Bicycles

World's biggest underground bike parking center opens in Utrecht

World's biggest underground bi...
When it reaches full capacity at the end of 2018, the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will be able to accommodate 12,500 bicycles
When it reaches full capacity at the end of 2018, the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will be able to accommodate 12,500 bicycles
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Workmen start moving 700 public hire bicycles into the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility in Utrecht
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Workmen start moving 700 public hire bicycles into the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility in Utrecht
The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility currently has space for 6,000 bicycles, but this will increase to 12,500 by the end of 2018
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The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility currently has space for 6,000 bicycles, but this will increase to 12,500 by the end of 2018
The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will accommodate 12,500 bicycles over three floors by the end of 2018
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The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will accommodate 12,500 bicycles over three floors by the end of 2018
Utrecht cyclists will have access to the facility 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and users with a public transport chip card can park up for the first 24 hours free of charge
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Utrecht cyclists will have access to the facility 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and users with a public transport chip card can park up for the first 24 hours free of charge
The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility is part of a major redevelopment of Utrecht's railway station
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The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility is part of a major redevelopment of Utrecht's railway station
700 OV bicycles are available for hire at the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility
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700 OV bicycles are available for hire at the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility
Non-standard bikes are catered for, such as those with wide handlebars and cargo bikes, in a special zone
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Non-standard bikes are catered for, such as those with wide handlebars and cargo bikes, in a special zone
Workmen start moving 700 public hire bicycles into the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility in Utrecht
8/11
Workmen start moving 700 public hire bicycles into the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility in Utrecht
The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will accommodate 12,500 bicycles over three floors by the end of 2018
9/11
The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will accommodate 12,500 bicycles over three floors by the end of 2018
Cyclists will have access to the facility 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and users with a public transport chip card can park up for the first 24 hours free of charge
10/11
Cyclists will have access to the facility 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and users with a public transport chip card can park up for the first 24 hours free of charge
When it reaches full capacity at the end of 2018, the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will be able to accommodate 12,500 bicycles
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When it reaches full capacity at the end of 2018, the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility will be able to accommodate 12,500 bicycles

Anyone visiting the Netherlands will immediately notice how crazy the locals are for two-wheeled transport. Bikes are everywhere, making finding somewhere to park up a bit of a problem. Cyclists in Utrecht started using a three-storey parking garage under the train station last week, ahead of the official opening on August 21. It already boasts thousands of spaces, but when complete, it will be the world's largest parking facility for bikes.

The Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility is part of a major redevelopment of Utrecht's railway station, which includes installing solar panels on the roof, revitalizing the canal and connecting the transport hub with the historic city center. It was constructed by contractor BAM from a blueprint by Ector Hoogstad Architecten, and will be managed and maintained by ProRail and the City of Utrecht, and operated by Dutch Rail (NS).

At the moment, the facility has space for 6,000 bikes over three floors. Another 1,500 spaces will be added over the coming months, but when it's running at full capacity by the end of next year it will be able to stow away 12,500 bicycles – which will make it the biggest parking center for bikes in the world.

Cyclists will have access to the facility 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and users with a public transport chip card can park up for the first 24 hours free of charge. A digital system has been installed to guide users to free parking spots. Non-standard bikes are catered for, too, such as those with wide handlebars and cargo bikes, in a special zone. And riders without their own wheels can make use of the 700 OV bikes available for hire.

Parking wardens patrol the facility to ensure correct usage, and there are service points for repairs and maintenance. All levels are reported to provide easy access to the train station platforms above, as well as the main hall and buses.

In all, some 22,000 parking places for bikes are planned for the Utrecht transport hub, so cyclists unable to find a free spot at the Stationsplein Bicycle Parking facility won't have too far to pedal to find another spot.

Sources: CU2030, City of Utrecht

4 comments
mike_edward
I have a good friend who travels from the USA to the Netherlands with his wife every other year, and they stay for about a month. He is always talking about how they nab a public bike and tool around everywhere! I do want to comment on the intro photo (on main page). Is that guy on a second level riding his bike beside...a glass wall? That looks like a major accident, waiting to happen!
Bernd1991
Awesome. I live nearby Utrecht, glad to see it finally coming to life. I do question if they have taken the whole 'driverless future' into account. The whole trainstation is now being remodelled, but it might not be necessary when driverless cars are here..
arnaud
For Mike_edward : People biking in general are more aware of their surroundings than people riding a car and the markings on the road clearly show the direction to follow. For Bern1991 : the "driverless future" is indeed something to plan and may question the future need for bikes. However a driverless car still use the same space a regular car which is an issue for dense city center. As you know higway in the NL won't be able to sustain more traffic even if they are driverless
c2cam
@mike_edward - I'm guessing that is thick, shatter-proof glass. Probably more personal damage from bouncing off it than the possibility of going through it. If that's what you were implying.