Rotterdam Zuid - a testbed for innovation

The name Hart van Zuid (Southern Heart) refers to the core of the southern half of Rotterdam, located on the 'other' bank of the Meuse river. Traditionally this part of Rotterdam has been economically less vibrant. It still is dominated by low income residential areas. Some would call it a problem area. We have chosen this area as a launching pad for the Ruggedised initiatives. These initiatives are developed and tested in close cooperation with six other European cities and enable a future that is circular, climate proof and sustainable. This positive focus on the southern part of the city is already attracted the attention of businesses and investors alike.

Working on a smart city with RUGGEDISED

Under the name RUGGEDISED, six European cities are working together to prepare themselves for a sustainable future. The participating cities are Rotterdam, Umeå, Glasgow, Brno, Parma and Gdansk. Each city develops and tests new techniques at a designated location in their own city. The results and experiences are shared. This cooperation is not only between municipalities, but also works in close cooperation with companies and knowledge institutions. This Triple Helix approach has already been used for some time in Rotterdam. It is the best way to learn from each other what the most useful approach is. A total of 34 parties are working together in Europe and the project will continue until 2021.

Projects in Rotterdam

There are 13 projects in Rotterdam, all of which are located in the 'Heart of South' area. These include:

  • development of a thermal grid (distributing heat between buildings)
  • use of electric buses
  • a new 'smart' timetable for electric buses
  • use of sensors in lamp posts and waste containers for example

SMART results

Rotterdam is also working within RUGGEDISED on a first version of an open urban platform: 'a 3D Operations platform'. This platform brings together data from the various smart solutions in the RUGGEDISED project in one generic environment, based on open data standards, to be combined with the city's smart 3D model. This platform forms the basis for the development of smart applications that can make use of the data provided. The city of Rotterdam is a world player in this area! Including 12,000 m2 of solar panels.