This afternoon (Tuesday, December 5th) it was officially announced that, in eighteen months’ time, the Netherlands will be hosting a major European congress (with around 2,500 participants) in the field of Smart Mobility. This event, the ITS European Congress, will be held from June 3-6, 2019 in the Brainport region of Eindhoven-Helmond. The congress provides a platform for innovations and projects linked to smart mobility, such as self-driving cars, congestion prevention and logistics. A number of these innovations were demonstrated this afternoon at the Automotive Campus in Helmond.

The ITS Congress will be an ideal opportunity for industry and the government to show what the Netherlands can do and to highlight the significance of developments in this field for users. It will enable the Netherlands to consolidate its position as a leader in this field. The Ministry of Infrastructure, Public Works and Water Management plans to organize a high-level European meeting during the congress, in early June 2019.

Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, Minister of Infrastructure, Public Works and Water Management: “I would like to congratulate the region and the organizations involved. Having the opportunity to host the ITS Congress 2019 is a real honor for the Netherlands. It is an exciting prospect for local authorities and the sector to set their sights on and will provide a platform to really show what we can do.”

Selection procedure
The Supervisory Board of ERTICO-ITS Europe announced its preferred location last month. This award decision was preceded by a selection process during which bids from various European cities were assessed. With the signing of the agreement on December 5, the Netherlands has now been definitively selected as the host country.

Opportunities for the Dutch Smart Mobility industry
Hosting the ITS European Congress 2019 in the Netherlands will create a wealth of opportunities for the Dutch automotive industry, Dutch knowledge institutions and the Dutch Government, and will enable us to consolidate our position as one of the international leaders in this field.

Nico Anten, Managing Director of Connekt, on behalf of all the partners: “The Netherlands aims to be and remain a global leader in the field of Smart Mobility. By developing close partnerships – something we excel at in the Netherlands – we can improve traffic flows, reduce harmful emissions, increase road safety and promote a healthy, vibrant economy. How we will do this, and how other countries can benefit from the services we offer, is what we will be demonstrating at the ITS Congress 2019.”

Matthijs van Miltenburg, Member of the European Parliament (D66/ALDE) was also present: “As an ambassador, I warmly support this ITS European Congress 2019 coming to my home region, Brabant. To connect mobility innovations in the European Member States, we can’t do without Europe. Together we will make the congress a big success and Europe a frontrunner in ITS in the world!”

Signing of the agreement
Together with Jacob Bangsgaard (CEO of ERTICO-ITS Europe), the Mayor of Helmond, Elly Blanksma-van den Heuvel, signed the agreement on behalf of the 60-plus Dutch partners involved. Helmond and Eindhoven will host the event. They will be supported by the Province of North Brabant, the Ministry of Infrastructure, Public Works and Water Management, Brainport Eindhoven and Connekt/ITS Netherlands. The congress will be sponsored by Dynniq (lead sponsor), Goudappel Coffeng, VDL Groep, Hermes and HERE.

Sneak Peek at ITS Congress 2019 demonstrations
The live indoor and outdoor demonstrations that were given by organizations such as Dynniq, the Brandweer Brabant-Zuidoost (South-East Brabant Fire Service), TNO and Vialis provided a foretaste of what visitors to the congress will experience on a larger scale in 2019. According to the ‘A-Team’ from Eindhoven University of Technology, autonomous and cooperative vehicles are a solution that can deliver smarter and safer transport: the team demonstrated the wireless communication between a smart traffic signal and an autonomous vehicle. On a fire engine belonging to the Brandweer Brabant-Zuidoost (South-East Brabant Fire Service) participants could see for themselves just how smoothly the vehicle and traffic signals communicate with each other, allowing the fire engine to keep moving, safely and at speed, towards its destination, while other traffic is temporarily and efficiently stopped.