeration called Randstad. Nearly half of the region's 1.2 million
inhabitants live in Rotterdam itself. Its favourable position relative to the Rhein river
on the North Sea has made it the largest seaport in the world.
In 1998, Rotterdam and its region provided employment for
442,000 people, around 284,000 of whom were based in the city itself. The port, chemical
industry, transport and distribution sectors are major employers in Rotterdam, which is
home to 23,000 companies, including many foreign companies. Major Dutch companies such as
Royal Dutch Shell, Unilever, Nedlloyd and insurance companies such as Nationale
Nederlanden and Stad Rotterdam, are based in the city.
Culture has become a growth sector in Rotterdam and the
selection of the city, together with Oporto, as a European cultural capital in 2002,
confirms this development. Major cultural institutions include the Museum Boymans-van
Beuningen, the Kunsthal, the Dutch Architectural Institute (NAI), the Dutch Photo
Institute (NFI), the Concert Hall De Doelen and the Maritime Museum. Major international
cultural events include the Rotterdam International Film Festival and the traditional
World Port Festival.
Rotterdam is not only the largest port in the world, it is
also the main gateway to the European Union and a strategic entry point into Eastern
Europe. Antwerp and the Ruhr-area constitute major markets. Approximately 60% of the added
value of the port of Rotterdam is generated outside the Rotterdam region.
The population of Rotterdam has only increased slightly
over the last few years. This is mainly due to the continuing departure of families with
children. An increasing proportion of the city's population now consists of non-nationals,
particularly in some districts. This has created ethnic and cultural diversity. One-person
households are strongly represented throughout the city, whilst single-parent households
have also increased.
Local authorities in the Netherlands have extensive
responsibilities. The main responsibilities concern water, rail, road and public transport
infrastructure, as well as social and community services. The City of Rotterdam is divided
into 13 sub-city districts each with their own administration. The 'deelgemeenten' have
responsibilities mainly in the fields of administrative duties, local spatial planning and
maintenance of public areas. In addition to transfers from national government, the main
sources of income for the municipality are derived from property and waste collection
The city is governed by the City Council, which is lead by
the Mayor and Aldermen. The Mayor is not democratically chosen, but is appointed by the
Queen. The Aldermen are chosen among the 45 councillors. In 1998 around half of the
citizens voted in the local elections.
Results at the WTU and City Levels
Summary and City Relative Position
Links to City Websites