TWO NEW stations are to be built at Tilburg Reeshof and Almere Oostvaarder, following the approval by the Dutch cabinet of a €6m package of works, which also include lengthening of the platfoms at Driebergen-Zeist.

In another station improvement scheme, the main hall at Amsterdam Amstel was formally reopened on April 15, following the completion of a two year refurbishment programme. Kiosks and signs have been moved to provide more space, and replacement windows installed to improve natural lighting.

It is estimated that around one-third of Netherlands Railways’ passengers arrive at their departure station by bicycle, and the OV-fiets bicycle hire scheme is currently being expanded to make onward travel easier.

Developed in conjunction with the Netherlands’ national cycling body Fietsersbond, OV-fiets offers bicycle hire for €2·50 a trip. Electronic registration is combined with a smart card, so that users do not need to leave a deposit. ProRail and NS hope to have hire points available at 50 stations by the end of this year.

H Experimental mobile telephone-free quiet carriages have been introduced on Amsterdam - Vlissingen and Nijmegen - Den Helder inter-city trains.