Bicycle Reflection

One key principle of Dutch cycling infrastructure is cyclist safety. Both junctions and roundabouts in the Netherlands are built with safety in mind. Dutch junctions avoid collision between car and bicycle by carving out paths separate from the main junction for cyclists to bike through, avoiding the chaos of the intersection. These paths, typically shielded at intersections by traffic islands, give cyclists protection from speeding cars while allowing them to take right turns that avoid the intersection entirely, reducing the likelihood of collision. Dutch roundabouts also maintain the safety of cyclists by regulating car behaviors. The tight radius of roundabout entrances and the circles themselves force cars to drive slowly and carefully. A Dutch invention called the turbo-roundabout has achieved further regulation by forcing cars to choose their lane before entering the roundabout and preventing them from changing lanes through raised medians. This development prevents cars from cutting each other off and makes car behaviors more predictable for the benefit of cyclists and other drivers.

At the northernmost section of High Street in Burlington City, there is a roundabout that turns cars around and sends them back down the street. Several surrounding, one-way streets feed into this roundabout as a way of redirecting traffic. North of the roundabout is a stretch of grass and walkways overlooking the Delaware River; the construction zone to the bottom-right is today an apartment complex. In order to make this roundabout more bike-friendly, I would install bike lanes on either side of the outer streets, and push the sidewalk in the bottom-left in to make room for a bike lane. These bike lanes could transition into the walkways leading to the waterfront; like the cars, cyclists would have to move more slowly and carefully during this turn. By creating bike lanes on every side of this road, the new infrastructure would allow cyclists maneuverability around the city as well as access to the various shops and restaurants along High Street.

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One thought on “Bicycle Reflection

  1. You make great points about the importance of bicycle safety, a factor that could easily be overlooked by the misguided belief that bikes lanes guarantee bikers safe riding. Your mention of the turbo roundabout also furthers the idea of how important Bikes are in the Netherlands and how the industry around bikes is both innovative and expanding. Similar to you I had the idea to transition bikeways and walk ways to optimize the space available, and your added idea of having it lead to the waterfront is sure to lead to some great scenic bike routes.

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