The municipality of Groningen has announced plans to open an underground bicycle parking garage at the Grote Markt. The new parking facility and the existing garage at the Nieuwe Markt will be capable of holding around 3,000 parked bikes, the Groninger Internet Courant reports. The free parking, which is being constructed underneath the old V&D building just off the main city square, is expected to become operational by the end of March.
Groningen residents regard their city as the cycling capital of the Netherlands. Two thirds of all trips in the city are made by bicycle. The Groningen authorities hope the new garage, which is set to cost the city about €5.4 million, will alleviate the acute shortage of parking spaces in the center of the city.