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Germany and The Netherlands have a long tradition of operating trams. They share this tradition with their neighbours Switserland, Poland and Belgium. The study tours are prepared for both professionals, politicians and laymen who are interested in high quality public transport. We mainly have selected examples regarding smaller cities and their regions. However we didn't neglect important bigger ones, like Amsterdam and Strasbourg. All systems are located in the nortwestern section of continental Europe (although we are familiar with many sites and projects elswhere, like USA, Australia and Southern Europe, e.g. Spain). Due to practical reasons we've ruled out the UK in this package (but do visit our UK-page) and limited most of the sites to the corridor Amsterdam (Netherlands) - Geneva (Switserland). To cover all relevant themes and topics we did also include some remote destinations like Dresden and Zwickau in eastern Germany and Grenoble in France.
Van der Bijl and Kuehn will develop and guide the study tours, using their world-wide network of agents and local practicians. Each is tailor-made, focused on one particular city, region, or theme.

Rob A.J. van der Bijl (The Hague, 1955) studied architecture/urban planning at Delft University of Technology ('ir', bouwkundig ingenieur, with prize, 1985). He has been awarded the Degree of Doctor at Delft University of Technology (1998). He started his office in the summer of 1987 and is independent researcher, designer and consultant ever since. In 1991 he became editor of Blauwe Kamer, Holland's leading magazine on urban planning and landscape architecture.
Motto = Pragmatic and persevering. "It takes more than a good idea to make great public improvements. The fact is that such things happen when there are leaders available, ready to take advantage of the logic of events. Even then the whole result is accomplished by a series of limited objectives over a surprisingly long period of years." Robert Moses (New York) Memberships = Professional Organisation of Urban Designers and Planners (BNSP); The Netherlands Institute of Housing and Planning (NIROV); Light Rail Transit Association (LRTA); European Designing Out Crime Association (EDOCA). Profile and assignments = For over more than ten years Van der Bijl's professional practices have been focused on the intersection of urban planning and public transport infrastructure. In this respect he became a 'light rail' and 'quality bus' specialist. One of the first projects was an investigation into the possible introduction of a 'H-Bahn' in the centre of The Hague (1989). Many assignments did follow in the early nineties, like the refurbishment of light rail/metro station 'Maashaven' and its surrounding in Rotterdam (including several related jobs for 'RET', the public transport company of Rotterdam). A major assignment in the same period was the work as consultant 'management and social safety' of the 'Souterrain'-project, a major piece of tram-tunnel and parking infrastructure in the centre of The Hague (at that time in the preliminar designing stage).
In 1998 he opened the website Light Rail Atlas. And under the umbrella of "lightrail.nl" he started a co-operation with emerites Professor Maurits van Witsen (former Head Development and Planning of the National Railways NS). Early 2002 Van der Bijl and Van Witsen finished an overview-study on light rail and high quality bus in urban regions for the dutch Ministry of Transport. RVDB supported (and still is supporting) many medium-sized cities in the Netherlands, like Amersfoort, Amstelveen, Delft, Dordrecht, Hengelo, Haarlem, Leiden, Maastricht, Nijmegen, Spijkenisse, Tilburg, Wageningen and Zoetermeer, as well as the counties ('provincies') Groningen, Noord-Brabant, Noord-Holland and Zuid-Holland. In Europe and North-America many cities were (and will be) visited by RVDB-led study tours (urban planning, public transport).
Recently Van der Bijl finished a case study on regional planning and light rail in Portland (Oregon, USA), in co-operation with OTAK, a local planning, design, and engineering firm.
Clients = Architectural offices; construction companies; local and regional councils; ministries; public transport companies; publishers; real estate developers; local and regional authorities; reseach institutes; schools of architecture; technical universities. Websites = LIGHTRAIL.NL (www.lightrail.nl) offers expertise from The Netherlands for a world-wide group of users. Lightrail.nl combines knowledge from different professional domains, such as transportation, urban planning, management and mathematics.
LIGHT RAIL ATLAS (www.xs4all.nl/~rajvdb/lra) provides maps of light rail corridors in Europe, United States and other areas in the world, using light rail precedents (like Karlsruhe and Saarbrücken in Germany, as well as Portland (OR) in the States) as important examples. The site has become to act as a forum for town planners, landscape architects, traffic planners, authorities and other parties involved in light rail systems. THE OFFICE (www.lightrail.nl/rvdb) is presented on the internet in various ways. Read all about RVDB, examine some projects and enjoy the links.

(C) LIGHTRAIL.NL (Dr Rob A.J. van der Bijl / Dipl.-Ing. Axel Kuehn), Amsterdam/Karlsruhe, 2003