Monday 13 December 2010

Assen railway station bike shop: Longer opening hours, more guarded cycle parking spaces

A small story in the local newspaper. Longer opening hours at the bike shop at Assen's railway station. The shop was previously open from before the first train in the morning until after the last train in the evening. Now the opening times each day will be from 5 in the morning until 2 the next morning, easily covering the times for trains. At any time, the shop will be able to offer bike sales, repairs, rentals (for normal rental bikes and also OV Fiets bike share bikes.

The longer shop hours also mean better availability for the approximately one thousand secure indoor cycle parking spaces (this has quietly increased from 750 places last year), though of course the 1550 outdoor spaces can be accessed at any time.

Such long opening hours are quite exceptional in the Netherlands. It is rare here for shops to open late at night, and virtually all shops are shut on Sundays and on Monday mornings. As such, this bike shop will be one of very few shops of any kind which are open at such hours. Outside these hours, there is still the vending machine.

View of the indoor cycle parking from a platform at night-time.

Outdoor parking on the Western side of the line.

Outdoor parking on the Eestern side of the line.

Assen's population is 65000. The railway station has parking for 2550 bicycles. That's one space for every 25 of the population. You can work out a comparable ratio for your own town. There are other posts about railway station cycle parking.

Update 2013
New plans for the railway station will expand the size to 3500 bikes to keep up with increased usage. Another blog post will include details in the future.

Assen is not a university town. This is a fairly typical amount of railway station cycle parking for a normal Dutch town without hoards of students to boost cycling numbers. You find such numbers even in villages, at railways stations all across the country.


Severin said...

Seems like just matter of time until there is enough bike parking for 100% of Assen's population.

Frits B said...

Severin - And still there are always bikes left tied to lamp posts and trees in front of the station. Far easier I suppose. Or just cheaper.

Kevin Love said...

Those late hours certainly are surprising.

My Dutch friends and I sometimes comment about the cultural differences in retail service standards between The Netherlands and Canada. Normally this happens after some particularly bad experience in NL with us shaking our heads and saying "That would never happen in Canada."

Our experience is that there is a whole different attitude underlying Dutch standards of customer service.