Maastricht takes major thoroughfare underground
Maastricht, the capital of Limburg province in the Netherlands, has embraced the concept of repurposing by turning what used to be a major highway running through the heart of the city into a new public space.
The A2 highway now tunnels beneath the city and the area on top of the tunnel is now known as De Groene Loper, or the Green Carpet. A six-metre-wide path for pedestrians, cyclists and joggers now runs through the park and connects the eastern and western parts of the city. A cycle bridge also connects the northern historic country estates with the rest of the city.
Maastricht prides itself on being a ‘15-minute city’, where all essential services and amenities are within a 15-minute walk or bike ride from home. Everything in the city – from restaurants and parks to cultural attractions and exhibition centres – can be easily reached on foot or by bike.
The city has also heavily invested in public transport, with an extensive electric bus network and plenty of free underground bike parking facilities.
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