12½ years of Loendersloot
In September 2020, Loendersloot is celebrating its 12½ years of existence. Although this may not be a special occasion for where you are from, in Dutch culture we like celebrating being halfway to our 25th anniversary, as if we were a married couple. In this article, we look back into our first 12½ years, an era in which consultant Ruben Loendersloot’s one-man operation grew into a consultancy firm with nearly 30 employees.
Ruben explains: “What is typical of my projects in the early years is that seemingly small projects regularly turned into years of involvement.” Ruben cites the example of the car parking assignment for a primary school that grew into a stakeholder management project involving the entire neighborhood. “Or take a car parking survey fora small town centre or the access redevelopment for a local nature reserve,” he says. “I was involved in that for several years”.
Why does this happen? “When carrying out an assignment, new layers often reveal themselves,” says Ruben. “With all experience gained, we are able to point out to clients the potential complexity of a project at an early stage and to offer a plan of action in advance. This is greatly appreciated.”
From a one-man operation to an internationally known enterprise
In addition to longer projects, secondments had a major influence on the growth and stability of Loendersloot. Part-time secondments gave Ruben the opportunity to make the move to employ multiple employees. This gave experienced mobility consultants such as Hans van Vliet the opportunity to do something completely different. Hans, now employed by the Dutch municipality of Renkum, says: “Working at Loendersloot gave me energy and inspired me to tap into a new creativity within myself.”
An undeniably important milestone in the development of Loendersloot was the co-founding of the Dutch Bicycle Center in 2013. This strengthened our reputation as cycling mobility experts beyond our familiar Nijmegen home base. We got involved in setting up various Dutch cycling super highways and are still part of evolving its designs. “Also delegations from abroad also know how to find us, partly thanks to our membership of the Dutch Cycling Embassy,” says Ruben enthusiastically.
Not just cycling
Since 2016, Loendersloot has been actively recruiting consultants who have expertise in other fields. Manager Boman Hommes: “With our team of experienced seniors and recently graduated mobility consultants, we can now serve a wide range of traffic engineering and mobility issues. For us, mobility is always linked to the wider society. Our added value lies in a combination of trend watching, the provision of solutions and expertise, research and experience.” This is reflected in recent projects, such as CVSC audits, Smart Mobility solutions, electric driving planning and free float research.
“Widening our focus doesn’t mean we are abandoning our consultancy service regarding cycling infrastructure, on the contrary,” concludes Ruben. “Especially for the international market, we remain focused on translating Dutch cycling solutions to other countries, we love it!”
It is difficult to predict though where Loendersloot will be in 12½ years. We have also been affected by the Covid19 crisis. Nevertheless, we look forward to the next 12½ years of Loendersloot in good spirits and new inspiration, on the road to our 25th anniversary!