published on NRC Handelsblad 15 September 2014
The Netherlands has reacted very defensive to German plans for toll roads. Its government seems truly surprised that Dutch car drivers would have to pay for the use of a country’s roads. In this column, Pieter Pauw argues that the Dutch should rather use the political momentum to implement a toll road system too. The Netherlands has one of the world’s highest highway densities, yet car users in the Netherlands spend 44 hours per year in traffic jams on average. Research shows that a well-designed toll road system can reduce traffic jams and improve air quality. Introducing toll roads is already being discussed in the Netherlands for over 30 years – use this momentum to finally implement such a system.