UG wants a bike-free Broerplein to become a green space

The UG and the city of Groningen want the Broerplein to become a bike-free location. The square could even become a green space by the university’s next anniversary.

There are no concrete plans yet; the project is still in its early stages. But it’s clear that the UG and the city want a bike-free square in an effort to improve traffic conditions.

The hundreds of bicycles that are usually parked in front of the Academy building every day, will be moved to what’s currently still the University library’s (UB) warehouse.

Bike-free square

The new bicycle storage facility will have room for 1,200 student bikes and one hundred staff bikes. A wider entrance will be created at the Poststraat, so students can walk their bikes inside.

This would result in a bike-free Broerplein. ‘Our director would love to turn the square into a green space’, says UB spokesperson Babette Knauer.

Before any of this can happen, however, the UB warehouse needs to be reorganised. ‘The condition we have is that we want a proper location to store the books that will have to be removed from the warehouse’, says Knauer. According to her, various scenarios are being developed. 

Innovative education spaces

Depending on the storage solution, the UB thinks the resulting space, which would include the ground floor and the first floor in addition to the basement, could be used for more than just bicycle parking.

The UB would like to fill this space with ‘innovative education opportunities’, the notes from the most recent employee council say. ‘For example, education spaces that could transform into study spaces when there aren’t any classes being taught’, says Knauwer. 

Desires and possibilities

According to Knauer, the UB is in talks with the city centre’s faculties to ‘explore the desires and possibilities’. The UB is also waiting on the Property and Investment Projects department’s vision for the entire academic quarter.

‘That vision will be published this spring; people are working hard on it’, says Knauer. ‘The UB would love a connecting entrance to the University museum.’


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