Cycling for Everyone
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Paid Versus Unpaid Bike Parking

Dutch showcases

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2014 - Ongoing

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Reason for intervention

Over 45% of everyone who travels by train arrives at the station by bike. In some cities, this number even rises up to 50% or 60%. Therefore, it is important that there is a safe place to park those bikes and to keep the train stations clear and accessible. At almost every train station in the Netherlands, there is an option to park your bike in a guarded or an unguarded parking area. However, the guarded areas are partly empty, while the unguarded areas are overcrowded.


The Dutch railway operator (NS) wants to use its parking facilities as efficiently as possible, while also keeping passengers and cyclists satisfied. Thereby, the NS wants to keep train station squares attractive without chaos caused by randomly parked bikes. At the same time, the joint costs should be as low as possible.

Since the implementation of this rule, there is a higher passenger satisfaction rate.

Chosen intervention

Since 2014, the NS implemented the rule that the first 24 hours are free to park bikes in a guarded area. After the first 24 hours, a small amount of money is reduced from your personal public transportation card. Travelers, municipalities and the NS have perceived this regulation as positive.

Lessons learned

1. The available parking area is used more efficiently. There is a better flow through of bikes and a higher occupancy rate.

2. Technological systems monitor bikes that are parked for more than 24 hours and which bikes are abandoned.

3. Since the implementation of this rule, there is a higher passenger satisfaction rate. There is a higher sense of safety, less chaos and an improvement of public space. Thereby, there is a good value for money

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Fietsberaad (NL)

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