Thursday, January 23, 2014

A taste of the best. Part 1: Zwolle

Zwolle is one of the five nominees to become best Cycling City of the Netherlands in 2014. Chosen from a long-list of 19 municipalities, these five municipalities compete to take over the title of current best cycling city ʼs-Hertogenbosch, which was elected in 2011. I will make a small portrait of all five nominees and in reversed alphabetical order Zwolle is the first. A bicycle street in Zwolle where people cycling outnumber other traffic and where cars are guest. Zwolle is a historic city, with a centre that can still be recognised as a fortified city. It is the capital of the province of Overijssel with a population of almost 123,000. I asked Ilse Bloemhof, the project leader for infrastructure in Zwolle, why she thinks Zwolle should win this competition. This is her response: “Our main cycle routes got a surface of smooth asphalt. Main routes through residential areas were transformed into bicycle streets, elsewhere we see wide cycle lanes or protected cycle tracks. All these cycle routes take people cycling to their destination in a fast and safe way. We are proud of our great number of (socially safe) tunnels and bridges, especially the cycle bridge next to the new railway line “Hanzeboog”, our fast cycle route (Fietssnelweg) to Hattem and the bicycle roundabout. In an innovative way we make sure that our cycling policies get people cycling forward.”

No comments: