The Ranty Highwayman)
This week, my taste of Dutch cycling infrastructure has a little look at how space and time are used to get people cycling through busy junctions.
Just along from the side road I looked at last time, Middenweg intersects with Kruislaan to form a signalised crossroads. Middenweg runs southeast to northwest (towards central Amsterdam) and Kruislaan runs southwest to northeast. The northeastern arm connects to the University of Amsterdam Science Park and the southwestern arm is a distributor type road connecting with residential areas and other suburbs (but not as large a road as Middenweg).
I should state that this is just one junction – others are available in terms of layout and operation and there are issues here which I’ll cover later. Hindsight is wonderful as in researching this post, I have found out I could have seen another roundabout and some serious railway overpasses.
But, it was a holiday and I was out for a cycle with my son who had to keep stopping for me to take photos!
The photo above shows Middenweg as we cycled northwest towards central Amsterdam. As we’ve come to expect on big roads, we’ve motor traffic in its own space (with a tram in the middle), a verge for trees and highway “stuff” (and to provide a safety buffer for people cycling), a smooth red cycletrack and footway, raised slightly above the cycle track. The kerb between the cycle track and the footway is not forgiving (sloped) which shows that even the Dutch can be behind their own best practice!
As we get closer to the junction, the verge becomes a narrower paved strip to give way for a left turn traffic lane.