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26 August 2019

Gido Boere on the e-cargo bike

"We're faster, can park easily, and improving our fitness while we work"

Together with nine other colleagues, Gido Boere is a facility manager and coordinates all technical jobs and caretaker jobs for Maastricht University’s ten locations in the city centre. ‘Now that the students are back from their holidays, we are hard at work again. For that work, we will be using Maastricht Bereikbaar’s electric cargo bike for the next two weeks. Using it means we’re faster, can park easily, and improving our fitness while we work.’

Being good caretakers

‘Whether it's fitting a new lightbulb, replacing a broken paving stone, or repairing a toilet that does not flush properly, we make sure that the work gets done. We also regularly transport items between locations, such as during an internal move or when delivering sandwiches. We currently use a diesel van to drive to and from the buildings. For the next two weeks, we will be using an e-cargo bike instead. The bike provides a very smooth cycling experience, looks great, and is a great fit for our ambitions to be good caretakers. Using this bike makes us faster, which means we can respond more quickly to people who use our services. There is no need to take a detour because certain streets are only one-way. Simply put, the bicycle is the faster way to get from A to B in the city centre.’

Tailor-made

Gido and his colleagues have noticed some drawbacks to the model of the electric cargo bike, saying ‘We think it is rather large, making it slightly difficult to manoeuvre in the narrow streets in Maastricht city centre. We think that a cargo bike with two sidewheels would be better. The cargo bike also does not fully meet our expectations at the moment, but we can get it tailor-made at a later stage. For example, we would like the compartment to be accessible from the side, and a shelf in the compartment for things such as loose tools.’

Diesel begone!

‘Cycling around with the electric cargo bike has really opened our eyes. We now know what kind of alternative transport is possible in the city centre. We are definitely getting rid of the diesel van. The possibilities are endless. Our colleagues at the technical department in Randwyck, for example, drive around in an electric truck, the Melex Cargo, which can reach a maximum speed of 40 km/hour. That would not be as useful for us, because mini trucks are not allowed to drive against the flow of traffic in one-way streets and finding a parking space is still a challenge.’