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  1. #576
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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    No, but you disingeniously, and once more, sneak in that myth of yours about Dutch cyclist being forced to ride slowly. Oh, and the danger, the danger!
    I measured the speed of all the cyclists commuting into the aerospace area of Mountain View, California, a situation typical of the polycentered suburb. The road was level, there was no wind. Median speed was 16 mph, lowest speed was 12 mph, 85th percentile speed was 18.5 mph. (Bicycle Transportation, 2nd ed, pg 111) I presume that this is the range of speeds that American commuting cyclists like to travel. I have seen no similar data from Europe. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting cycling shows speeds similar to these. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting shows a traffic situation in which such speeds would be possible.

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    No, but you disingeniously, and once more, sneak in that myth of yours about Dutch cyclist being forced to ride slowly. Oh, and the danger, the danger!
    The Dane doth protest too much. Average speeds in Holland are quite slow and the average distance per leg is simply absurd from a USAnian perspective. I would never commute 1 mile by bike.

  3. #578
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    I measured the speed of all the cyclists commuting into the aerospace area of Mountain View, California, a situation typical of the polycentered suburb. The road was level, there was no wind. Median speed was 16 mph, lowest speed was 12 mph, 85th percentile speed was 18.5 mph. (Bicycle Transportation, 2nd ed, pg 111) I presume that this is the range of speeds that American commuting cyclists like to travel. I have seen no similar data from Europe. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting cycling shows speeds similar to these. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting shows a traffic situation in which such speeds would be possible.
    Your standards of scholarship are astonishing. A set of measurements done in your home town, and a conclusion beginning 'I presume' ought to be good enough for Scientific American! And 'None of the pictures' is really quite a rigorous metric.

    Just out of curiosity, because I am sure not qualified to judge anything so formal and academic, how many pictures, roughly? In magazines or books? Color or black and white? And really, what kind of 'pictures,' photos or crayon?
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting cycling shows speeds similar to these. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting shows a traffic situation in which such speeds would be possible.
    You really, really, really, really, really, really, should travel to the NL some day.
    You would be amazed at the speed of a 65 year old Oma on her grocery-getter. And the speedy pelotons of teens rattling down the bike paths to school. Of course, you may choose to hide from all this, but doing so saps your credibility.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chicago Al View Post
    Your standards of scholarship are astonishing. A set of measurements done in your home town, and a conclusion beginning 'I presume' ought to be good enough for Scientific American! And 'None of the pictures' is really quite a rigorous metric.

    Just out of curiosity, because I am sure not qualified to judge anything so formal and academic, how many pictures, roughly? In magazines or books? Color or black and white? And really, what kind of 'pictures,' photos or crayon?
    You can be ironic if you like. What's wrong with taking measurements of commuting cyclists in my home town? Actually, not quite, but very close. There is no reason to suspect that my presence in a town either increases or decreases the speed of commuting cyclists. And note, as I stated, I measured the speed of all the cyclists who cycled into that aerospace area over the morning commuting time. That is, without selection for any special characteristic. I chose the location because the road was level, the morning winds were very light, and there was a considerable distance between traffic lights, to obtain measurements as unbiased as possible.

    As for pictures, both still and moving, of Dutch commute cycling traffic, plenty of these have been shown on the internet, either as videos or included in magazines advocating Dutch-style cycling that are also available on the internet, even being presented by those participating in these discussions.

  6. #581
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrous Bueller View Post
    You really, really, really, really, really, really, should travel to the NL some day.
    You would be amazed at the speed of a 65 year old Oma on her grocery-getter. And the speedy pelotons of teens rattling down the bike paths to school. Of course, you may choose to hide from all this, but doing so saps your credibility.
    Do you care to provide data on the speed range of "65 year old Omas on their grocery getters? I think that we would all appreciate real data.

    I am not hiding from any data; those who promote the Dutch cycling system have never provided data on the commuting speed ranges achieved in those parts of town with high bicycle mode share.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Do you care to provide data on the speed range of "65 year old Omas on their grocery getters? I think that we would all appreciate real data.
    maybe he's using those pictures you've been using.

    Actually, his depiction of dutch cycling is accurate, unlike yours.

    Quote Originally Posted by ferrous bueller
    I've lived in Holland and ridden extensively both there and here.
    One of the other questions I've never attempted to answer is "Why do Dutch people have three heads?"

    Those who advocate the Dutch system don't think your questions are at the heart of the discussion. I'm sorry, but they are making fun of you.
    its not just those that advocate dutch style cycling.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 04-19-13 at 08:15 PM.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  8. #583
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    I measured the speed of all the cyclists commuting into the aerospace area of Mountain View, California, a situation typical of the polycentered suburb. The road was level, there was no wind. Median speed was 16 mph, lowest speed was 12 mph, 85th percentile speed was 18.5 mph. (Bicycle Transportation, 2nd ed, pg 111) I presume that this is the range of speeds that American commuting cyclists like to travel. I have seen no similar data from Europe. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting cycling shows speeds similar to these. None of the pictures of typical Dutch commuting shows a traffic situation in which such speeds would be possible.
    Quote Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
    The Dane doth protest too much. Average speeds in Holland are quite slow and the average distance per leg is simply absurd from a USAnian perspective. I would never commute 1 mile by bike.

    You guys don't get it. And yet, we've been through it before. The average speed on Dutch cycle paths seem to be around 16 km/h, and it's slightly higher in Copenhagen. The reason it's so low is that every part of the population cycles. Children aged 4, grannies like my 80 years old mother (my dad doesn't count there, as he rides rather fast), as well as messengers or people like me. The reason that it's higher in Copenhagen is that fewer small kids ride here than in the Netherlands. In central Copenhagen, there are "green waves" for traffic lights, timed to suit a speed of ca. 20 km/h. That's quite fine for going through the heavy traffic in rush hours (A little slow for some of us, but live and let live etc. - and you get through inner Copenhagen faster on a bike than in a car durng rush hours). And for longer commutes on bike - like >7 km - most of your ride is on wide paths with lots of room for high speed*. On Strava you can see the speeds attained on the flat bike paths of even inner Copenhagen. I think that most of you guys would have a hard time following those cyclists...

    This must be the third time I tell you this. Can we stop now, please?


    *: Like this: https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.730364...174.98,,0,3.11
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.771939...29.14,,0,14.49
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.668969...cbp=11,95,,0,0
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.725708...,310,,0,0&z=14
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.573735...,295,,0,0&z=14
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.765552...&cbp=12,0,,0,0
    or this: https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.64262,...&cbp=12,0,,0,0
    or this: https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.634373...&cbp=12,0,,0,0
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.644945...bp=12,150,,0,0
    (The example from the northern coast road does, shamefully, not have a bike path all the way, but there's one alongside the adjacent railroad)
    The second one is a MUP, but for all practical purposes a bike path, as there are no pedestrians here. My average speed when I took that route last Sunday was around only 30-35 km/h. But then, it was only my second leisure ride after a long and harsh winter.
    Last edited by hagen2456; 04-20-13 at 03:51 AM.

  9. #584
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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    You guys don't get it. And yet, we've been through it before. The average speed on Dutch cycle paths seem to be around 16 km/h, and it's slightly higher in Copenhagen. The reason it's so low is that every part of the population cycles. Children aged 4, grannies like my 80 years old mother (my dad doesn't count there, as he rides rather fast), as well as messengers or people like me. The reason that it's higher in Copenhagen is that fewer small kids ride here than in the Netherlands. In central Copenhagen, there are "green waves" for traffic lights, timed to suit a speed of ca. 20 km/h. That's quite fine for going through the heavy traffic in rush hours (A little slow for some of us, but live and let live etc. - and you get through inner Copenhagen faster on a bike than in a car durng rush hours). And for longer commutes on bike - like >7 km - most of your ride is on wide paths with lots of room for high speed*. On Strava you can see the speeds attained on the flat bike paths of even inner Copenhagen. I think that most of you guys would have a hard time following those cyclists...

    This must be the third time I tell you this. Can we stop now, please?


    *: Like this: https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.730364...174.98,,0,3.11
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.771939...29.14,,0,14.49
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.668969...cbp=11,95,,0,0
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.725708...,310,,0,0&z=14
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.573735...,295,,0,0&z=14
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.765552...&cbp=12,0,,0,0
    or this: https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.64262,...&cbp=12,0,,0,0
    or this: https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.634373...&cbp=12,0,,0,0
    or this https://maps.google.dk/?ll=55.644945...bp=12,150,,0,0
    (The example from the northern coast road does, shamefully, not have a bike path all the way, but there's one alongside the adjacent railroad)
    The second one is a MUP, but for all practical purposes a bike path, as there are no pedestrians here. My average speed when I took that route last Sunday was around only 30-35 km/h. But then, it was only my second leisure ride after a long and harsh winter.
    Well, yes, I have always understood that Denmark is a largely agricultural nation.

  10. #585
    Senior Member mr_pedro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    You guys don't get it. And yet, we've been through it before. The average speed on Dutch cycle paths seem to be around 16 km/h, and it's slightly higher in Copenhagen. The reason it's so low is that every part of the population cycles. Children aged 4, grannies like my 80 years old mother (my dad doesn't count there, as he rides rather fast), as well as messengers or people like me.
    Exactly what I was thinking when reading the irrelevant comparisons of average speed.
    Also people use their bikes in every day clothes as part of everyday life. They don't always want to go at the maximum speed that they can.

  11. #586
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Well, yes, I have always understood that Denmark is a largely agricultural nation.
    I'm not sure about the relevance. However, I can inform you that Greater Copenhagen stretches out for miles and miles, covering lots of municipalities to a distance of c. 20 miles from the center. Some parts inside that radius are still agriculture, mostly because zoning laws have ensured that the citizens may still have access to open space, woods etc.

    The "largely" is wrong, by the way. That's an impression that must date from the 50's.
    Last edited by hagen2456; 04-20-13 at 02:33 PM.

  12. #587
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    Originally Posted by hagen2456
    You guys don't get it. And yet, we've been through it before. The average speed on Dutch cycle paths seem to be around 16 km/h, and it's slightly higher in Copenhagen. The reason it's so low is that every part of the population cycles. Children aged 4, grannies like my 80 years old mother (my dad doesn't count there, as he rides rather fast), as well as messengers or people like me.



    Quote Originally Posted by mr_pedro View Post
    Exactly what I was thinking when reading the irrelevant comparisons of average speed.
    Also people use their bikes in every day clothes as part of everyday life. They don't always want to go at the maximum speed that they can.
    I am sorry to read how it appears impossible for you people "to get" the importance the relationship between distance and speed and time. You praise commuting cyclists wearing business suits, and grocery-shopping grandmas propelling freight bikes, and how everybody at all ages cycles at low comfortable speeds. They can do so because these cyclists are making short trips over level ground. The short distances are because they are made in a society that matured as a walking city. The American commuting cyclist, often living in suburbia, has to make longer trips, often over hilly terrain, and, for much of the year, in much hotter weather. The greater length of the trips provides the reason for needing higher average speed, and the hills and weather are additional reasons for wearing cycling clothing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Originally Posted by hagen2456
    You guys don't get it. And yet, we've been through it before. The average speed on Dutch cycle paths seem to be around 16 km/h, and it's slightly higher in Copenhagen. The reason it's so low is that every part of the population cycles. Children aged 4, grannies like my 80 years old mother (my dad doesn't count there, as he rides rather fast), as well as messengers or people like me.





    I am sorry to read how it appears impossible for you people "to get" the importance the relationship between distance and speed and time. You praise commuting cyclists wearing business suits, and grocery-shopping grandmas propelling freight bikes, and how everybody at all ages cycles at low comfortable speeds. They can do so because these cyclists are making short trips over level ground. The short distances are because they are made in a society that matured as a walking city. The American commuting cyclist, often living in suburbia, has to make longer trips, often over hilly terrain, and, for much of the year, in much hotter weather. The greater length of the trips provides the reason for needing higher average speed, and the hills and weather are additional reasons for wearing cycling clothing.
    Er... you're totally lost, man.

    We've got that kind of bike commuters, too. They just don't make up the majority. Judging from the clothing that Copenhagen cyclists wear, I'd say that they're at least as many as are their American counterparts. But why shouldn't they be? After all, it's quite easy to attain high speeds on most of the network of bike paths. As I've already told you, by the way.

