Location Intelligence steals the show during TLN Live

Hosting the Eurovision Song Contest will temporarily transform the vibrant city of Rotterdam into the world’s premier festival venue come May 2020. As well as being a major boost for the Netherlands, this presents a complex logistics challenge that calls for smart planning. And that’s where location intelligence comes in, explains Johan Ruijten, Route Optimisation Specialist at Geodan.

Where will my city hub be located?

‘Since we link all kinds of relevant data and information together and work with smart algorithms, we can tell transport companies and logistics companies everything about the most efficient routes, as well as how to analyse and monitor these complex processes and intervene where necessary.’ At TLN’s invitation, Geodan presented itself during TLN Live, a trade fair for the transport and logistics industry. And what could be better than letting visitors personally experience the power of location intelligence?

Johan: ‘At the fair, we gave visitors a glimpse into what the massive operation that is the Eurovision Song Contest involves.’ (see video) For example, how do you prevent serious congestion problems with all those hundreds of performers heading to the Ahoy stadium? How do you manage the huge numbers of international visitors, and what is the best location for a city hub where goods can be combined? In the control room, visitors could take charge of the process themselves.

‘This is a playful nod to the complex reality of transport companies and logistics companies,’ Johan continues. ‘With zero-emission zones, the creation of city hubs and the construction of the requisite charging facilities, they are on the eve of an all-new and challenging stage in urban freight logistics.’

More complex urban freight logistics

Elisabeth Post, chair of TLN, made it clear during the conference: ‘It’s all about data. That’s where we need to achieve results.’ By investing in IT, businesses develop a better understanding of their business operations, and they are finding answers to questions like: How much did I earn yesterday, and by what means? Was I able to save on expenses through a smart combination of journeys? It is these types of insights that lead to higher returns. Her advice to the transport companies in attendance was therefore: install a dashboard, not just in the cabin, but on your desk as well!

‘This is right in line with our activities. At Geodan, we have been working for years on creating innovative intelligence solutions for a host of logistics challenges,’ Johan says. ‘This also extends to urban freight logistics, which is becoming more complex and intricate all the time. The measures that must be implemented under the Climate Agreement will have a massive impact on the transport industry. And time is running out, because 2025 – when the zero-emission zones need to be in place – is just around the corner!’


The dashboard reveals the state of the city and its main processes at a glance.

LI as the ultimate solution

In order to establish one of these zones and incorporate local variables, it is important to collect, analyse, integrate and visualise large amounts of specific data. Johan: ‘For TLN, we developed a user-friendly online map viewer which reveals the situation in the city and supports the decision-making process. Our viewer makes all the key data visible at a glance, including their interrelationships. This ranges from environmental areas and shopping areas to historical city centres and business estates for potential hubs, providing input for discussions with the City and other stakeholders. TLN has been using the map viewer to its great satisfaction for more than six months now. It is a convenient tool that quickly gives you access to the information you need and ensures that discussions are based on factual arguments.’

Keep up-to-date – read our blog series

From multimodal delivery and collaboration with friendly competitors to reducing the number of transport movements and achieving the most efficient possible load factor: these are all developments that call for a redesign of planning and scheduling systems and a changing role for planner/schedulers. These are significant changes, but they also present opportunities – if you make sure your timing is right.

In a series of blog posts, Johan Ruijten will guide you through the increasingly complex world of urban freight logistics: an industry under pressure. Read more about the issue soon: ‘New models of collaboration designed to achieve zero-emission targets.’


Geodan has two branches in the Netherlands

One location in Amsterdam and one in 's-Hertogenbosch. The general mailing and visiting address is President Kennedylaan 1, 1079 MB Amsterdam.


GPS Lat/Lon:Geodan ‘s-Hertogenbosch
51.69174 5.299683
GPS Lat/Lon:Geodan Amsterdam
52.342346 4.91305

Geodan ‘s-Hertogenbosch
Buitenhaven 27-A
5211 TP ‘s-Hertogenbosch
 +31 (0)73 – 6925 151


Geodan Amsterdam
President Kennedylaan 1
1079 MB Amsterdam
 +31 (0)20 – 5711 311