Friday, March 26, 2010

Riverside bicycle road extended to Hanam

On March 31, the bike road following the Southern riverside of Hangang will by prolonged Eastwards by a new 13.5 km section, completing a 49.3 km-long Goyang*-Seoul-Hanam stretch.

The new section starts from Gwangnaru recreational park (광나루 유원지) in Gwangjin-gu, passes by Amsa-dong, Gangdong-gu (famous for its prehistoric site), and reaches the Paldang Bridge (팔당대교) in Hanam.

At that bridge, you are at the feet of two mountains : Duribong (566 m) in Hanam, and Yebongsan (679 m) in Namyangju on the other side of the river. So far, these hulky patches of green have kept urban development at bay, and I hope the Gwangju-Seongnam-Hanam merger** will not ruin this area.

From this new terminus, the bike lane may continue upstream towards the Paldan Dam and beyond Yangpyeong area, a very touristic spot. It could also connect to Namyangju city, right across the bridge.

But for the moment, Gyeonggi-do has already a lot of fish to fry. The province has invested KRW 70 bn in bicycle infrastructures since 2007, and 5 other projects are about to be completed, totalling 27.1 km :
. 5.6 km in Ansan : Sihwa Industrial Complex - Seonggok-dong
. 9 km in Gimpo : Han-gang New Town - Unyang Samgeori
. 2 km in Pyeongtaek : Songbuk-dong (Ojwa Samgeori) - Seojeong-dong (Bokchang Overpass)
. 6.5 km in Dongducheon : Bosan Station - Habongam-dong
. 4.0 km in Yeoncheon-gun : Dosin-ri (Sinseo-myeon) - Yeoncheon Bridge

Of course, Gyeonggi-do (over 10,000 square kilometers) will never have a network as dense as Seoul (605 sqkm, already 10 times more bicycle infrastructures), but that's a beginning.

Of course, this is by no means a network : Ansan is far (Southwest of Seoul) and Pyeongtaek even further. But the Gimpo New Town segment may eventually join the Goyang end of the Seoul lane... and with some imagination, the last two segments almost seem to be heading towards the Peace Bicycle Nuri Road** : the Jungnangcheon bike lane in Northeast Seoul already goes along Nowon-gu and towards Uijeongbu between Bukhansan and Seoraksan, why not continue in the same direction, straight to the North ? After Uijeongbu come Yangju, Dongducheon, Yeoncheon, Chorwon... and the DMZ.

Seoul Village 2010

* at Haengju Bridge (Deokyang-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do)
** see "
Gwangju completes the Seongnam-Hanam merger"
*** "
Take a ride on the wild side"

Map : gg.go.kr (Gyeonggi-do's website)

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