    Oh, and hills... we've got sleet, snow, and strong winds (you know, the kind of stuff Tom Boonen compared to alpine climbing). Doesn't keep (most) people from biking.

    Edit: You keep babbling about "walking cities". Where's the relevance? most of Copenhagen is post-1900, and as I've already told you, the sprawl is of American dimensions. You also once more bring up the "slow speed", in spite of the fact that lots of cyclists ride very fast.

    I really think it's time for you to realize that you're dead wrong about Dutch or Danish cycling.
    Last edited by hagen2456; 04-20-13 at 04:30 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    Oh, and hills... we've got sleet, snow, and strong winds (you know, the kind of stuff Tom Boonen compared to alpine climbing). Doesn't keep (most) people from biking.
    Actually, I personally prefer climbing even quite tough hills to riding in the typical Danish headwinds.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
    I would never commute 1 mile by bike.
    But why? You won't be forced to ride "slowly", unless it be during rush hours in the inner city cores. And you'll be safer riding your bike than any other place on the Earth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr_pedro View Post
    Exactly what I was thinking when reading the irrelevant comparisons of average speed.
    Also people use their bikes in every day clothes as part of everyday life. They don't always want to go at the maximum speed that they can.
    Maintaining highest possible speed, regardless of location or traffic conditions, may be a high priority for Mr. Forester and his suburban club cycling enthusiasts, but it is hardly the only consideration, if a consideration at all, for a very large percentage of people who do ride within urban areas. Safety, comfort, enjoyment, practicality are all important considerations that may rank quite a bit higher than knocking a minute or two off a commute or grocery run for "training" purposes or bragging rights about "efficiency."

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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    Maintaining highest possible speed, regardless of location or traffic conditions, may be a high priority for Mr. Forester and his suburban club cycling enthusiasts, but it is hardly the only consideration, if a consideration at all, for a very large percentage of people who do ride within urban areas. Safety, comfort, enjoyment, practicality are all important considerations that may rank quite a bit higher than knocking a minute or two off a commute or grocery run for "training" purposes or bragging rights about "efficiency."
    Right, in the end it is all about time, biking at a comfortable pace, not requiring to change clothes and shower at work is faster than taking the car with traffic jams and parking difficulties. My commute in the Netherlands was 25 minutes in morning rush hour by car for 7 miles. And cycling would be the same amount of time (with a much lower standard deviation). I would still go by car sometimes because of rain or having to drop off the kids.

  18. #593
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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post

    I really think it's time for you to realize that you're dead wrong about Dutch or Danish cycling.
    Yes, since the rest of the world already has. Hence the humorous overlay of some of the lunacies of vehikular cycling's ardent mouthpieces quote1.jpg juxtaposed against the photos of dutch cycling, that formed the basis of this thread. quote6.jpg
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    I am sorry to read how it appears impossible for you people "to get" the importance the relationship between distance and speed and time. You praise commuting cyclists wearing business suits, and grocery-shopping grandmas propelling freight bikes, and how everybody at all ages cycles at low comfortable speeds. They can do so because these cyclists are making short trips over level ground. The short distances are because they are made in a society that matured as a walking city. The American commuting cyclist, often living in suburbia, has to make longer trips, often over hilly terrain, and, for much of the year, in much hotter weather. The greater length of the trips provides the reason for needing higher average speed, and the hills and weather are additional reasons for wearing cycling clothing.
    You keep changing subject. I am responding to your remark that cycling speeds in NL are much lower than in the US and the suggestion that this is because of the infrastructure. So please take this from someone that has cycled around in the Netherlands, infrastructure is not the reason Dutch cycling speeds are lower than in the US.

    Apparently in the back of your mind is the ongoing theme in this thread about you defending why the Dutch model shouldn't be implemented in the US. Surely distances play an important role in giving you the choice of using bike or car in the first place. Explanations of why certain habits evolve in different countries are never as simple as what has been described in this thread. Many conditions are necessary but not sufficient to lead to heavy cycling usage.

    you don't have to go back to the middle ages to explain why distances in Europe are much smaller than in the US; In Europe city centers are actually nice places to live, full of activity in weekends as well. While in many major cities in the US it is a place to drive to to get to work and then drive out of when going home. Why the setup is like this, well I am sure there are many reasons and I am sure they are all from choices made much more recently.

