The 1950’s newsreel from the U.S. had a clear take on the Amsterdam’s role of cycling: it became chaotic. Americans seem to portray the cycling culture as mainstream in Amsterdam so much so that they dominate the streets and American car lovers would have no right away on the streets of Amsterdam. The chaos continues to be portrayed though “swarms” of cyclers, often showing footage of dizzying crowds. I think it is clear that cycling truly was the dominant culture pertaining to getting around Amsterdam’s in the 50’s however.
It’s also clear, however, that Dutch culture ensures safety of the cyclers. The Netherlands implements stops for cyclers as they move across junctions, so that they can safely turn into a different lane; they become shielded in traffic islands, thus preserving their safety. When it comes to roundabouts, they have their own lane almost like a ring of the roundabout, where cars yield to them.
Below, I’ve reworked my favorite roundabout in town. I’m a huge fan of roundabouts, however this one could use some work to improving cyclers travel — I took a few concepts from the Netherlands approach!
The big takeaway is that this outer red ring is for cyclers. Cars entering the roundabout first yield to the red ring, cyclers, then one car at a time passes that ring to then enter the roundabout. I really liked this idea in the Netherlands, and think it works well in my town!