Amsterdam – Even more pedal-friendly than before
From April 8 this year, you can take a leisurely pedal down Amsterdam’s city canals and cycle networks without having to look over your shoulder for speeding scooters on bike lanes.
In this traditionally pedal-friendly city, almost 50% of all journeys are embarked on by bike. Yet for years, scooters or mopeds have been ridden alongside bicycles in cycle networks, posing a menace that many organisations have strove to eliminate over a seven-year campaign that has finally come to fruition.
The city council has confirmed that the close to 35,000 mopeds in Amsterdam will now be restricted to roads this spring, facing a €95 (£85) fine otherwise. This measure is expected to reduce the number of accidents in the city by 260 a year, making the city an even safer biking destination than before.
Previously, regular mopeds with yellow license plates had already been banned from bike lanes but blue-plated light mopeds still jostled amongst cyclists at an already alarming 15mph. It was further found that 87% of moped drivers rode faster than the speed limit, which would previously have intimidated amateur cyclists off the lanes. Impossible for one of the world’s most cycle-safe cities, but Amsterdam just became a great deal safer yet.
That being said, cycle path dos and don’ts mirror those on the road; they even have their own traffic signals to obey. It goes without saying that you should refrain from being a road (or path) hogger. Dawdling in the middle of lanes or drifting between lanes will only frustrate those behind you. Predictability on the bike lanes make for easier navigation on bike for yourself and fellow cyclists who likely won’t be expecting sudden changes of trajectory.
Riding through the city amongst locals and drinking in the sights and sounds of the laidback city has to be one of the best ways to truly experience life in Amsterdam, especially now that cyclists will finally have free rein on bike lanes sans scootering hazards.
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