Amsterdam’s largest bike parking facilities built under water

Fine pieces of architecture have been created under the water and tour boats of Amsterdam Central Station. After four years of construction, the two largest bike parking facilities of Amsterdam Central have been finished! The new parking garages, one located at the front of the station and one at the back have been built under water. Together they offer space for approximately 11.000 bicycles. The Stationsplein parking was officially opened on Wednesday 26 January in the presence of State Secretary of Infrastructure and Water Management Vivianne Heijnen, alderperson Melanie van der Horst and National Railway president director Wouter Koolmees. In February, the IJboulevard parking at the back of the station will be opened.

The largest bike parking facility in the city

The Stationsplein parking has been built under the Open Havenfront, the water between the Prins Hendrikkade and Stationseiland. It is Amsterdam’s largest bike parking facility with space for 7.000 bicycles. The new bike parking can be reached by a slow escalator without steps. The garage is connected with the metro hall and Amsterdam Central Station. Once inside, travelers can comfortably walk without detours to their choice of public transportation.

Timelapse: this is how Amsterdam built a huge bike parking garage under water.

IJboulevard opens mid-February

On the other side of the station, the so called IJzijde, the IJboulevard parking has been built under water in the IJ river. A boulevard of 6000 m², also called IJboulevard, has been built on top of the parking facility with a beautiful view over the water. This parking will be opened in February.

221221-Stationsplein en IJboulevard-fotopool_RT-45.jpg IJboulevard

Central station as it used to be

Amsterdam has built these facilities under water because the city wants to give pedestrians more space around Amsterdam Central Station. The coming weeks the bicycle racks around the station will be removed. From now on it is only possible to park your bike in one of the four bike parking facilities. Without the bicycle racks, the public space is tidier, well-arranged and safer. Moreover it is easier to keep the street clean. The opening of the new parking facilities marks the beginning of a new era, in which Amsterdam Central Station will become a bit more like around 1900 again. More accessible and pleasant, without cars and bicycles parked everywhere.

The Fietsflat is closed

The opening of the two new bicycle parking facilities also marks the closing of the ‘Fietsflat’, an iconic building built solely for parking bikes. It’s image is an icon of Amsterdam as a bicycle city. The Fietsflat was built twenty years ago as a temporary parking garage. Soon there will be enough parking space in the new facilities, therefore the Fietsflat is no longer necessary. However, the Fietsflat will remain for the time being because forecasts show that more bicycle parking spaces may be needed at Central Station in the coming years.

Innovative, quick and easy parking

In the spring, a smart wayfinding system will be installed around Central Station to help cyclists find their way to the parking facilities. The signs not only show where the four parking facilities can be found, but also indicate how much space is still available. In the new facilities, green and red lights indicate in which row there is open parking space.

Cyclists can now park their bicycles for free every first 24 hours in any of the four parking facilities. They can check in with a public transport card or with a bicycle tag. The bicycle tag is a smart sticker that is placed on the bicycle. With the tag, cyclists can easily and quickly check in and out at the parking facilities without having to take out their public transport card. Cyclists only have to walk past the check-in pole. This comes in handy if you are in a hurry. A parking subscription can be linked to the bicycle tag.

For the beforementioned bike parking innovations Amsterdam received a contribution from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) for Transport. The CEF is the funding instrument to realize European transport infrastructure policy. It aims at supporting investments in building new transport infrastructure in Europe or rehabilitating and upgrading the existing one.

221221-Stationsplein en IJboulevard-fotopool_RT-14.jpg Stationsplein

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