Dutch City Bikes

Amsterdam2014-2058

I’m endlessly fascinated by the bikes of Amsterdam, in all their volume and variety, colorful, but practical urban transportation.

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Heavy and sturdy upright bikes with old fashioned handle bars and no top tube, they usually have a light and  are often equipped with a plastic milk crate style front basket.

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The Dutch love their fully sprung, big ass saddles, often a leather Brooks saddle.

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For obvious reasons, most Amsterdamers put a plastic cover over their saddle when leaving their bike parked outside.

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Some of the bikes are dressed up with decorations on the bars, a quick way to add some class to a vehicle that might be on its third or fourth coat of paint.

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With the purpose-built bike lots overflowing, bikes are parked everywhere, including alleys and bridges.

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Some of these bikes are clearly not going anywhere soon, and are almost certainly abandoned, victims of theft, vandalism, or neglect.

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The authorities periodically tag these derelict looking bikes, giving notice that they will be hauled to the bike pound unless moved within a few weeks.

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Normally hosting about 12,000 bikes at a time, the Amsterdam Bike Processing Center (Fietsdepot) waits 3 months for individuals to claim their lost bikes, and then humanely disposes of them.

Bikes parked on Amsterdam bridge

Hopefully, some of these orphans are adopted, to return to the streets of Amsterdam.

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