Policymaking on waterside industrial sites: an empirical study for Flanders
Faculty of Applied Economics
Lisbon , 2010
12th World Conference on Transport Research, Lisbon July 11-15, 2010
University of Antwerp
A pertinent question in a country confronted with high demand from various sources for scarcely available land is how to generate the highest social value from existing space. In such a setting, moreover, growing environmental awareness and economic efficiency make inland navigation an attractive option. This will inevitably translate into a greater need for waterside industrial sites (i.e. sites with cargo transfer via inland waterways). The present research paper proposes a methodology whereby government can prioritize investment decisions in additional waterside land and applies the approach to the situation in Flanders. Public policy is, after all, concerned with providing sufficient space for economic activities while ensuring optimal spatial and functional allocation and taking adequate account of future trends and developments. A number of scenarios are proposed along which the future inland navigation market may evolve given a number of policy assumptions. The Freight Model Flanders allows one to simulate future freight flows by mode (i.e. road, rail and inland waterways) and freight category. When combined with a survey-based quantitative analysis, it is possible to arrive at a prioritization between regions in respect of additional investment in the availability of waterside land. This paper discusses with the quantitative aspects of a study entitled Policy for the supply of waterside industrial sites and waterside transshipment locations, which was carried out at the request of the Flemish Government.