Ride on the Eindhoven ‘Slowlane’

For my ninth and – officially – last extra ride we stay in Eindhoven, where I showed you the Tegenbosch bridge in last week’s post. As I mentioned in that post Eindhoven has some impressive infrastructure. The 32 kilometre long oddly named ‘Slowlane’ is one of them. That is the main cycle route all around the city connecting the University of Technology to the High Tech Campus and the city hospital to the city centre, to name but a few destinations. I wrote about the ‘Slowlane’ before, but I never cycled the full route for a video before, I did now (clockwise).

00:10 I started (and ended) in the Silly Walks Tunnel. Always a joy to use that tunnel!

I planned to ride the 32km inner-loop (there are two options in the east) but unwillingly I rode (my own version of) the outer 34.5km long loop in 1 hour and 45 minutes. You can see the whole ride in real time. It isn’t one single shot, but I only had to stop filming a few times. Once when my batteries ran out and I had to change them, once when I lost my way and once when I was stung by a wasp! I cut the sound out because you don’t want to hear me scream. But yes, a wasp flew into my shirt and stung me in the chest. The final hour of the ride I wasn’t feeling too well. From 1:02:55 there is a before and after. The main ride was filmed 9 September, but when I filmed for last week’s post (on 28 October) I saw that construction of the cycleway was finished and I filmed the before and after at that location. More information with the stills.

04:33 This location in the city centre of Eindhoven was a building site last year. The Slowlane has been reconstructed and is now again fully usable. Inset: the situation in 2019. (Bilderdijklaan)
06:01 The Slowlane gives you priority over cars when you approach a crossing like this one on your bicycle. Car drivers politely let people cycling go first on such priority crossings. (Jan Smitzlaan)
08:50 There were some changes – even just a year later – on the part that I had cycled before. This tunnel got a funky appearance with some fresh paint. (Tunnel under Boutenslaan)
13:22 The route traverses the – seemingly – private area of Eindhoven’s High Tech Campus. There is a way to bypass this area if the gates are closed but I just followed the little S stickers on the surface and that led me here. (High Tech Campus/Professor Holstlaan)
18:10 Unfortunately, my little S companions would stop every now and then, so I did get lost a few times. This path is clearly not up to the high standards. Apparently the route was on the other side of the road. So, right road, wrong side of it. But I picked up the right route again soon after this. Still a nice path, even with the old tiles. (Roffart)
22:25 Some industrial areas are really well connected by the Slowlane, which is indeed also meant to give people an easy ride to their workplaces. (Meerenakkerweg)
27:16 This woman almost crashed into me where I had priority (at 27:07). She didn’t even seem to notice. Right on the horizon the famous Hovenring that I would use soon after this incident. (Peter Zuidlaan/Zoom)
30:30 The residential neighbourhood ‘Meerhoven’ has this road with a separate part for private cars (only interesting for residents and visitors to the area), a separate bus road (to the airport) and the main cycle route. Such streets are increasingly more common in the Netherlands. (Grasdreef)
33:19 The ‘Slowlane’ passes the old airport building that is now in the middle of a residential area, after the new airport was moved away a bit. The old building is beautifully restored and the housing matches its style. On the facade the words ‘Luchthaven Eindhoven’ (Eindhoven Airport). (Zandkasteel)
39:48 These three men were very aware that they were being filmed. Maybe because they realised that riding side by side with the three of them is illegal. It wasn’t a problem though, the route is so wide.
43:40 Always good to see so many different types of bicycles. In the distance a building site. There was a temporary cycleway around that building site. This is the location where I was stung by that wasp. (You can just see me swerve at 43:32 in shock and pain…)
46:49 This part in the north-west (near Best) is narrower than the rest of the Slowlane. There were markings on the surface and a sign telling me this part would soon be widened to match the rest of the route.
51:17 The route crosses railways a some points, such as the line from Eindhoven to ‘s-Hertogenbosch – Utrecht – Amsterdam here, but there aren’t any level crossings. Intercities, like this one, ride every 10 minutes in both directions. (De Dieze)
1:04:52 This part of the route was under construction in the summer. When I went back in the fall the cycleway was finished. I filmed the new situation and edited it into the video of the route. This is the newest part of the Slowlane. (Science Park Eindhoven)
1:10:30 A school had just ended in this part of Eindhoven. The mother shouted to her daughter that she should stay to the edge of the path more, but the child was not yet able to comply. She had trouble steering. That meant I had to brake a bit and go to my right as much as possible, which the mother clearly didn’t like. But it was no big deal for me. I saw why she unwillingly forced me to do that and it was a good enough reason. The child will learn soon enough. (Buitendreef)
1:16:08 At this location I took a wrong turn. The route turns right here! Yes, I also missed that. The S-markings clearly go left! Left, however, is going to Son, a town north of Eindhoven. The S markings are also used on paths leading to the Slowlane. Too confusing for me at this location. I meant I had to take the long outer loop in the end. (Roundabout Eindhovenseweg/Anconalaan)
1:19:05 My wrong turn took me to this rural road that has nothing to do with the Slowlane. I did see this driver being very nice to the horses. Slowing down to almost a standstill and being as far right as possible to not startle the horses. The driver hadn’t been that nice to me when I was passed moments earlier… (Bokt)
1:24:47 Back onto the Slowlane, but the recreational outer loop in the east of the city. A very nice path but clearly not a main route.
1:29:25 A 30km/h zone past a school. This driver was very impatient and passed these school children very closely where that really should not have been done. I had to almost leave the road here to not be hit. One driver endangering 7 people with one wrong move (There were 2 more children cycling in front of these 4). (Nuenenseweg)
1:31:12 These two police officers on bicycles looked at my camera and then decided to give me a smile and a friendly “hi”. (Amazonenlaan)
1:35:16 After waiting for over 2 minutes at this red light the woman and I looked at each other and we decided: “this one must be broken” and we went. There wasn’t a car in sight and we are Dutch. You cannot have a Dutch person waiting for no good reason. When I looked back the lights were finally changing. Not broken after all. Lesson: having people wait too long leads to dangerous situations. In ‘s-Hertogenbosch I am used to waiting times of 30 seconds at most. So this was simply unacceptable. (Corner Wasvenpad/Van Oldenbarneveltlaan, completely drifted away from the Slowlane again…)
1:39:16 Finally I get back to the right inner loop of the Slowlane! That comes from my left and turns here to my right. So I also took that right turn. Coincidentally, this is the exact location where I started my video in my earlier post about the Slowlane. (Corner Onze Lieve Vrouwestraat/Dominee Theodoor Fliednerstraat)
1:42:09 The route on the campus of the University of Technology of Eindhoven. There were still some people even though the university was practically closed due to the Corona pandemic. (Dutmalapad)
1:43:33 Back at the point where I started next to the river Dommel. From here I could take a right turn to quickly go to the railway station of Eindhoven. (Bridge over the Domel river in Stationsweg)
The official map of the Slowlane (with its two options in the east) is not detailed enough to always find your exact way. That is why my ride is slightly different at a few locations, I did ride most of the correct route though, where the S markings were clear.

Map on my ride of the slow lane.
(I wanted to go the blue route,
but instead went the long way to the east.)

Video of my 34.5km long ride on the Slowlane in 1h:44mins.
(Average speed 19.9km/h on a single speed rental bike)

This was officially the last of my nine extra rides, but there is a 10th bonus ride next Monday!

 

2 thoughts on “Ride on the Eindhoven ‘Slowlane’

    1. It was more painful than I remembered it to be, but I hadn’t been stung by a wasp in decades. The swelling lasted a few hours. After a few days it was all gone. This was the second time I was stung in my chest when a wasp flew into my shirt while cycling. The first time was in 1987.

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