Rijkswaterstaat manages and develops the national network of roads and waterways in The Netherlands on behalf of the Minister and the State Secretary of Infrastructure and Environment. One of their goals is to reduce traffic congestion. Using smart planning and good communication Rijkswaterstaat attempts to reduce this inconvenience to a minimum. VanAnaarBeter.nl is the communication channel that Rijkswaterstaat uses to inform citizens about their activities.
Rijkswaterstaat’s task is to inform the widest possible audience on scheduled roadworks. However RWS was only able to passively inform users about these activities if they had access to a computer. With the huge number of smartphone users RWS saw the opportunity to address this issue and actively inform users on scheduled work.
In the application users can easily view all scheduled roadwork. It is also possible to see if there is scheduled work on route specified by the user. Routes that are frequently driven can be stored in the application with updates via push messaging provided if roadworks are scheduled for saved routes.
One of RWS’s requirements was that the entire backend should be built using open-source software. We made use of Open Street Maps on an Ubuntu server running a Postgres database.
Android and iPhone are very suitable platforms for keeping users up to date. Via the notification system, users can be kept up to date 24 hours per day with information that is relevant to them. The data from RWS is available everywhere at any time to all users.
Partly thanks to the application, Rijkswaterstaat was proclaimed Government Organisation 2.0 of 2012.