LEDs on Copenhagen's bicycle highway tell you how fast to go to get the green light

Mikael Colville Andersen
CC BY 2.0 Mikael Colville Andersen/ Lloyd Alter

Mikael Colville-Andersen is a regular on TreeHugger, with his Copenhagenize website and bicycle urbanism consultancy, to his famous Copenhagen Cycle Chic website that has been knocked off all over the world. I met him last year in Copenhagen; in the photo above he is pointing out the counter that shows how many cyclists are crossing this bridge every day.

Journey Around Copenhagen's Latest Bicycle Innovations! from STREETFILMS on Vimeo.

Clarence Eckerson, Jr. just got the wonderful Copenhagen tour from Mikael, and did a great film of it for Streetfilms. There have been some significant changes since our tour last August; a wonderful new bridge (the Cycle Snake) has opened to huge acclaim, providing an alternative to the bridge we took, where you have to carry your bike down a flight of stairs at one end.

Streetfilms/Video screen capture

In North America, the traffic lights are synchronized for the convenience of cars and cyclists have to start and stop all the time. At about 3:40 Cotilde Imbert explains that on the Green Wave, a cyclist going 20 Km/hr gets the green light and might never have to stop. However, most cyclists don't have spedometers, how will they know what the right speed is? Easy. Green LEDs are built into the road beside the bike lane. Hit 20 and they light up and you surf the wave.

It's all pretty amazing as the City invests big bucks in bikes. The result? a 5% increase to 42% share of trips into the city and a lot fewer cars, although Mikael noted earlier that they are building a new subway, and the construction makes it just about impossible to drive. Great stuff from Streetfilms; See my slideshow tour with Mikael here.

Tags: Bike-Friendly World | Bikes | Copenhagen | Urban Planning

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