Rotterdam eNews - April 2020

Coronavirus and its short-term consequences

Our world has been completely turned upside down since we started the year. Until recently, our attention was, when not focused on the practical implementation and monitoring of the RUGGEDISED solutions, on the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest, which was to take place in our Smart City District, the Heart of South. Now, the Corona virus has made our lives significantly different. Who could have imagined that? My heart and thoughts go out to the patients, their families and friends and to all the people working so hard to curb the crisis.

In Rotterdam, the experience is like many other places and most in the RUGGEDISED-team is working at home. Keeping a safe distance, no physical meetings of any kind. Even the ceremony on Remembrance Day will take place without an audience (4 May). And then of course the Eurovision Song contest, which our City was looking forward to, is postponed. Hopefully we will have the honours next year. For the time being, our close partners Ahoy, which should have hosted the Song contest is instead providing extra beds and room needed to fight the crisis.

And please, do remember the expression: each dark cloud has a silver lining. Take good care of yourself and the people around you. Stay strong and healthy! We look forward to welcoming everyone to our Smart City District when possible.

Until then I encourage you to look through our new implementation report covering all the Smart solutions in Rotterdam.


Katelien van den Berge, RUGGEDISED project manager, City of Rotterdam

Smart Thermal Grid

There is no denying, that the crisis will have some impact in Rotterdam’s Smart District, but we do also have good things to mention. The implementation of the pavement cold-heat collector and the work on extracting thermal energy from waste streams will continue as scheduled. The planning for the pavement heat/cold collector could even be brought forward a bit with fewer events taking place in our Smart District. We have also restarted work on collecting heat from surface water in partnership with Rotterdam’s Sustainable Development Department.

Month 42 / 60


Hart van Zuid continues to become both smarter and more sustainable one solution at a time.


The current crisis related to corona

Energy management and ICT

Electric Buses

On the issue of Energy Management and ICT we were happy to see the successful publication of a scientific article based on an analysis of the potential e-bus system in the Hart van Zuid and Rotterdam. The study was conducted by our partners from Erasmus University with support from RET and will help the City of Rotterdam to move forward our ambitions on a wide rollout of electric buses.

You can find a news story on the work here or the full journal submission here.

News and Events

RUGGEDISED congress successful in Rotterdam

On 11 November 2019, the close RUGGEDISED collaborator Rotterdam Ahoy welcomed RUGGEDISED partners and local business leaders to a congress focussing on RUGGEDISED and the Smart City developments in the Netherlands and Europe.We were happy to welcome prominent people including a former Dutch Minister and the trendwatcher and philospher Ruud Veltenaar. Read the full story from the event here.

Knowledge exchange at the Smart City World Expo Congress

At the 2019 edition of the Smart City Expo World Congress we were also well represented by the RUGGEDISED Project Coordinator Albert Engels and other colleagues from Rotterdam. Albert Engels joined to discuss the strategic approach for the entire Smart City Community, while my colleague Vera Kuipers presented the work Rotterdam is doing to create our Digital Twin.