Tuesday, October 22, 2013
What's It Like to Ride in the World's Number 1 Cycling City?
As I mentioned in my previous post, I spent last week in the Netherlands working on an exciting new project which you'll be hearing a lot about over the next few months. This week I'm back in the UK, and missing the incredible cycling conditions that you find just over the North Sea with our Dutch neighbours.
So imagine my pleasure to see that the newest Streetfilms is all about the city of Groningen, in the north of the Netherlands. I was there just last week too, meeting city authority officials, and riding with infrastructure guru and blog editor David Hembrow of "A View from the Cycle Path" fame. My experience was just the same as Streetfilm's, that is to say, cycling in the city was almost unbelievable such was its intensity, and it is fantastic to be able to re-live the moment through this brilliant new film.
Groningen is the world's number 1 cycling city; some 50% of all journeys there are conducted by bicycle, going up to a massive 60% in the city core. And yet, like air, the residents of Groningen don't even seem to realise how essential their cycling culture is - it's just part of their everyday experience. To give you an idea of how much 60% of all journeys by bicycle is, Hackney - "London's cycling suburb" - hovers around a comparatively paltry 10%.
Clearly there is lots still to do in London, and lots that we can learn from those who have had the most success (because you would, wouldn't you?). In the meantime, enjoy the view from Groningen's cycle paths, and let's hope this latest Streetfilms can help to inspire us to think REALLY big!