The Schieoevers work/residential area, in conjunction with the adjacent TU Delft Campus, is being developed into Innovation District Delft. As a result, Delft Zuidoost is developing into an attractive place to live, work, meet, learn and do business. The Province of South Holland, TU Delft, Municipality of Delft and Bedrijvenkring Schieoevers signed a cooperation agreement to this end on Thursday 20 April. The Metropoolregio Rotterdam Den Haag warmly supports the cooperation.
The Innovation District Delft will make a positive contribution to the major societal challenges, which also impact the region and city. Think of climate change, the ageing population and the energy transition. Both the energy transition and digitalisation require skilled workers and personnel who can deal with new technology. Therein lies an opportunity to retrain available workers for sectors where there are personnel shortages.
Our innovation programmes fit perfectly with the societal issues here
Marien van der Meer, member of TU Delft’s Executive Board
Innovative manufacturing industry
Delft has all the ingredients for a successful innovation district: the TU Delft Campus is home to top international knowledge institutes, over 30 thousand students of all educational levels, a large number of startups and knowledge-intensive companies. Schieoevers has traditionally been home to a significant proportion of Delft’s SMEs, is home to many innovative manufacturing industries, and an increasing number of growing companies from TU Delft Campus are moving there.
Developing these two areas together will create more cohesion, enhance the quality of the area and ensure a better connection with the city and region. An integrated approach creates space for new business activity and allows innovative manufacturing companies to remain located in the city. This will create jobs at all levels. The parties also want to ensure a better connection between the innovative manufacturing industry and education.
Innovation districts are on the rise worldwide: they are places where knowledge institutions mix with young start-ups, long-established companies, shops and residential areas. Unlike out-of-town business parks, innovation districts often arise in places close to the city centre where accessibility is good, where there are shops and offices and where living and working converge. Innovation districts thus meet the needs of an increasingly diverse workforce.
Sustainable and inclusive growth
Innovation districts focus on sustainable, future-proof and inclusive economic growth. Cooperation between different parties (open innovation) creates new products and services. This in turn leads to employment opportunities, from which the local population can benefit.
People feel at home in the Delft Innovation District. Attractive collective facilities in the area and physical and digital meeting places invite people to meet each other. Between people living and working in the area and neighbouring city districts, residents of Delft, South Holland and the Netherlands. Young people can develop their talents at courses and internships at all levels. The innovation district thus contributes to the comprehensive well-being of Delft and the region.
A selection of the plans: the parties will start working in the near future to improve the infrastructure and realise business premises. The innovation district Delft will be connected to sustainable energy, most of which will be generated at the TU Delft Campus and on the roofs of the companies in the area. In doing so, the partners aim to work in a fully circular way, without waste and reusing raw materials and products.
Scaling up innovations
“TU Delft is happy to contribute to the development of the Delft Innovation District,” responds Marien van der Meer, member of TU Delft’s Executive Board. “It not only ensures an attractive place to live and work, but also that important innovative companies that grow big on TU Delft Campus are retained for the city. We can also roll out innovations in the area that are being developed at TU Delft Campus, for example in the field of sustainable building and energy. Also, our innovation programmes around the future of work fit perfectly with the social issues here.”