Are the local residents, companies and other interested parties satisfied with the information provision and with the communication around the IJmuiden new sea lock project? That is why Rijkswaterstaat and OpenIJ examine people's satisfaction every six months. The results of last May's online survey are now available.
Once again, many people took part in the satisfaction survey. Compared to the previous survey (November 2018), there was an increase in the number of respondents from 239 to 263. Jan Rienstra, Area Manager at Rijkswaterstaat, and Astrid Bolle, Area Manager at OpenIJ, are pleased. ‘It reflects the involvement of local residents and other interested parties in the project’, Bolle explained. Rienstra added that the average age of the respondents is falling. ‘This is a sign that we seem to reach a broader target group. We appreciate that, of course’.
Short communication lines
Rienstra and Bolle pointed out that few companies participated in the survey. ‘This was seen in previous surveys, too', Rienstra admitted. ‘The survey we carried out last May showed no change in this respect’. What would be the reason that so few companies participate? Bolle answered, ‘This is probably due to the fact that we have good contacts with the business community. There are frequent consultations, the lines of communication are short and our Maritime Coordinator is available 24/7. If there is a problem, companies know where to find us so there is probably not much need to participate in an online survey.’
What were the main results of the study? Rienstra said that the satisfaction scores of Rijkswaterstaat and building consortium OpenIJ were slightly lower than those of the previous survey. ‘Rijkswaterstaat scored a 6.8. This was a 7.3 in the previous satisfaction survey. OpenIJ scored a 6.0, compared to a 6.6 in the previous survey.' According to Rienstra and Bolle, one explanation for the slightly lower mark could be the fact that the public road across the locks is to remain closed for safety reasons. ‘People clearly feel the inconvenience of that measure', Rienstra explained, ‘and that is reflected in the satisfaction survey.’
Provision of information
Respondents were positive about the information provided by Rijkswaterstaat and OpenIJ. Just like in the previous survey, people indicated that they would like to see more of the exciting construction process by means of videos, time lapses and site visits. Bolle said that this wish has been taken into account. ‘This year, for example, we started producing drone videos. We show these videos at presentations and share them on Facebook and YouTube. We do this every three months. This way, interested parties can see from above how the work is progressing. We also make time lapses every three months. A time lapse gives a very good overview of the progress in the work’.
‘We have also responded to the desire to know more about the technology behind the construction process. That is why, each month, we present the readers of our newsletter with a picture update of the construction process', Rienstra said. Bolle continued: ‘And we organise a boat trip around the construction site four times a year. This way, people really get a look behind the scenes. We regret that construction site visits are not permitted for safety reasons and for fear of interference with the project. That is also the reason that we have built a viewpoint north of the North Lock from where people can see the construction process with their own eyes’, Bolle added. ‘The viewpoint is just inside the fences of the OpenIJ building site and can be found by following the "OpenIJ" signs. And there is also the Lock and Port Information Point, known by the Dutch acronym SHIP, which offers a good alternative to get all kinds of information about the construction of the largest sea lock in the world.’