Bookmark and Share

Easy access, both today and in the future

Tomato fertiliser, toys, washing machines... These and other goods will be arriving at Maasvlakte 2 in large quantities and need to be transported to the European hinterland as quickly as possible. The port's accessibility is a key factor in its success.

Around 2030, Maasvlakte 2 will be fully developed and operational. At that point, Maasvlakte 2's maximum container capacity will total some 17 million TEU per year. With this capacity, the new port area will more than double Rotterdam's current container capacity. It is evident that the port's facilities for conveying all these containers to other destinations need to grow along with this capacity. Measures to this end are already being taken. One of the specific strengths of the container as a unit for moving and storing goods is the ease with which it can be transported by the different modes: rail, truck, inland vessel and coastal vessel. All transport options are well-represented at Maasvlakte 2, so that containers can be moved to the key industrial and economic centres of Western Europe within a matter of 24 hours. Goods that enter the port in the morning can arrive at their German, Belgian, French or UK destination that very same day.

Less road haulage

To ensure Maasvlakte 2's good accessibility in the future, the Port Authority is already investing in increasing the spread of the hinterland transport. This means that the capacity of the most efficient and environmentally friendly modes of transport needs to be increased. More inland shipping and rail transport, in other words, and as little road haulage as possible. This objective will be achieved in a variety of ways. For example, the contracts established with the transfer companies on Maasvlakte 2 outline how many containers are allowed to be transported via rail, inland shipping or road.


From 2005

To 2033










To enable this, Maasvlakte 2 offers all the required room and facilities for trains and inland vessels to load and unload containers.

Different options

Maasvlakte 2 can be accessed via:
The North Sea
The North Sea is one of the world's busiest shipping areas. From the approach channel in the North Sea, Maasvlakte 2 can be reached within one to two hours. Furthermore, Rotterdam is connected with over 200 European ports by means of coastal shipping services.
The road
Maasvlakte 2 is located directly on the A15 motorway and has good connections with all the main roads of the European mainland. Road haulage allows for door-to-door transport throughout Europe. However, road transport is under considerable pressure.
The rail
Maasvlakte 2 is the starting point of the Betuweroute, the special freight railway connection with Germany. Other parts of Europe are also easily accessed by rail. A freight train has a maximum length of 750 m and can transport approximately 90 20-foot containers.
The river
Maasvlakte 2 lies on the estuary of the Rhine and the Maas. These rivers provide inland vessels with access to a network of larger and smaller rivers and canals in North-western Europe, with a combined length of some 25,000 km. Inland container vessels range in capacity from 32 to 500 TEU.

Modal split

The way in which the transport to the hinterland is divided up between the different modes of transport is called the modal split. At present, the lion's share of the containers that leave Rotterdam are transported to their destination by trucks. This puts considerable pressure on the motorways around Rotterdam and beyond and is furthermore harmful to the environment. That is why the Port Authority is actively implementing a policy geared towards having more containers transported via rail and inland shipping.

In terms of an environmentally friendly modal split, Rotterdam and Antwerp are outperforming all other container ports in Europe. These ports achieve the lowest percentages in the road transport of containers to the hinterland.Achterlandvervoer

Modal shift

The Port Authority has made concrete agreements with the operators of the container terminals on Maasvlakte 2 regarding freight transport to the hinterland. At present, 58% of the cargo leaves the port area on a truck. In 2033, this figure has to be reduced to 35%. Companies will therefore be required to transport more cargo using cleaner options such as rail and inland shipping. This redirecting of transport from trucks to trains and inland vessels is called the modal shift. The modal shift will lead to less congestion on the motorways and lower emissions of harmful substances.