Station as hub
Many stations are now the vibrant heart of the city and have conquered the hearts and minds of residents and travellers alike. They function as hotspots that accessibly connect a variety of forms of transport with each other, and as places to live, work, buy things or just have a bite to eat. Always clean, in good condition and safe, thanks in part to the efforts of more than 4,500 NS employees who work at and around the station every day.
Up until 2025, we will be upgrading 200 large and small stations in the Netherlands. In this, we will be looking at the four Ws: comfortable waiting, WC facilities that are clean, warm beverages and free water taps. With these, we'll not only make the station a pleasant place to be, we'll also be working on stations as public transport hubs for all travellers and contributing to the livability and spatial development of cities. It is these three functions that we are specifically developing in mutual coherence and from the perspective of travellers and residents.
New or renovated stations are inextricably linked to more or new connections, and vice versa. The station is inextricably linked to its surroundings and as a driver of mobility, is also a magnet for employment and housing. If we take a careful, sustainable approach to developing this, we can be sure of creating a liveable environment. Effective cooperation between ProRail and local and regional authorities is essential to this.
Our three pillars for the stations of the future
Get more out of your train journey
The station is an essential part of further developing train connections, including regionally. This concerns not only Breda or Zwolle, but also smaller stations with a service level that suits their size. In the years to come, we aim to make our stations more welcoming than ever. Daily cleaning, good parking facilities for cars and bicycles, the Station Sitting Room as a pleasant area to wait or stay in, a toilet - in short, top level services and facilities. Water taps at more than 200 stations are the icing on the cake. Clean, in good condition and safe are our basic principles, and we work in consultation with local authorities, for example to offer prospects to local entrepreneurs or people who have difficulty accessing the labour market. We will maintain our current retail policy, that NS offers a range of products relevant to travellers and leaves the rest to the broader market.
Even easier transfers: the station as hub
Whether you're transferring from the train to your bicycle, or from train to train, an easy, logical and safe transfer makes public transport an even more attractive option. Examples include clear routing and signage from the city. By achieving this effectively, NS will accommodate the growth in mobility. We are innovating in the operation of bicycle parking facilities, and use our expertise to make transferring between trains as quick and easy as possible. Specifically, this means things like more self-service bicycle parking facilities, fast lanes towards your transfer, and more places to park your bicycle free of charge for the first 24 hours, to suit the station and location. Other options include more space for tram or metro in large cities, working together with Transport4Randstad, and more P+R facilities on the city's outskirts and throughout the region.
Contributing to urban development and liveability
By developing our own real estate, we improve the liveability and use of the public space around the station. For example, we can create a new function for unoccupied spaces in station buildings, building above the railroad tracks, or by purchasing real estate to develop offices.