Comprehensive assessment of accessibility challenges

Expected early 2021
Policy choices regarding accessibility are linked increasingly strongly with other challenges in the living environment. At the request of the House of Representatives, the Council for the Environment and Infrastructure (Rli) will advise on this matter.

Background and request for advice

Mobility policy is becoming increasingly integrated and there is a movement ‘from modality to mobility’. Enabling the traveller to get from A to B quickly and comfortably is the central aim, while the manner in which the various modalities are organised serves to facilitate this task. For this reason, the Infrastructure Fund was recently converted into a Mobility Fund. The decision-making instruments, assessment frameworks and rules on which investments from the Mobility Fund are based, in particular the National Market and Capacity Analysis (NMCA) and the rules of the Multi-year Programme for Infrastructure, Spatial Development and Transport (MIRT), are being adjusted in this spirit.

However, accessibility is broader than mobility. Spatial planning choices also have an impact on the accessibility of areas and groups in society. Digital forms of accessibility are becoming increasingly commonplace and policy choices regarding accessibility are strongly linked with other challenges in the living environment, whether they concern urbanisation, environmental quality, the climate issue or safety. This requires a comprehensive assessment when making policy and investment choices.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee for Infrastructure and Water Management has asked the Rli to advise on how, in practice, the transition to a future-proof and comprehensive assessment of challenges to mobility and accessibility can be achieved. The House of Representatives has translated this request for advice into a number of subsidiary questions: What institutional obstacles exist within government organisations and how can these be removed? Are there different obstacles in relation to national, regional and cross-border mobility challenges? How can a comprehensive assessment be guaranteed in the various assessment instruments, such as the NMCA? How can the House of Representatives exercise leverage in this process?

In this advisory letter, the Rli will address these questions from the House, with as its main question:

How can a more comprehensive assessment of accessibility challenges and solutions be achieved; what are the main obstacles to this assessment for institutions in general and the House of Representatives in particular; and how can these obstacles be removed?


This advisory report is expected to be published in early 2021.

Composition of the advisory committee

  • Erik Verhoef (chair)
  • Emmy Meijers
  • Eva Gaaff (junior council member)

External committee members

  • Martijn van der Steen (deputy director of the Netherlands School of Public Administration and professor at Erasmus University Rotterdam)
  • Pieter Litjens (Managing Director CROW)
Information or response: 

For more information or to respond, please contact project leader Luc Boot