Bike path under Rijksmuseum Amsterdam to open tomorrow

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On a dreary Saturday I snapped this picture of the entrance to the recently opened Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

This is also a photo of the only bike path in the world that bicycles are not (yet) allowed on, which is why there are barriers and security guards.

When in 2003 renovations started the architects came up with a plan to move the museum entrance from the side to the tunnel underneath the museum. This would bring museum visitors in closer proximity to the cyclists who fully expected to still be able to use their age old bike path. The footpath (not shown here) is several meters wide, but as anybody who lives in Amsterdam knows, tourists will not look where they walk.

Museum director Wim Pijbes has traditionally been against the bike path, Eindhovens Dagblad reports, and probably would shed no tears if people stopped noticing that there was one.

Although the Netherlands does have a concept of right of way (recht van overpad), people here make much less of deal about it than in, say, the United Kingdom where the Rambler’s Association actively works to keep public paths over private property open. The Rijksmuseum is, as the name implies, publicly owned.

The new Rijksmuseum opened on 13 April of this year. The bike path will be opened tomorrow evening, although the city reserves the right to close it ‘at busy times’ until it has had the time to put in extra security measures.

1 Comment »

  1. That’s great news. I can’t wait to ride my bike on that path! Although, I suppose it will be quite a busy area…

    Comment by amsterdamian — May 14, 2013 @ 10:26 am

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