    Anyway it is not sufficient to have small distance for high bike usage as many countries in Europe show us.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr_pedro View Post
    You keep changing subject. I am responding to your remark that cycling speeds in NL are much lower than in the US and the suggestion that this is because of the infrastructure. So please take this from someone that has cycled around in the Netherlands, infrastructure is not the reason Dutch cycling speeds are lower than in the US.

    Apparently in the back of your mind is the ongoing theme in this thread about you defending why the Dutch model shouldn't be implemented in the US. Surely distances play an important role in giving you the choice of using bike or car in the first place. Explanations of why certain habits evolve in different countries are never as simple as what has been described in this thread. Many conditions are necessary but not sufficient to lead to heavy cycling usage.

    you don't have to go back to the middle ages to explain why distances in Europe are much smaller than in the US; In Europe city centers are actually nice places to live, full of activity in weekends as well. While in many major cities in the US it is a place to drive to to get to work and then drive out of when going home. Why the setup is like this, well I am sure there are many reasons and I am sure they are all from choices made much more recently.

    Anyway it is not sufficient to have small distance for high bike usage as many countries in Europe show us.
    I have always limited my statements to the conditions applying in the old urban centers, in particular that of Amsterdam, because that is the location that is always so highly praised in America as having such a high bicycle mode share. So you post half a dozen pictures of largely rural bike paths with, as I remember, only one cyclist in view. And the example of high-speed cycling is given as being taken on a Sunday on one of the paths shown, which, almost certainly, is not cycling to work. I have to consider that those opposing my views are either ideological fools or deliberate jokers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    I have always limited my statements to the conditions applying in the old urban centers, in particular that of Amsterdam, because that is the location that is always so highly praised in America as having such a high bicycle mode share. So you post half a dozen pictures of largely rural bike paths with, as I remember, only one cyclist in view. And the example of high-speed cycling is given as being taken on a Sunday on one of the paths shown, which, almost certainly, is not cycling to work. I have to consider that those opposing my views are either ideological fools or deliberate jokers.
    You seem to mix up things. Yes, the urban centres like in Amsterdam or Copenhagen are well suited for biking, but they really are rather small, and the greater part of bike commuting takes place from the suburbs to the centre.

    By the way, it was not mr_pedro but me, who posted the many photos of bike paths. You pick out the one that is farthest from the city centre, taken on a lazy Sunday afternoon I gather, and ignoring that most of the routes shown are actually used by lots and lots of cyclists during rush hours. (I don't think, actually, that I've ever seen one place documented by Street View during rush hours. There might be a reason for that, hehe). However, the remoter parts of these routes are of course NOT nearly as much used for commuting as those closer to the centre. And those using them for long distances will typically be fast riders, often wearing cycling-specific clothing. just like your archetypical american bike commuter.

    and the examples are for the most part NOT from rural bike paths. If you care to take a look at the maps, you'll see that most of them are if not surrounded then in close proximity to suburbian sprawl.

    Once again, you're showing us your own special variety of total denial.
    Last edited by hagen2456; 04-21-13 at 02:28 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    You guys don't get it.
    Nah. You don't get it. Despite clear evidence that cyclists in the USA cycle longer median distances at faster speeds you are obsessed with making the round peg of north america fit into the square peg of your danish preconceptions.


    And for longer commutes on bike - like >7 km
    QED. 4 miles is a very short commute in North America.

    Children aged 4, grannies like my 80 years old mother (my dad doesn't count there, as he rides rather fast), as well as messengers or people like me.
    Pish. Cycling by chidren has seen a steady decline in Denmark. I hate to pop your I ♥ CPH bubble but I do not look to Denmark for inspiration. I look to Holland's far more anarchic anything goes model.

    I think that most of you guys would have a hard time following those cyclists...
    You really are uninformed. The entire mentality in north america is different when it comes to transportation cycling. I often find myself in a huge pack of cyclists attacking modest hills at speeds well in excess of 32 km/hr. Moreover, on my commute home its not uncommon for I and other cyclists to be in the vehicle lane travelling at 45+ km/h. Heck -- on the steepest downhill part of my commute I hit ~60 km/h just about every day (and have been doing so for decades). Separating cyclists from the bull does not tame the bull, it enables the bull.
    Last edited by spare_wheel; 04-21-13 at 05:50 PM.

