In this short, speed-enhanced video from Mark Wagenbuur, (via David Hembrow's A View From the Cyclepath), the morning commute looks just a little bit frightening, though certainly it looks a lot better than crawling along with a car. To make you own comparison, first check out this video, and then the car version after the fold. As Wagenburr says about the clip, "This is what 33% bike modal share looks like in the 4th largest city in the Netherlands."
Now, we at TreeHugger have extensively highlighted the great bike cities of both the Netherlands and Denmark. The surprising thing is that at least in Amsterdam and Copenghagen, modal share is still growing, and city planners are determined to keep cycling popular.
In fact, Amsterdam's goal was by the end of this year to have a modal share of 37%, achieve a score of at least 7.5 on the Cyclists Satisfaction Sruvey, and reduce the number of bicycle thefts by 40%. That last seems to be like the most difficult to achieve, though Amsterdam's citizens help out by using seemingly impenetrable cloth-covered chain locks with heavy-duty padlocks.
In a recent interview with Ria Hilhorst, from the traffic, transport & infrastructure group of the City of Amsterdam, Hilhorst said the city has already gotten to the first goal, with 38% modal share as of the end of last year. The inner city of Amsterdam actually has closer to 57% modal share, she said, and the greater city could get to at least 40% by 2040, she added.
On the question of bike theft, however, Hilhorst had less good news. The Amsterdam police implemented a registration program with bike engraving seven years ago, but only a few hundred bicycles of the 45,000 that are stolen annually have been returned to their owners, she said.
In Copenhagen, Copenhagenize says 55% of all trips are made by bicycle, with a 37% modal share for commuting. Interestingly, while Amsterdam and Copenhagen have a healthy rivalry going, it is the Dutch city of Groningen that seems to truly be the best cycling city in the world, if only by the numbers...60% of journeys there are by bicycle.
Read more about Dutch biking at TreeHugger:
Why do the Dutch Like Bikes So Much?
Dutch Cycling: Remember the Phone, Forget the Helmet
Bakfiets: Move It, Move It
A Brain Surgeon on Bicycle Helmets
Amsterdam Edging Ahead of Copenhagen as Most Bike-Loving Euro-Capital?