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Image Quality Program

15 June 2021
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Function of a world-class port

Rotterdam is one of the largest and best organized ports in the world. The port is distinguished by its direct access to the sea, the logistical and industrial facilities and the hinterland connections. The port area extends over a distance of approximately forty kilometers.

The dimensions and the mix of industry and nature give the port of Rotterdam a unique look and feel. Nowhere else in the Netherlands does so much activity come together. The port combines economic strength and international impetus with entrepreneurship and innovation. Safety, sustainability and innovation are paramount in the port of Rotterdam.

Entrepreneurs, employees and visitors must feel welcome in this special area. A safe, clean and sustainable port with a good range of facilities and a recognizable appearance contributes to this.

Image of a world-class port

Characteristic of the port landscape are the enormous buildings and installations; the icons of the port. Companies determine to a large extent, the face of the port and are indispensable to improve the appearance and experience. Together with them and other land owners, the Port Authority wants to give the port of Rotterdam the appearance that fits one of a world-class.

A quiet and safe street scene, beautiful panoramas and an attractive night scene play an important role. Functional architecture with light colours, space for greenery and a view of the port activities helps in this, just like port-related art forms.

The ‘Image Quality Program’ has been set up to support the business community. That program includes, among other things, "ten criteria" with regard to the buildings (new construction, reconstruction and / or renovation) and layout of the sites.

Ten criteria


Orientation The buildings are clearly recognizable from the public road. The entrance and the company logo are clearly visible.

Architecture Buildings are functional and simple in architecture. They are the icons of the port that can be seen and that match the scale and urban structure of the area.

Colour Buildings installations and other large static elements have a colour scheme of white, gray and silver. Functional colour accents are allowed on installations.

Signing Clearly illuminated logos or signing makes the port area recognizable and attractive, especially in the evenings. It is of good quality and preferably placed on top of the facade. In addition, a maximum of three flagpoles are permitted on own land (for further requirements, see the chapter Reclame in the Koepelnota Welstand Rotterdam). LED advertising is not permitted in the port.

Visibility Buildings and / or installations can be clearly seen from the public road and are clearly recognizable. Avoid sight of waste (containers) and storage.


Sight lines When placing buildings or other objects, take into account the maintenance of sight lines over water and port activities from the public road. Of course within the conditions of optimal (economic) use of the site.

Fence Fences are carefully detailed and made of high-quality material in the colour anthracite gray (RAL 7016). They indicate a clear separation between private and public fields. There is a choice of a transparent mesh or bar fence. If this cannot be applied because of business reasons, a closed fence is permitted.

Entrance Entrances to the sites are set up according to the Port of Rotterdam standards.

Well maintained and clean All elements on the sites are well maintained, clean and tidy. This contributes to the image of a safe, sustainable and clean port.

Green Well maintained and preferably low green (scrub or grass) is allowed. Greenery and trees against the fence are not allowed.

For some objects (such as monuments, windmills and transformer houses) or in some areas are additional guidelines applied. Inform about them.

Approval by the Q-team

To give the port the intended appearance, the "Q-team" (Quality-team) has existed since 2007, consisting of experts in the field of architecture, urban design and landscape. The Q-team hereby replaces the advice of the Welstand Communittee of the municipality of Rotterdam in the application for an Environmental Permit. One of the members is mandated from the Welstand Committee of the municipality of Rotterdam.

The Q-team advises and tests the plans based on the applicable criteria and helps translate the criteria into the preliminary and final design. The sooner the Q-team is involved, the easier it is to apply the given advice in the design. Because of the granting of permits, the advice of the Q-team is shared with the Welstand Communittee of the municipality of Rotterdam by means of an object report.

Process Image Quality

Advice and approval by the Q-team takes place approximately once every six to eight weeks at the Port of Rotterdam. Your application must arrive at the secretariat of the Q-team approximately three weeks before that date.

In contrast to the criteria from the Welstand Communittee of the municipality of Rotterdam, which only apply to welstand-zones, the Image Quality guidelines apply throughout the port. To ensure that your permit application can proceed smoothly, we work from the Image Quality Kernteam to assist you in the interim.


The Port of Rotterdam expresses its appreciation to all entrepreneurs in the port who follow the Image Quality guidelines in order to contribute to the image of a properly functioning, readable and innovative World Port by issuing a Port plaque. This plaque can be placed on the facade and is issued annually.

Want to know more?

For questions about the process or registration for the Q-team you can contact the secretariat of the Q-team.