I often cover the problems with providing enough cycle parking at railway stations in the Netherlands. These problems are continuing, as are attempts at solving them.
In 2006, Groningen finished a very impressive new underground cyclepark at the main railway station, called the stadsbalkon. I covered it 18 months ago (including a video showing how the double layer racks work). The new park was originally to hold around 3000 bikes, but during the design stage it was expanded to around 4150. This brought the total number of bicycles which could be parked around Groningen station to around 6500, which is about one for every 30 residents of the city.
However, before the stadsbalkon was even completed, the cycling officer of the city, Cor van de Klaauw, expressed concerns that they had not actually done enough.
The cycle park has strict rules about not being allowed to leave a bike for longer than 12 days, and also removes badly parked bikes, but there are still not enough spaces.
The number of spaces in the stadsbalkon has now been expanded to 5150 places and along with other additions the total number around the station is to be around 9800, bringing the number of cycle parking spaces at the station to around one for every twenty citizens.
There are two other smaller railway stations in Groningen, each with substantial cycle parking, though not as much as this main station.
The sign at the end warns people who have parked their bikes here that they will have to move them for the period of the expansion of the cycle park. This has now been completed.
Cycle usage in Groningen continues to grow rapidly. The fietsberaad recentlty reported that regular measurements made in spring-time at forty locations in Groningen show a continuation in growth in cycle traffic. At the 40 locations of the count, 230000 cyclists were seen in a day. Six of the locations had more than 10000 cyclists per day, the busiest two both seeing more than 14000 cyclists per day. Overall, cycling has increased by 7% over 2008 and 15% over 2007. The population of Groningen is 188000.
The photos were taken on different days by Judy and myself.
Fietsberaad article in Dutch.
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