Netherlands to Build Ten Miles Long Heated and Cooled Bicycle Path

Back in 2012, the Netherlands announced its intention to build several heated paths for bicycles, necessary to reduce the number of accidents involving cyclists. Six years later, the longest such stretch of tarmac is poised to link the cities of Wageningen and Arnhem.
Cyclists could travel between Dutch cities even in winter 1 photo
The path would be some 17 km (10 miles) in length, becoming the longest such construction in Europe, at least. Opinions are divided when it comes to the world title, as there might be a longer one in China.

Details on how the path will be constructed are sketchy. According to Standaard, the asphalt used will be able to absorb and store heat during summer and then gradually releasing it during winter. Because it absorbs heat, the asphalt also keeps things cool under the hot summer sun.

The path is to be built in the middle of the Jufferswaard, a nature reserve in the area. This has prompted environmentalist groups to say that the heated tarmac would act as a magnet for local wildlife, especially frogs.

“There was a lot of fear that frogs in the road would want to stay there but we will follow the impact on the smaller animals very closely,” said Petra Borsboom, a spokeswoman for Gelderland council, according to The Guardian.

The main advantage of having a path in that location is that it would cut travel distance between the two cities by some 600 meters. Having it heated also means not using salt that would eventually eat at the asphalt, so when it will be ready, in 2019, it should be good for tens of years.

And there is also the possibility for cyclist to travel this way during winter as well.

The Netherlands is a very bicycle-friendly country. There are some 35,000 km (21,700 miles) of path physically separated from motor traffic. According to various sources, there are more than 13 million bicycles in a country with a population of a little over 17 million.


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories