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Utrechtís Vredenburg is the busiest cycle path in all of the Netherlands

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Utrechtís Vredenburg is the busiest cycle path in all of the Netherlands

Old 06-03-19, 09:52 AM
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Utrechtís Vredenburg is the busiest cycle path in all of the Netherlands

33,000 cyclists a day!

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Old 06-03-19, 10:11 AM
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It certainly is different that cycling in most US cities for so many reasons.
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Old 06-03-19, 10:24 AM
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Oh, YEAH? Well we have this:

Clearly Holland has no idea what they're doing in the disempowerment, servitude & misery department.

Last edited by base2; 06-03-19 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 06-03-19, 10:50 AM
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Noglider,
Thanks for sharing but it makes me a nit jealous of what I see. Wish we had a better commuting option here in Southern California. But I can dream.
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Old 06-03-19, 11:29 AM
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I ride on the most heavily used bike commuting route in the US, the Hudson River Greenway in New York City. Remind me to post a video. It's not like the Netherlands, but you can clearly see it is already a bike thoroughfare. There are several bikes per minute at a given point. The varieties of people and bikes are wide.
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Old 06-03-19, 11:45 AM
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When riding in Amsterdam as a tourist I found navigating the bike paths a challenge. The traffic is so dense that you have to plan ahead when you want to change lane. When you slow down you risk irritating someone from behind or worse. If you need to stop because you lost your way or something, you need to look for some niche where you will not risk getting run over and sometimes you miscalculate because there is some other stream of traffic there that you did not anticipate. If you are slow when lights change from red to green, you disturb traffic. Obviously locals are all well versed in this but an outsider has trouble adjusting.
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Old 06-03-19, 11:59 AM
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What is odd...is seeing so many folks riding in jackets, long pants, and even suits, etc... Try that here in Dallas - Ft Worth, TX. Just getting the bike out of the garage is enough to make one start sweating. :-)
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Old 06-03-19, 12:43 PM
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I watched it trying to find helmets. There's a helmeted baby at 1:19, and at 0:14 and 1:37 they could be helmets or they could be white hair, hard to tell.
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Old 06-03-19, 01:32 PM
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You only see helmets in the Netherlands if you go outside the cities where people ride road bikes. I've done a couple of short bike tours in the Netherlands, first without a helmet (and I felt naked), second with a helmet (and I felt conspicuous). At any rate, riding in the Netherlands was far more enjoyable than riding in Manhattan.
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Old 06-03-19, 02:05 PM
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Cool video. Thanks for posting.

Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
I watched it trying to find helmets. There's a helmeted baby at 1:19, and at 0:14 and 1:37 they could be helmets or they could be white hair, hard to tell.
Yeah, I was watching and looking for drop bars and helmets. Didn't see many of either...

Not judging or anything, just thought it was interesting. Speeds seemed fairly low, and I'm pretty sure a 15mph e-bike would a lot faster than the flow of traffic, with all that it implies...
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Old 06-03-19, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by groovestew View Post
You only see helmets in the Netherlands if you go outside the cities where people ride road bikes. I've done a couple of short bike tours in the Netherlands, first without a helmet (and I felt naked), second with a helmet (and I felt conspicuous). At any rate, riding in the Netherlands was far more enjoyable than riding in Manhattan.
I am aware, which is why I was looking for helmets. Didn't think to look for drop bars, tho. Certainly don't remember seeing any.

This makes me want to ditch my 'roadie' crosscheck and get myself a 3sp 'dutch' bike for commuting.
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Old 06-03-19, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
33,000 cyclists a day!
And it is every bit the nightmare the video shows. I havenít ridden on that exact system but I rode something similar in Amsterdam. The doglegs are a stupid idea and difficult to maneuver. Adding in motor scooters that are traveling faster than the bike traffic and that try to pass in the middle of those doglegs doesnít make the ride any better.

And everyone on a bike is doing their own thing without following many rules of the road. Look at the number of people riding side by side in video. Car traffic may be bad but at least most people follow a set of agreed upon and written rules with at least minimal enforcement.
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Old 06-04-19, 06:17 AM
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My town just installed a Pedestrian and Bike counter this weekend on the Monon trail. When I went by this morning at 6 am it showed 7 riders today but YTD was up over 7,000. I think it was just put in on Saturday so not bad for 3 full days. A lot more recreational users during the day and evenings and I don't ride by it on my way home. I usually avoid that section on my way home due to the congestion. I guess if you do it everyday you get used to the flow just like driving in a city. Just at first would be a little unnerving to ride like they do in all that crowd.
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Old 06-04-19, 12:23 PM
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Makes me appreciate that I donít have quite so many bikes on my commute route. Of course, I ride on mixed use trails that arenít very wide and probably encounter 100 oncoming bikes at fairly high speed every day during high season, which is really unpleasant. And donít get me started on the damn scooters strewn about. Or the damn dog walkers. Or the side by side peds who are apparently oblivious to anything going on around them. Or the people who canít ride faster than 10 mph. Or the joggers with earplugs so they donít hear anything, including my bell. Canít wait for winter.

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Old 06-05-19, 12:45 AM
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Ah, reminds me of the good old days when I lived in Copenhagen!

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Old 06-05-19, 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Makes me appreciate that I don’t have quite so many bikes on my commute route. Of course, I ride on mixed use trails that aren’t very wide and probably encounter 100 oncoming bikes at fairly high speed every day during high season, which is really unpleasant. And don’t get me started on the damn scooters strewn about. Or the damn dog walkers. Or the side by side peds who are apparently oblivious to anything going on around them. Or the people who can’t ride faster than 10 mph. Or the joggers with earplugs so they don’t hear anything, including my bell. Can’t wait for winter.
You're beginning to sound like an embittered old man.

You should enjoy cycling or else why do it?!?!?

And it is every bit the nightmare the video shows. I haven’t ridden on that exact system but I rode something similar in Amsterdam. The doglegs are a stupid idea and difficult to maneuver. Adding in motor scooters that are traveling faster than the bike traffic and that try to pass in the middle of those doglegs doesn’t make the ride any better.

And everyone on a bike is doing their own thing without following many rules of the road. Look at the number of people riding side by side in video. Car traffic may be bad but at least most people follow a set of agreed upon and written rules with at least minimal enforcement.
Same for you.

If you want to hermit, a major European city isn't the way.

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Old 06-05-19, 01:05 AM
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Also, most busy cycle lanes have a counter. Here is a mid-winter commute and the text on the sign is self-explanatiory as it's close to English.


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Old 06-05-19, 01:20 AM
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Originally Posted by base2 View Post
Oh, YEAH? Well we have this: The bestest link in the world

Clearly Holland has no idea what they're doing in the disempowerment, servitude & misery department.


well-played

I find cycling in Europe cities quite easy and friendly. It also allows one to live car-free or almost car free, which is a huge advantage.

I'd rather shoot myself/strave rather than commute by car.
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Old 06-05-19, 01:35 AM
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Is there really no proper subway for Seattle with 3-5M people?
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Old 06-05-19, 02:47 AM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I ride on the most heavily used bike commuting route in the US, the Hudson River Greenway in New York City. Remind me to post a video. It's not like the Netherlands, but you can clearly see it is already a bike thoroughfare. There are several bikes per minute at a given point. The varieties of people and bikes are wide.
I have posted:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
…Even though I’m a Michigan native, I have only visited Chicago very briefly as an adult, and only once for an extended visit. I stayed in Lincoln Park and rented a bike and did a few early morning rides through the neighborhood.

It was a pleasant surprise when I came upon Wrigley Field (that’s the old park of the Cubs, right?) I happen to live near the similar historic Fenway Park in Boston.

I also rode the Lakeshore Bike Path, and I was astounded at how wide and busy it was. Boston’s MUPs, like the City itself are smaller and “quaint.”
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Old 06-05-19, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
Is there really no proper subway for Seattle with 3-5M people?
The area is very geographically constricted. For a variety of reasons our development is largly restricted to surface level & North/South in orientation.

For example: All of the downtown core used to be tidal flats. The city literally built retaining walls around every city block and used hoses & pumps to wash a hill down to fill in streets. To this day the enterances to most of the older buildings is on what used to be the 2nd, 3rd, & 4th floors. The project was called the Denny Regrade.

All new buildings must be built on pilings down to bedrock. The effect is whatever subterranian space isn't rotting organic matter of tide flats is saturated with ocean water & obstructed by skyscraper pilings. For obvious reasons bedrock is too hard, too deep, too expensive to build a subway.

Why not just widen the interstate? Good thing you asked. The highway skirts the West side of Queen Anne Hill. When they built the freeway landslides regularly shut it down from water saturation. So the city built retaining walls to keep the hill contained. Those walls extend some 150 feet (50 meters) from base to top (not including the below ground portion. The size & scale necessary to hold back saturated soil make any further efforts cost prohibitive & the medium density apartment owners at the top of the walls would all need to get bought out at fair market value. Costing additional billions & exacerbating an already significant housing shortage. A study on the matter came up with $7-$8 toll each way for all 100,000 cars daily to pay for an extra lane in each direction but still didn't address the cost of the Washington State Convention Center which is literally built over the freeway confining it to 4 lanes.

We have 2 of the largest floating bridges in the world just to access from the East side.

Our State Route 99 tunnel under downtown is the largest diameter car tunnel in the world and for the reasons listed above completly bypasses down town with no downtown exits like the elevated freeway it replaced. It was only feasable when it's construction was paired with replacement of the aging 100 year-old sea-wall.

The elevated freeway it replaced was visibly sagging in places if you knew where to look. The danger of collapse was quite real & not helped be consistant seismic activity we have. (I used to drive it daily & they closed it often for inspections & to install additional support bracing) Thankfully, they are part way through demolition.

Rail is a tough-go due landrights issues & cost. But we are making progress. Going east/west the cost to regrade terrain or tunnel is generally prohibitive.

We do have Link which is light rail being built & expanded but it predominantly follows the highway system for it's existing right of way &/or is elevated to avoid arterial crossings that would only result in further gridlock. "The Eastside" (meaning Bellevue) is being connected to Seattle via an existing tunnel under the Mt Baker neighborhood and repurposing High Occupancy Vehicle lanes of Interstate 90 under the Mercer Island lid. Which is itself a cut & cover engineering marvel to preserve trillions of dollars of real estate in the regions most affluent area.

As I write this & the engineering team that devised how to build tracks across the existing floating bridge received huge international recognition. Beacon hill station is some hundreds of feet underground & serviced by elevator. The stops a mile or 2 on either side are surface level. The light rail system will reach my house in 2024. We did ride a section of it to the airport last year. It was nice & I can't wait because with it, I'll finally be able to park my car for good.

We also have Sounder Rail that connects Everett to Tacoma but it uses rented slacktime in Burlington Northerns freight tracks along the shoreline. So there is really only 4 runs each way per day. Meaning 2 for morning commute, 2 for evening commute. In the winter, it's often shutdown to landslides because freight rail & passenger rail have different standards for track placement/construction. Passenger rail is required to wait 24 hours after a landslide to resume service, freight rail is not. Even so if I worked where it went, getting to the station during the times it runs means a several mile drive for the intended ridership (me) In my case it's 5 miles across town (West) to the station, & I only live 15 miles from downtown (to the South), the only place it goes, (Everett, Edmonds, King Street station for the Northern run)

Bus service to Edmonds station stops at my front door is a 45 minute trip that goes to Aurora Village Park & Ride in King County with dozens of Express busses that actually go to places elsewhere than the downtown core. Sounder really only makes sense for Everett/Tacoma residents who work office hour schedules in Seattle or to avoid parking/traffic for ball games.

Bus service doesn't work when the streets are gridlocked. But we do have Bus Rapid Transit. (Which is branded Swift.) They have transponders to prioritize the traffic signals for free flow. We have 2 lines. A "blue line" & a "green line" The blue runs every 10 minutes from basically 4am to 11pm along the State Route 99 from Everett to Aurora Village for connections elsewhere.

The Green is similar but runs from Bothell to the areas largest employer. This actually makes sense, but you have to bike/bus to the lines And the nearest place they intersect is about 3 miles from my work & require a transfer. My 11 mile commute to work direct via bicycle if made multi-modal still yields a 6 mile bicycle trip. The Rapid transit option doesn't even save 50% in terms of mileage in my case.

The direct bus option gets me to work a minimum of an hour late and only does 3 runs in the morning, and in the afternoon is a 2 hour trip on 2 different bus systems with 2 transfers. I utilized this option during the Winter snow.

For the grid-lock issue, currently there is a bill being considered to allow camera ticketing of those that "block the box" or violate the bus lane. Many people will use the bus lanes as general travel lanes, then sneak in under red/yellow and sit in the intersection blocking cross traffic so others (and busses) can't move. This behaviour circumvents the gains made by the AI controlled traffic management system.

Not helping the grid-lock issue is our "grid" system of streets isn't really grid at all. Streams, ravines, lakes really limit where a road can go. Seattle has a very rich history of streets that stop, become staircases for a block or so, then continue as a street again.

It's not uncommon to literally have an underground 1 car garage that opens at street level & your property being contained by a 6 foot retaining wall & your front door being serviced by stairs 8 or 10 feet above street level.

We truly are at car saturation. People literally have cars parked in their front yards in the suburbs. In the more central areas the city is having a devil of a time with people posting fake "no parking" signs, construction cones, & barricades in front of their houses so they can illegally secure on-street parking for themselves. Most of our "2 lane" streets are only 1 lane of alternating traffic with cars parked on both sides.

And yet people keep coming because as bad as things are, we have a balanced budget, cheap resources, deep ports, and policies that make it so business can easily make longterm plans.

TLDR: Bicycles are the fastest way around & we are playing a lot catch-up with unanticipated growth, exacerbated by geographic restrictions. The reasons/policies behind our meteoric growth are another topic probably better suited for the P&R sub.
Aaron

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Old 06-05-19, 09:00 AM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by base2 View Post
The area is very geographically constricted. For a variety of reasons our development is largly restricted to surface level & North/South in orientation.

For example: All of the downtown core used to be tidal flats. The city literally built retaining walls around every city block and used hoses & pumps to wash a hill down to fill in streets. To this day the enterances to most of the older buildings is on what used to be the 2nd, 3rd, & 4th floors. The project was called the Denny Regrade.

All new buildings must be built on pilings down to bedrock. The effect is whatever subterranian space isn't rotting organic matter of tide flats is saturated with ocean water & obstructed by skyscraper pilings. For obvious reasons bedrock is too hard, too deep, too expensive to build a subway.

Why not just widen the interstate? Good thing you asked. The highway skirts the West side of Queen Anne Hill. When they built the freeway landslides regularly shut it down from water saturation. So the city built retaining walls to keep the hill contained. Those walls extend some 150 feet (50 meters) from base to top. The size & scale necessary to hold back saturated soil make any further efforts cost prohibitive & the medium density apartment owners at the top of the walls would all need to get bought out at fair market value. Costing billions & exacerbating an already significant housing shortage. A study on the matter came up with $7-$8 toll each way for all 100,000 cars daily to pay for an extra lane in each direction but still didn't address the cost of the Washington State Convention Center which is literally built over the freeway confining it to 4 lanes.

We have 2 of the largest floating bridges in the world just to access from the East side.

Our State Route 99 tunnel under downtown is the largest car tunnel in the world and for the reasons listed above completly bypasses down town with no downtown exits like the elevated freeway it replaced. It was only feasable when it's construction was paired with replacement of the aging 100 year-old sea-wall.

The elevated freeway it replaced was visibly sagging in places if you knew where to look. The danger of collapse was quite real & not helped be consistant seismic activity we have. (I used to drive it daily & they closed it often for inspections & to install additional support bracing)

Rail is a tough-go due landrights issues & cost. Going east/west the cost to regrade terrain or tunnel is generally prohibitive. We do have Link which is light rail being built & expanded but it predominantly follows the highway system for it's existing right of way &/or is elevated to avoid arterial crossings that would only result in further gridlock. The Eastside is being connected as I write this & the engineering team that devised how to build tracks across the existing floating bridge received huge international recognition. Beacon hill station is some hundreds of feet underground. It will be reach my house in 2024. We did ride a section of it to the airport last year. It was nice & I can't wait because with it, I'll finally be able to park my car for good.

We have Sounder Rail that connects Everett to Tacoma but it uses rented slacktime in Burlington Northerns freight tracks along the waterfront. So there is really only 4 runs each way per day. Meaning 2 for morning commute, 2 for evening commute. In the winter, it's often shutdown to landslides because freight rail & passenger rail have different standards for track placement/construction. Passenger rail is required to wait 24 hours after a landslide to resume service, freight rail is not. Even so if I worked where it went, getting to the station during the times it runs means a several mile drive for the intended ridership (me) In my case it's 5 miles across town (West) to the station, & I only live 15 miles from downtown, the only place it goes, (Everett, Edmonds, King Street station for the Northern run)

Bus service to Edmonds station stops at my front door is a 45 minute trip that goes to Aurora Village Park & Ride in King County with dozens of Express busses that actually go to places elsewhere than the downtown core. Sounder really only makes sense for Everett/Tacoma residents who work office hour schedules or to avoid parking/traffic for ball games.

Bus service doesn't work when the streets are gridlocked. But we do have Bus Rapid Transit. (Which is branded Swift.) They have transponders to prioritize the traffic signals for free flow. We have 2 lines. A "blue line" & a "green line" The blue runs every 10 minutes from basically 4am to 11pm along the State Route 99 from Everett to Aurora Village for connections elsewhere.

The Green is similar but runs from Bothell to the areas largest employer. This actually makes sense, but you have to bike/bus to the lines And the nearest place they intersect is about 3 miles from my work & require a transfer. My 11 mile commute to work direct via bicycle if made multi-modal still yields a 6 mile bicycle trip. The Rapid transit option doesn't even save 50% in terms of mileage in my case.

The direct bus option gets me to work a minimum of an hour late and only does 3 runs in the morning, and in the afternoon is a 2 hour trip on 2 different bus systems with 2 transfers. I utilized this option during the Winter snow.

For the grid-lock issue, currently there is a bill being considered to allow camera ticketing of those that "block the box" or violate the bus lane. Many people will use the bus lanes as general travel lanes, then sneak in under red/yellow and sit in the intersection blocking cross traffic so others (and busses) can't move. This behaviour circumvents the gains made by the AI controlled traffic management system.

Not helping the grid-lock issue is our "grid" system of streets isn't really grid at all. Streams, ravines, lakes really limit where a road can go. Seattle has a very rich history of streets that stop, become staircases for a block or so, then continue as a street again.

It's not uncommon to literally have an underground 1 car garage that opens at street level & your property being contained by a 6 foot retaining wall & your front door being serviced by stairs 8 or 10 feet above street level.

We truly are at car saturation. People literally have cars parked in their front yards in the suburbs. In the more central areas the city is having a devil of a time with people posting fake "no parking" signs, construction cones, & barricades in front of their houses so they can illegally secure on-street parking for themselves. Most of our "2 lane" streets are only 1 lane of alternating traffic with cars parked on both sides.

And yet people keep coming because as bad as things are, we have a balanced budget, cheap resources, deep ports, and policies that make it so business can easily make longterm plans.

TLDR: Bicycles are the fastest way around & we are playing a lot catch-up with unanticipated growth, exacerbated by geographic restrictions. The reasons/policies behind our meteoric growth are another topic probably better suited for the P&R sub.
Aaron
Cool. Just wanted to chime in that subway was excellent in Stockholm which is 2.5M people living on 13 islands with a real space crunch. I guess that people have to want to use it and pay for it. It wasn't cheap but it was excellent! So, it can be done!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockholm_metro
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Old 06-05-19, 09:14 AM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
You're beginning to sound like an embittered old man.

You should enjoy cycling or else why do it?!?!?



Same for you.

If you want to hermit, a major European city isn't the way.
Cute. Strip out my name in a quote so that you can say something insulting and entirely incorrect and hope that I won’t respond.

I’m not being an “embittered old man” nor do I want to be a “hermit”. I’m being a realist. I can ride in that kind of crowd but I don’t find it enjoyable nor “cycling heaven” any more than I find driving on a rush hour highway to be “driving heaven”. Yes, there are a lot of people riding bikes in European countries. But it isn’t the “heaven” that people think it is.
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Old 06-05-19, 09:19 AM
  #24  
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Seattle sounds like a mess. Beautiful city to visit, but it sounds like there are issues living there us visitors just do not see.

I'll stick with my suburban commute where I see another bicycle commuter once a week or so.

I'd love to ride in the Netherlands or Denmark, but imo those crowds may take some of the allure of bike commuting away.
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Old 06-05-19, 10:13 AM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
You should enjoy cycling or else why do it?!?!?
Because it's cheaper and healthier than driving, and doesn't take too much time if you live close enough to work.
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