For this week’s extra post I rode around in my hometown ʼs-Hertogenbosch, including through
the intersection of my last post. This ride was filmed on a Friday afternoon early September this year and it still has that summer’s feel. I ride from the market square and city hall in the city centre to the outskirts in the north of the city and back. I pass a few locations described in earlier blog posts that I will link to from the photo captions. Most importantly, I think this ride shows how well connected all the cycling infrastructure is. It may look different at different locations, but you can take an easy ride because of all of it combined.
The beginning and end of this ride. The square in front of city hall. The square is called ‘Markt’ (Market). I filmed people passing by here for an earlier blog post.
The city centre has some streets that are clearly not only for motor traffic. You can drive down this street in a car, but the space is mainly designed for people. A brick surface is one of the first signs in the Netherlands that you are not on a through road. This is one of the streets you can see in the food delivery video.
Children play alone in the play grounds of the city. They also cycle alone, but not this young. These two young children are accompanied by their dad, but they can cycle well at this age.
One of the residential streets the city transformed in recent years. The red asphalt indicates that bicycles are king here and the car is a guest. Even though the city of ʼs-Hertogenbosch doesn’t use the cycle street signs (which are still not legal yet) the city does use the design of a cycle street. This street was converted in 2012.
On the bigger main distributor roads separate cycling infrastructure is the norm. Not painted on-street lanes, but genuinely protected cycleways, here with a hedge. Children, like this boy on his e-bike (!), can cycle to school safely thanks to this type of infrastructure. I once compared winter cycling to summer cycling in this street.
At this location there is a wooden overpass with the F59 fast cycle route from ʼs-Hertogenbosch to Oss on it. The overpass was specifically built for the school on the left of this main road. Children can pass the road safely. This overpass was one of the factors to name the city ‘Cycling city of the Netherlands’ in 2011.
Much of the cycling infrastructure in ʼs-Hertogenbosch is bi-directional. But where it is like that the bi-directional cycleway is either not connected to a road (the type the Dutch call solitary cycleways) or there is infrastructure on both sides of the road. In that case that you can choose on which side of the road cycling is most convenient for the particular journey you are making. In this case there is a cycle path on the other side of the road too, but there only in the driving direction.
The city of ʼs-Hertogenbosch converted many four arm intersections into roundabouts. Existing roundabouts were sometimes upgraded to the latest design standards. That is the case here. This roundabout was changed to meet the latest design recommendations. I showed this roundabout in an earlier post.
This is an example of a so-called ‘solitary bi-directional cycleway’. In this case there is not a road in sight, but it is a main cycle route. In fact it is the main cycle route from the north of the city to the city centre. I showed the entire route in Summer but also in the snow.
People with some form of disability can use the cycleways in their mobility scooters, even to walk their dog. Thanks to the sufficiently wide cycleways two people cycling side by side can then still pass on their own side.
This was once seen as a main road. As such it had 4 lanes for cars (2×2) and a painted on-street cycle lane. In 2013, it has been converted to a 2×1 road with separated one-way cycleways on either side of the street, as described in my earlier post.
This is the approach to the big intersection that was recently reconstructed and which I showed in my previous post. You hardly notice you are approaching a major intersection. The cycleway doesn’t narrow or wind because of it. It just continues as the main cycle route it is.
Here the cycle route changes from a bi-directional cycleway to one-way cycle tracks on either side of the road in the far distance. You can choose which way you traverse the intersection on the right. The traffic light shows that it is now quicker to ride around it via the right hand side. Other times it may be quicker to take the route left around it. I explained this traffic light in an earlier post. For this ride I take a left turn, so the light is not informative now. This intersection will be changed dramatically in future. The bridge in the distance is at the end of its life-span and the replacement is planned in a different location and much narrower since this is no longer considered a through route. It is merely the entrance road to the historic city centre.
This street has a brick surface again. That means we have re-entered the historic city centre and this is no longer mainly ‘car space’. This street is a 30km/h zone and that also means that separated cycling infrastructure is not necessary.
Back in the middle of the historic city centre. At this location it is the cyclist who is a guest. This is the pedestrianised shopping area. Some people chose to push their bicycles, but you may also cycle here, as long as you are careful around pedestrians. To the right city hall, the end of the ride. To the left the towers of the city’s cathedral, from which I once filmed people cycling by.
Map of the ride
Video of this ride that was filmed on Friday 4 September 2020 between 3 and 4 pm