Copenhagen - This is amazing !!!

Gerry Attrick

Lincolnshire Mountain Rescue Consultant
I was in Copenhagen last month and their cycling infrastructure is impressive. As I did not have a bike with me, I was walking a fair bit and to we uneducated eejits, it is very easy to get flattened by cyclists as we are so unaccustomed to having bikes ride on what essentially is the pavement.

Anyway, in answer to your question...............when hell freezes over!
 

CopperBrompton

Bicycle: a means of transport between cake-stops
Location
London
It's very similar to that in Amsterdam.

We just don't seem to get it in the UK, sadly - I suspect we're a decade or two away from this.
 

jonesy

Guru
I was in Copenhagen last month and their cycling infrastructure is impressive. As I did not have a bike with me, I was walking a fair bit and to we uneducated eejits, it is very easy to get flattened by cyclists as we are so unaccustomed to having bikes ride on what essentially is the pavement.

Anyway, in answer to your question...............when hell freezes over!

It is important to stress that while the Copenhagen cycle lanes look like pavements, in that they are raised above the main carriageway with a short kerb, they are separate from the pavements, which are adjacent to the cycle paths and at a level above them, with another kerb. The cycle lanes are therefore not shared with pedestrians and, from what I've seen, are both of good width; i.e. they haven't created cycle paths at the expense of pedestrian space, as happens so often in the UK. Furthermore, although the cycle lanes are raised slightly above the vehicle lanes between junctions, where they meet junctions they drop to road level and are continued through the junction with their own signal phases; so the cycle lane has continuity and you are treated like a vehicle at junctions, not as a pedestrian expected to give way or even dismount, as again happens so often the in UK. A final point to note is that their cycle lanes are for one direction only, i.e. you cycle on the same side of the road as you would use if you were driving; cyclists going in opposite directions aren't expected to share a single narrow lane on one side of the road. Oh, and they have cycle paths on all their main roads, you cycle on the same road that you'd drive or take the bus, taking a direct route, not being sent round the back streets or onto canal towpaths. As you can see from the video, the numbers of cyclists are so high it simply wouldn't be possible to accommodate them on the sort of crappy excuses for cycle paths we get here. They've made segregation work, the UK's attempts at segregation usually makes things worse.
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I've wondered how much of the Copenhagen approach could be applied in the UK. Politics aside, I got the impression that many of their streets are much wider than ours, making it easier to find space for this sort of segregated provision. I'm not sure that the split level construction, which must be expensive, is actually required on all the roads I've seen it used on, especially now they have such large numbers of cyclists which creates a true critical mass, so I suspect a less heavily engineered approach with on street cycle lanes would be just as effective, as long as the lane was of comparable width and continuity provided at junctions. Let's see what the London cycle super highways bring...
 

slugonabike

New Member
Location
Bournemouth
We had a guided cycle tour of Copenhagen when we were there last September. Really enjoyable,even for a numpty cyclist - once Id got used to the funny kick brakes! Lots of space for cyclists and shared space through precincts and around the 'sights'.
 

Herbie

Veteran
Location
Aberdeen
What an amazing film unfortuneately we are sadly light years away from this in this country. We could all move to Copenhagen though:smile:
 

Ste T.

Veteran
I think we may be nearer to this than you think. When the authorities eventually admit that we have passed peak oil and it shoots to £5 a litre, there will be a massive surge in cycling as an alternative. Get your money into Raliegh now. :biggrin:
 

CopperBrompton

Bicycle: a means of transport between cake-stops
Location
London
I think we may be nearer to this than you think. When the authorities eventually admit that we have passed peak oil
But 'peak oil' is a moving goalpost. We've had 20 years oil left for the last 20 years, as extraction techniques improve (disasters not withstanding) and increased prices make uneconomic techniques economic. It's not impossible that we'll still have 20 years' supply left 20 years from now.

(Oh and I hate that the new forum software shows every edit, as my immediate correction of typos now shows up :blush:)
 
It would be lovely if London could be like Copenhagen, but the two do not bear any comparison. Copenhagen is a tiny city, and what there is of it is has nice wide roads and so on. It could never happen in London...
 
Problem I see is with distances.
The Dutch have been historically short of space and so tended to build quite compact cities where people lives a couple of miles away from work. City dwelling seems more acceptable there.

We in UK seem to want to live out in suburbs that are quite some distance from work in London so the commute by bike is more of an issue.

However away from London and big cities the suburbs are often not too far out and so distance wise it is possible.


The key thing is perhaps to get people who actually use bikes to design the cycle paths. The cycle paths that we have are largely useless and seem to simply make progress slower for bikes. The Dutch would laugh at the cycle paths here, all they do is make the bikes have to give way for every side street you pass.

I think once we have pathetic electric cars people will see that bikes can out perform them around towns.
 

shippers

Senior Member
Location
Sunny Wakefield
Population density is probaby the issue. London has a population about 6 times that of Copenhagen which wouldn't necessarily be a problem in a city 6 times the area. (Though the fact that most of them seem to want to be in the same 3 square miles at 9am every day might be...)

London, according to the internet, so it must be true, has a population density of about 4300 people per km2, whereas Copenhagen as a whole has 641.

Happily I avoid London as much as possible, but when I am forced to go there deosn't seem to be a lot of space to be building nice, wide cycle lane on the sides of the roads.
 

jonesy

Guru
Population density is probaby the issue. London has a population about 6 times that of Copenhagen which wouldn't necessarily be a problem in a city 6 times the area. (Though the fact that most of them seem to want to be in the same 3 square miles at 9am every day might be...)

London, according to the internet, so it must be true, has a population density of about 4300 people per km2, whereas Copenhagen as a whole has 641.

Happily I avoid London as much as possible, but when I am forced to go there deosn't seem to be a lot of space to be building nice, wide cycle lane on the sides of the roads.

Actually, high population density would tend towards greater, not less, use of cycling and walking, because it means more journeys are made within shorter distances and because there is less space for cars. Hence cycle use is low in low density new towns like Milton Keynes and Bracknell, even there there are lots of cycle paths, whereas cycle use is high in Cambridge and Oxford where population density, is much higher, and travel distances shorter, even though neither Cambridge nor Oxford have much in the way of cycling specific infrastructure and the vast majority of cycling takes place on the main roads into town with the rest of the traffic.
 

Archie_tect

De Skieven Architek... aka Penfold + Horace
Location
Northumberland
Spent a week in Sicily and only saw four [racing] bikes with riders togged up in racing team gear... all focussed on climbing Etna as if they were in the TdF... not a single bike anywhere else.

Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Cambridge must be lovely places to go for a pootle!
 
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