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From 4 to 5 July an estimated 800,000 cycling enthusiasts will be in Utrecht for the start of the Tour de France 2015. Ten percent of them are expected to arrive by bike. Utrecht is a bike-friendly city, but also known for its bike traffic jams and shortage of bike parking facilities. How is it going to accommodate these extra 80,000 cyclists?
Utrecht is gearing up for the Grand Départ. Photo © Holland-Cycling.comUtrecht is gearing up for the Grand Départ. Photo ©

Utrecht wants to encourage cycle enthusiasts who are coming to see the start of the Tour de France to travel to Utrecht by bike. Therefore it has enlisted the help of the Dutch Cyclists' Union. "On the days of the race we're expecting around 800,000 visitors. Many people from the region will presumably be coming by bike. We estimate that ten percent of all the visitors will come by bike, which means we have to provide parking spaces for 80,000 bikes."

To accommodate all these extra bikes, temporary bike parking facilities are being created in convenient places along the route. There will even be two guarded facilities especially for racing bikes, so the really sportive cyclists who come on their expensive top-of-the-line bikes have a safe place to leave them. In the Jaarbeurs toilets and showers are provided. You’ll find a list of all the temporary bike parking facilities on the website of the Dutch Cyclists' Union [link no longer works].

Online cycle route planner

The Dutch Cyclists' Union will also come with a special Tour edition of their online cycle route planner. "People will have to take into account that many roads will be closed. Cyclists who want to avoid the Tour can use the cycle route planner to reach their destination without being hindered by the race. Of course, it's also useful for visitors of the Tour." 

Cycling in and around Utrecht

The online cycle route planner will also find you the most convenient route to the many cycling events in an around Utrecht. Some are aimed at really experienced cyclists who can rival with the professionals, others are aimed at everyday cyclists and families. There are a multitude of activities in the days leading up to the Grand Départ. For more, go to our earlier blog story Tour de France activities in Utrecht.

The Tour is a great opportunity to come to Utrecht to enjoy the many cycling possibilities that Utrecht and the region have to offer - the region is well worth visiting at any time. You'll find all the information you need on our Utrecht pages.

Source: Dutch Cyclists' Union