Another stage of the F50 fast cycle route finished

The F50 fast cycle route from Oss to Uden in the south of the Netherlands is under construction. When I cycled the route last July 2020 road works were on-going south-east of the village of Nistelrode. According to the municipal website those works would be finished in week 37 (the second week of September 2020). To see if that was the case I cycled to Nistelrode again last December and I indeed found that this part of the cycle route was finished. That means I can show you a before and after. In the video (and the stills in this post) I compare the state of the route in July and December 2020.

I start my comparison in the Hoogstraat in Nistelrode. In July the route had been finished until the end of this street. Although this part was finished, even here something changed: one of the houses on the right hand side has been painted white.
The end of the Hoogstraat formed a T-junction with a street called Delst. In the before situation there were one-way cycle paths on either side of that street. In the new situation there is a wide bi-directional cycleway at the north-east side. That meant the T-junction has been re-designed. You can now continue from the cycle street to the main cycle route without interaction with motor traffic on Delst.
The above T-junction in reality. In the before situation you had to cycle to the other side of the road and then turn left. In the new situation you can cycle almost straight-on and it is motor traffic that has to turn right first to reach the main road.
Delst was a road with a one-way cycle path on either side of the road. Due to the starting road works I had to cycle on part of that road in the beginning. In the new situation everybody cycles on the north-east side of the road on a bi-directional cycleway.
Just south-east of the built-up area of Nistelrode the bi-directional cycleway switches to the other side of the road. To make that safely possible the travel lanes for motor traffic have been split to make a central refuge space. Motor traffic is slowed down by this design. People can cross the lane for one direction at the time now.
The crossing when you approach it. The sight lines are very clear. The two people crossing the road demonstrate how wide the central refuge space is. There is more than enough space for several people to wait there safely when they can’t make the crossing in one go. Cycling has priority over the smaller side road, but you have to wait for motor traffic on the main road. This is what most Dutch traffic users would expect. It follows the general priority rules.
From here on the bi-directional cycleway is on the south-west-side of the road. You can see that the cycleway is widened. There is a new surface of smooth red asphalt and there are also tactile lines on the edges of the cycleway. To paint lines on the edges of the cycle ways is relatively new in the Netherlands, but this helps people to better see where the edge of the asphalt is and it thus improves safety. A lot of single vehicle crashes happen when people come too close to such edges and end up besides the asphalt and fall.
At this location the new cycleway moves a bit more to the left to run between two existing lines of trees. (Thin dotted lines show the former location.) Right of the trees there would not have been enough space between a ditch and those trees for the new and wider cycleway. It meant the loss of three trees to make the shift possible.
The new cycleway takes a route between the two lines of trees. There are no sharp bends to make that happen. If you didn’t know the before situation you would not be able to tell something changed here. The route flows naturally. There are several holes besides the new cycleway. That is where replacement trees will yet be planted.
Crossings with side streets have also been reconstructed. It is now clearer that the cycleway has priority over that side street.
It seems to be less green between the cycleway and the roadway. That is not only because it was winter in the after images. Some of the shrubs have been removed deliberately to improve the feeling of social safety. When you know motorists can see you on the cycleway the risk of unwanted things happening there is perceived as lower.
The “ecoduct” or wildlife crossing Slabroek marks the municipal border between Bernheze and Uden. It is very clear that Uden has not widened the cycleway at this location. There is even a warning sign to inform that the cycleway narrows considerably. A missed opportunity and in my opinion it is also not the best place to have that narrowing; exactly in the shade cast by the wildlife crossing.
Uden did resurface the cycleway but you can see that it is now much too narrow to make side-by-side cycling comfortably possible. I had trouble passing these people safely. I have no idea why Uden decided to keep this short part of the cycle route this narrow. It is only a few hundred metres before the route becomes wider again and there seems to be more than enough space, so it must have to do with money.
From this location the cycleway becomes wider again and from here on there had been no changes compared to last July. That is why I end the comparison here. In the previous post you can see how the route continues.

Video comparison of the F50 before and after reconstruction of the part in the municipality of Bernheze,
south-east of Nistelrode until the border with Uden.

2 thoughts on “Another stage of the F50 fast cycle route finished

  1. Love this! I am hopeful that rural North Carolina USA will start to do this. Our roads are way too narrow and with 45 to 55mph speed limits (out side city limits) riding is very risky. Do the wildlife overpasses really work?

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