Utrecht: Junction of the nation
Population: 345,080 (2017)
Support from: Potentially not even the city council
Where Maastricht claims to be the centre of Europe, Utrecht can rightfully call itself the centre of the nation. It’s the busiest train station, as many trains connect in Utrecht. Support in the city is not that big, sadly for the hopeful committee in charge of the bid book.
Several parties in the city council have protested against even submitting a bid book. Funds therefore hardly seem to be available, as the city council doesn’t seem to be willing to invest. Cornald Maas, Dutch commentator at Eurovision, has even said the city doesn’t deserve the job after such doubtful support for the bid.
Utrecht is however one of the more popular cities in the country. Especially students love it, as it’s home to Utrecht University, where you can study everything from Germanistics to Medicine. Part of the university is located in the city centre. Squares like Neude make Utrecht a vibrant city. The many canals, such as the Oudegracht and Drift, give the city a very Dutch feel.
Jaarbeurs would potentially become the venue for the Eurovision Song Contest if Utrecht won the host city race. Many conventions and conferences are hosted there throughout the year. Music isn’t the most common practice there, but it has certainly been done before. It’s located right next to the train station, which brings you to Schiphol in half an hour. Even if hotel rooms might be an issue, so many cities are closeby – a hotel room is easily findable within half an hour from the venue.
Pros: Central and beloved location, which is easily accessible
Cons: Hardly any local support and lack of financial resources