Why is cycling so popular in the Netherlands

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Snail
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Why is cycling so popular in the Netherlands

Post by Snail »

Here's an interesting link explaining the popularity of cycling in Holland:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-2358 ... icRSS20-sa

Like most people I suppose who've visited Holland (well, Amsterdam :wink: ), one thing which I really noticed was the cycling (apart from, er, other things of course :wink: ). Young people would cycle from nightclubs and bars for example. Very unlike this country, where bikes are more treated as exercise machines I think, rather than transport tools.
Little John
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Post by Little John »

cos it's flat.
Blue Peter
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Post by Blue Peter »

stevecook172001 wrote:cos it's flat.
And cycle paths, and cyclists have priority (and they have stupid laws about traffic joining from the right which must make driving difficult),


Peter.
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emordnilap
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Post by emordnilap »

Dublin is getting better and better for non-car users; the Luas (tram) is brilliant (and so usually full!) and is being extended; bikes are for hire all round the city; lorries are largely banned from the city centre and permits are used for deliveries; the speed limits are quite low too. All in all, going the right way.

But as with all things Dublin, it's a different country to that of which it claims to be the capital. Ireland has one of the highest car usage figures in Europe and, significantly, one of the highest per-capita CO2 emissions.

The EU could well do with spreading Dutch and similar ideas regarding safety and cyclists Europe-wide.
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JavaScriptDonkey
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Post by JavaScriptDonkey »

stevecook172001 wrote:cos it's flat.
and they have a population density approaching 500 people per square km with over 80% of them living in an urban environment.


Hardly much need for cars really when everyone else is just so close.
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biffvernon
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Post by biffvernon »

According to this list http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.URB.TOTL.IN.ZS
the percentage of the population living in urban areas in the Netherlands is 84% whereas in the UK it is 80%

Other things being equal (which they definitely are not) I would prefer Ethiopia. :)
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Post by cubes »

I cycle to work all year round (except when icy) and this is my opinion of some of the reasons why cycling is less popular here.

The crappy standard of driving most drivers over here exhibit. Speeding, passing to close to cyclists when passing and running red lights 1-2 seconds after they change - even speeding up 'to make sure'. Then they complain about the low standard of cycling... :(
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Post by Tarrel »

Worth having a look at this video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbp95LNgV_I

It's presented by Jan Gehl, an architect and urban planner who specialises in "cities for people". The video focuses on Copenhagen, but I think there are similarities with Amsterdam.
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Post by Tarrel »

Young people would cycle from nightclubs and bars for example.
:D Can you imagine that after a typical Saturday night out in a British city? It would be carnage! People in micro-skirts and high heels wobbling about all over the place while still trying to down another bottle of WKD.
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JavaScriptDonkey
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Post by JavaScriptDonkey »

cubes wrote:I cycle to work all year round (except when icy) and this is my opinion of some of the reasons why cycling is less popular here.

The crappy standard of driving most drivers over here exhibit. Speeding, passing to close to cyclists when passing and running red lights 1-2 seconds after they change - even speeding up 'to make sure'. Then they complain about the low standard of cycling... :(
How odd.

Most drivers I know complain about cyclists getting in the way and constantly weaving across the road on machines ill-suited to the conditions.*

I suppose that because the motorists have passed a test to prove they can be safe and have to ensure their vehicles are roadworthy and insured that they think they are somehow entitled and even qualified to judge the behaviour of cyclists.

(*Mostly lycra clad leisure cyclists racing in packs who infest the roads down my neck of the woods.)
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biffvernon
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Post by biffvernon »

Cyclists got there first. Motorists are the Johnny-come-latelies.
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Snail
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Post by Snail »

Does the electric-car have a future? If not (as in used by the masses like conventional cars), then cyclists will be here last as well.
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Post by biffvernon »

Spot on!
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PS_RalphW
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Post by PS_RalphW »

Government have announced £90m spend on cycling infrastructure. Almost enough for 1 mile of the new A14 - and of course dependent on matched funding from the private sector - for 6 cities including Cambridge.

It will be building segregated cycle paths on-road on some of the straightest, widest, and least dangerous cycle routes in the city, but they will stop as soon as the roads narrow and cars and cyclists start to conflict.

This is normal design for cycle facilities in Cambridge.

That said, it does include the stretch where I was twice nearly taken out in the last 2 years. It will be interesting to see how they handle priority at junctions, will the cycle path get priority, Dutch style, or will the lane simply give naive cyclists false sense of security as usual?
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Post by Little John »

RalphW wrote:Government have announced £90m spend on cycling infrastructure. Almost enough for 1 mile of the new A14 - and of course dependent on matched funding from the private sector - for 6 cities including Cambridge.

It will be building segregated cycle paths on-road on some of the straightest, widest, and least dangerous cycle routes in the city, but they will stop as soon as the roads narrow and cars and cyclists start to conflict.

This is normal design for cycle facilities in Cambridge.

That said, it does include the stretch where I was twice nearly taken out in the last 2 years. It will be interesting to see how they handle priority at junctions, will the cycle path get priority, Dutch style, or will the lane simply give naive cyclists false sense of security as usual?
I don't use cycle lanes that are simply tagged in as green tarmac lanes up against the kerb of the roads in this country. They are downright dangerous for the cyclist. They tend to force the cyclist to ride over the drains and also stop unexpectedly, leaving the cyclist trapped against the kerb while the cars go rushing past. They are just plain stupid. I get in the centre of the left hand half of a given lane and stay there till I am ready to pull off. If car can get past, that great, if they can't that's tough. The thing is, they know where they are with such an arrangement and, also, if they decide to cut me up, I have plenty of lane to my left to retreat into if necessary. I completely ignore cycle lanes.

The best solution would be a completely segregated road network for cyclists - at least in the cities.
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