Brussels Airport Company, the province of Flemish Brabant and the municipality of Zaventem have agreed to build a cycle path in the short term that is to connect the airport to the Leuven-Brussels cycle route. By developing the various means of commuting, Brussels Airport Company aims to contribute towards improved mobility in the region. The cycle track should be ready by the beginning of 2018 at the latest.
Brussels Airport is a multimodal hub where several means of transport connect. Each day, 1,000 busses, over 200 trains, 20,000 cars, 500 trucks and 600 aircraft come to the airport. In order to keep the airport optimally accessible for passengers and employees, the airport operator, Brussels Airport Company, works with various partners on improving the accessibility of the airport and on providing solutions to the mobility issues in the region.
In this context, Brussels Airport Company is joining forces with the province of Flemish Brabant and the municipality of Zaventem to construct a cycle path that will connect the airport with the Leuven-Brussels fast cycle route.
"Around 1% of the employees currently comes to Brussels Airport by bike or on foot. But the potential is much bigger. With the construction of the cycle route, Brussels Airport Company will be able to provide the airport employees with a new, safe and fast option for coming to work. As airport operator, we want to cooperate on the development of every possible means of commuting, with a view to improving mobility throughout the region", says Arnaud Feist, CEO of Brussels Airport Company.
The cycle route to the airport is a branch of the existing cycle route between Leuven and Brussel. The province of Flemish Brabant is delighted with this extension of the network. Tom Dehaene, Mobility vice-governor of the province of Flemish Brabant, says: "The province extended the cycle route between Leuven and Brussel in recent years and has long been advocating a direct cycle link between the cycle route and the airport. We are pleased that Brussels Airport Company and the municipality of Zaventem want to join us in realising this cycle link, thus making the airport more accessible for the airport's cycling employees, and who knows, also for passengers who want to come to the airport by bike."
The municipality of Zaventem is also backing the cycle project. "The municipal council of Zaventem will cooperate actively on the upgrading of the HST cycle route (named after the HST rail link which it runs alongside of) so that it can become a real alternative means of travel. To this end, Zaventem together with the province and Brussels Airport Company, intends to further develop the cycle route between the railway stations of Nossegem and Diegem and also add a branch of the cycle route leading to the airport. The final parts of the HST cycle route will be a cycle bridge over the Brussels Ring and convenient cycle-path links in the airport area. There is a strong correlation between the optimisation of the Brussels Ring and the HST cycle route. The cycle route can also be used as an additional measure when the optimisation operations on the Brussels Ring commence", says Francis Vermeiren, mayor of Zaventem.
In an initial phase, a study will be carried out to determine the exact track of the cycle route to the airport. A part of the cycle route will lie along the old railway track bed in Zaventem, and how the track should continue to Brussels Airport terminal is part of the study. In addition, among other things it must be examined where inclines and crossings with other roads are located, and what materials should be used in the construction of the cycle route. The study should be completed by the end of 2016, so that work for the construction of the cycle route can start in 2017. The cycle route should be completed by the beginning of 2018 at the latest.