Almelo is well-connected with links by road (N35 motorway), rail, and water. Almelo is nearly seven hectares in surface size and has a population of 72,459, with over a quarter of the population aged between 45 and 64 (27%). Almelo’s industrial heritage was in textiles until the 1970’s, with the legacy of this remaining evident in the form of factories and warehouses. This heritage and asset base is reflected in the approach of the City of Almelo to economic development and regeneration. For example the approach focuses upon bringing physical assets back into use through inner city reconstruction, and taking advantage of remaining assets such as the harbour, through which 900,000 tonnes of goods are shipped and exported annually. There is also an emphasis upon sustaining the city’s tourism offer and rejuvenating its retail offer; together with developing the SME base.
Almelo offers significant employment with over 40,000 full and part time jobs. There is however significant in-commuting into Almelo with 60% of jobs filled by non-Almelo residents. This has consequences for the local population with unemployment higher than the Dutch average at 9.9%. This inequality is also reflected in indicators around poverty and education, with residents having lower qualifications than average; while 25% of the population currently live in poverty. Life expectancy is also lower in Almelo at 78.9 years when compared to the Dutch average of 81.1 years.