Chaos caused by overflowing bike racks around Dutch train stations is set to get worse in the coming years according to the Netherlands' railway infrastructure company, ProRail.
Dutch newspaper AD reports that the government’s €220m investment in 100,000 new bike racks will not be enough to stem the growing tide of cyclists - noting the country’s improving economy and its correlation with the swelling cyclist numbers.
Around half a million people in the Netherlands cycle to their local train station each day, amounting to about 40 per cent of all train passengers. ProRail predicts that the issue of overcrowded bike racks will get worse and by 2030 the nation will be 60,000 bike parking places short.
Wilma Mansveld, the Dutch secretary for infrastructure and the environment, told AD that the government’s €220m investment, which ProRail claims is not enough to prevent bike parks from overflowing, is at the limit of what the government can provide in funding to address the issue, and that further investment would have to come from local councils.
Mansveld is set to discuss the overcrowding problem with ProRail, the cyclists’ association Fietsersbond, and national train operator, NS, next year.
Bike racks are just one isue related to bicycle overcrowding in the Netherlands. A report by Dutch road safety body, VeiligheidNL, which we covered in April, said that Dutch cycle paths are at saturation point, too.
Their data showed an increase in the number of bike-on-bike cycle path collisions causing injuries that require a visit to A&E over the last three years.
Their research has lead to concerns about a growth in “anti-social” cycling and and worries that in some areas he cycle paths are approaching the limit of their capacity.