  23. #598
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
    Despite clear evidence that cyclists in the USA cycle longer median distances at faster speeds
    which proves nothing, except a lack of children, families and elderly riding shorter distances at slower speeds compared to countries that facilitate bicycling.



    QED. 4 miles is a very short commute in North America.
    ? Naw, not that short. And, If you look at all trips outside the home, half of ALL trips outside the home in the USA are three miles or less.

    The entire mentality in north america is different when it comes to transportation cycling.
    among the few and the fearless riders of the type you and I self-identify with, yes. When cities do not facilitate bicycling, only the few and the fearless will cycle. I've seen this pattern repeated in city after city across the US that don't promote cycling.

    among cities that try to equitably promote bicycling, speed and 'travelling in the vehicle lane doing 45km/hr+' are much less important factors than equitable ridership and treatment of bikes as a class of vehicle.

    Ridership in cities that promote biking is significantly more proletariat that speed demons in lycra taking the lane at 45km/hr.



    Separating cyclists from the bull does not tame the bull...
    oh, it'd be nice to separate cycling from the bull - the bull in those photos that started the original post.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 04-21-13 at 07:54 PM.
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  24. #599
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    which proves nothing, except a lack of children, families and elderly riding shorter distances at slower speeds compared to countries that facilitate bicycling.
    I agree. In Finland and particularly in my hometown Oulu, bicycle is a popular form of commute due to short distances, and the city has invested heavily in the bicycle-pedestrian network. There's about 400 miles of it in a city of 130k people, almost all of which is separated from vehicles some way and a large portion of it being pedestrian/bicycle-only tracks. So I'd say we're rather similar to the Dutch in terms of bicycle commuting and infrastructure.

    In general, typical commuter/utility speeds seem to be closer to 20 km/h (13 MPH). There's several factors affecting the speed of commuter cyclists around here: 1) the bikes are of utilitarian quality and type (so-called "granny bikes"), 2) people might not cycle that much except for that mile or two now and then, 3) they are not interested in going very fast, and 4) old people and kids are well presented - bicycles are very attractive to older folks and to kids without a licence, and 5) distances are shorter in tightly-built European cities.

    We seem to have two classes of cyclists: the average joe who just goes out, grabs a barely-maintained old bike and and heads out a to the store or to work, and second, the lycra demons who race shiny carbon along the roadways. These two types of cyclists are also separated in speech: you have the 'utility' cyclists and you have the 'sport' cyclists. We also have the phenomenon of 'average joes' complaining how 'lycra demons' make bikeways less safe with their speed and how they actually SHOULD ride on car lanes - there's a bit of culture clash between the classes. (Obviously something that wouldn't exist if the average speeds of the groups were close to each other.)

    In general, I would say that separated bike traffic helps in promoting wider-spread 'average joe' cycling culture. Separation make it safer and easier for utilitarian cycling, especially when it comes to kids and old people.

    It's also important to remember that if you get more than a few bicycles per mile, they start affect vehicle traffic. In countries where cycling is seen as utilitarian, you might have dozens of bicycles per mile. It's simply impossible to fit all those bikes on a car lane, and this is one of the key reasons why the separated bike lanes/tracks exist.
    Last edited by proileri; 04-22-13 at 04:43 AM.

  25. #600
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Your recommendation for plain bike paths remote from roads sounds reasonable. Indeed, when we first worked out the standards for such bikeways we thought that they would be operated as miniature roads. However, that never came to pass. The traffic on American bike paths remote from roads operates with practically no rules at all, with a mixture of cyclists, pedestrians, and dogs. The cyclist who tries to operate on such facilities as if they were roads is running high risks.
    Sure, there are pedestrians and dogs to watch for. However, the speed and mass differentials at play are much lower than when operating a bicycle on the street, and most of the time, people obey the rules of my local trail system (that is, to stay right of center, and to call "on your left" when passing).

    Also, most dog walkers are good about stopping off the edge of the path, and holding their dog tightly.
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