|2006 situation at Marsdijk bus stop in Assen. Note old inferior|
road crossing at the western side with traffic lights for bikes
which no longer exist. Courtesy Bing Maps.
There was also work going on to provide more space for business in the same part of the city, so new office buildings were constructed
The bus services from this stop have been successful and therefore because people cycle to this bus-stop, more cycle-parking was required.
The cycle-parking has been expanded since it was originally built by taking away car parking spaces. The full extent of cycle-parking now is as shown in the image where cycle-parking is highlighted in red. Some of this was built over spaces which had been constructed as car parking only a few years previously.
This bus stop is on the Study Tour route so we have shown it with varying amounts of cycle-parking to quite a few visitors to Assen. Because we always operate the tour on week days, the cycle-parking is usually full with bicycles which belong to commuters (you can catch a bus from here to Groningen or other towns and cities). However, if you visit the same location on the weekend, the cycle-parking is almost empty.
There is a persistent myth about how massed bikes at Dutch railway and bus stations are "abandoned" however this is not true. The rates of usage are enormous compared with other countries and actually the people who manage cycle-parks like this are very efficient at removing abandoned bikes so that legitimate users can find a space.
The video shows the same cycle-park both on a week day (Wednesday of the last Study Tour so some participants are in the video) and on a Sunday so that you can see the vastly different rate of use:
Explore the area on Google Maps:
Bigger map. Google Maps data currently dates from 2009 so does not show the most recent changes in the area. There's a bus lane here, but it is not combined with the cycle-path. I've never seen a combined bus and bike lane in the Netherlands.
There are hundreds of spaces here, and their presence demonstrates which you can't take bicycles on buses in The Netherlands. It's nice to be able to do so, but it only works if very few people use a bicycle to get to the bus stop. In The Netherlands you can't rely on that.
The long red building is both a football club and Chinese restaurant.
Today the September open Study Tour is viewing this bus stop amongst many other locations in Assen.