How the safe Muider cycling bridge was realised
The bridge over the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal along the A1 highway, was considered dangerous for cyclists until the year 2010. This is because cyclists had to share the narrow roadway with both vehicular traffic and regional buses.
The solution to this problem, a separate bridge for cyclists, was obvious; however, this solution turned out to be not that simple. Find out below how this Muider cycling bridge was implemented in consultation with seven different government parties.
Bridge in traffic congestion ranking
On a yearly basis, the bridge along the A1 highway which is intriguingly located in the middle of the northern wing of the Randstad urban area, used to be highly ranked in the traffic congestion ranking . As a result, this bridge was included in all programs for stimulating alternatives to the car. Yet, when it came to the bicycle travel, for a long time the bridge remained "a bridge too far" for all involved authorities. The bridge was found to be at the end of the area of influence, at the limit of visibility and too expensive for bicycle measures. The costs for the cycling bridge were initially estimated at approximately 6 million euros but amounted to more than 20 million euros.
Although the City Region of Amsterdam (now known as Transport Authority Amsterdam) started the project in 2003, seven different authorities were involved in the final solution. The municipalities of Diemen, Muiden and Amsterdam were involved as well as the provinces of North Holland and Flevoland, the City Region of Amsterdam, and the State. All forementioned authorities had their interests in the bicycle bridge as well as legitimate reasons for not building it themselves.
‘Impossible project’ successful after all
A beautiful bicycle bridge along the A1 highway is now a reality. Read in the paper (in Dutch) about the success factors for bringing this "impossible" project to fruition. Was it successful as a result of political and social support together with a remarkable planning process? Or, was it more about inspiration, creative fundraising, a bit of bluff and a great deal of luck?
The bridge was opened seven years later, in spring 2010. Please cycle across the route, as it is well worth it!
Do you know any transport connections between different regions? How do you manage them? How do you ensure parties join forces? Please let us know below.