Some of my posts take shape by accident. This is one such post. I wanted to film for an upcoming post at a location south of the Beneluxtunnel in Schiedam. The nearest place to rent an OV-Fiets would be the railway station Schiedam. There are apps to check how many bicycles are available, but that information is notoriously unreliable. In this case the Dutch Railways app showed there would be 18 bicycles available. Reason to travel to Schiedam. I thought that would be a safe margin. Even if it was off by 50% there would still be 9 bicycles, right? Well, the app turned out to be 100% off… Yes, there were at least 10 bicycles parked in the racks, but none of them was available (they were apparently all broken in some way). The rest was missing (stolen or otherwise). I shared my thoughts about this with an employee who happened to visit the bike parking garage. I was very clear and very Dutch (blunt), and I got support from two other disappointed customers! (We did keep it decent, it wasn’t his personal fault!) But after this little chat I did have to find an alternative.
According to the same app, the nearest rental station, that would not take me too far from the film location, was at Metro station Marconiplein in Rotterdam. That is about 2 kilometres east of Schiedam. It would add only about 1.5 kilometres of cycling extra to my round trip, so that was very acceptable. I went there by metro and I was lucky: the number of available bicycles there was accurate. This meant I could reach my film destination and, on my way back, I filmed the ride. I showed you the ride in the Benelux tunnel as a short video earlier, in this post, I will show the unplanned ride from the tunnel to the metro station in Rotterdam.
This is a ride in the outskirts of both Schiedam and Rotterdam and both places have excellent cycling infrastructure. At the risk of insulting people, I must say that I do not see any difference between Schiedam and Rotterdam in these particular areas of the cities. Even the Rotterdam tram runs in Schiedam as well. In most other countries in the world Schiedam would probably be a suburb of Rotterdam, but in the Netherlands they are two separate cities.
I did cycle around the edge of the centre of Schiedam, where the infrastructure was a bit older. That meant there was an older type of surface on the cycle ways there, such as concrete tiles, and the cycle ways were a bit narrower. Other than that, the infrastructure was in top condition. I could cycle the 5.3 kilometres in 18 minutes, which meant that I reached an average speed of 17.6km/h including several (longer) stops at traffic lights.
Map of the route.