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All photos in & around Assen

Showing items 1 to 100 from total of 494 items. Ordered by caption descending.

Photo # Photo Caption Icon Categorisation
14244Photo #14244Young cycle racers on Assen's cycle racing track.

Cycle racing is very popular in the Netherlands and a lot of people compete. Assen, like most towns, has a cycle racing circuit. It also has various road races for which roads are closed during the year.

The annual Jeugdtour (Youth Tour) is the biggest Youth cycling event in Europe. A week long stage race, and the closest thing to the Tour de France for young riders. www.jeugdtourassen.nl/

The video shows a cyclist practising taking a water bottle from someone at the side of the road. This is an essential skill for a road racer, and more difficult than it might immediately appear.

In 2009 Assen will be the start point for the Vuelta (Spanish "Tour de France").
Bicycle:
Misc
bicycles
11635Photo #11635You see these posts around occasionally. It reads (English first, then Dutch):

This is a climate wood. These trees are at this moment busy tieing up CO2. That is desperately needed, for CO2 discharge is an important cause of climate change.

The 12 provincies and landscape organisations work here on the solution to the climate problem.

And what are you doing ?

Look at www.klimaatbosje.nl

Dit is een klimaatbosje. Deze bomen zijn op dit moment bezig CO2 te binden. Dat is hard nodig, want CO2-uitstoot is een belangrijke oorzaak van klimaatverandering.

De 12 provinciale Landschappen en landschapsbeheer Nederland werken hier aan de oplossing van het klimaatprobleem.

En wat doet U ?

Kijk op www.klimaatbosje.nl
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
12375Photo #12375Yet another shop with branded cycle parking outside.

Retailers here in Assen seem to like cyclists.

The car parking shown on Google's aerial photography doesn't exist any more.
Cycle parking:
Good practice
cycleparking
11780Photo #11780Yet another example of a side road giving way to a cycle path. This is the other side of the road from the sequence shown from #11773.

Note how the 2.5 m wide concrete surface passes through the road. Cyclists definitely have priority here.

It's also worth a look at the Google Maps images which show how this road junction used to be. The road always gave way to the cycle path, but the road entrance used to be much wider and with more sweeping "high speed" corners than it has now.

By British standards, the previous arrangement would have been truly exceptional, but the Dutch have moved past that to a safer arrangement, despite the inconvenience to drivers.

Note that the crossing is set back from the main road by more than a car length in order that cars entering or leaving the main road have somewhere to stop without blocking the route of cyclists. Also note that this is achieved with very large radii corners for cyclists to negotiate, while drivers have to negotiate much tighter radii in order to turn in or out of the road.

To see the way that this path continues right into the city, see the video at #12598
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
20221Photo #20221Yesterday's early snowfall turned to rain and you can see that this has washed away a lot of the remaining snow and ice. It's 2 C today, which is warmer than it's been for a month.

This cycle path along the canal was kept clear by snow ploughs through the colder period, but only to the width of the plough itself. You can see the roughly 2.5 metre width of the snow plough on this 4 metre cycle path.

The canal is still frozen solid, and will be for some time to come.

Compare with #20210 which was taken in the same spot a few days previously.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12307Photo #12307Xtracycle Free-Radical taking yet another load of baskets to the post office...

You can read a review of the bike after 5 year's use (including a video) here: hembrow.eu/personal/xtracycle.html
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
11873Photo #11873Wonderful canal path. Other views are at #11713 and #11784, but this one provides video.

The path has the standard width of four metres.

Upgraded in 2011. See #33320
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12591Photo #12591With the addition of a front rack and a basket made to fit, my Xtracycle can now really move big loads !

For an Xtracycle review, and even a video of the basket being made if you look around a bit, go here:

hembrow.eu/personal/xtracycle.html
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
12355Photo #12355Wide cycle path next to the road that the car came from. This path has priority over all the side-roads, so the car driver waited for us, as he should.

It's -5 C in Assen today, hence the warm clothing ! Note that the cycle path has been gritted and is clear of ice.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
20422Photo #20422While the snow has mostly gone, it was -4 C today and the canals were still completely frozen. These children went skating after school, travelling by bike, of course.Other:
Misc
general
12060Photo #12060While cycling rates in Assen are already incredibly high by British standards, the fight to increase the rate of cycling still goes on. This was in today's (1st November 2007) local paper.

Since this time, the cycling rate in Assen has grown to over 41% of all journeys. The new infrastructure is a good part of the reason why such growth has been possible.
Other:
Good practice
general
32236Photo #32236While bidirectional cyclepaths in this part are normally 4 m wide, they can be much wider at junctions.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
11782Photo #11782When there isn't a cycle path, speed limits on the roads are low. The speed limit on this rural road is 50 km/h, or around 30 mph.General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
11627Photo #11627When service vehicles (this is is for an electricity and gas supply company) need to access areas which are only accessible by bike and footpath they can do so without greatly inconveniencing cyclists too much because the paths were built with sensible proportions in the first place.

Also, because this is just a bike path and not a road, no amount of irresponsible parking can result in cyclists having to ride out into fast flowing traffic.

Photo taken in Assen, Netherlands.

The cycle path is four metres wide, the pavement 2.5 metres.
Obstruction:
Good practice
obstructions
11870Photo #11870What use is a set of photos of the Netherlands unless at least one windmill is included ?Destination:
Misc
destinations
27252Photo #27252We've had a light dusting of snow here in Assen. It's -2 C. All cyclepaths have been swept and gritted and children continue to cycle to school as usual.Cycleway:
Misc
cycleways
15786Photo #15786We're not finished yet. The sign is telling about the improvements to a cycle path in this industrial estate. It has been widened to 4 metres in order that it is up to current standards.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
11778Photo #11778We started in Assen and now we're in the middle of Vries - almost half way to Groningen. To get here we have followed a fantastic smooth and wide cycle path to which side roads give way, and now that we're in Vries, for the first time in many kilometres we're being asked to give way to cars.

The bike path continues to Groningen, but this is the last photo of our sequence.

The first photo was #11773. Start back there and to see all the photos and videos of this sequence. Or if you want to see a few views of the return path on the other side of the road, go to #11779 and #11780.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34272Photo #34272View West from mound next to canal.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34270Photo #34270View South from mound next to canal.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34271Photo #34271View SE from mound next to canal.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12105Photo #12105View of the construction of a new lifting bridge on the canal at Groene Dijk in Assen.

The existing bike path has been moved towards the camera and a new crossing will be installed to cross the road (in one go and with no obstacles).

The bike path is about the same width as a single lane of the road. No bike path follows the line of the road to the left of the photo as there are only relatively major (i.e. 70 km/h speed limit) roads in that direction. There is a perfectly sensible way to travel in that direction at the next left turn, by the existing bridge (just visible at the left of the photo) which is going to be left for cycles and local cars only.

The surface quality of this path is already very good even though it has yet to receive its top layer.

A different view is shown in #12106

To see the path in use after completion, see #12301
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12065Photo #12065View of the bike path which takes workers to the large NAM (Nederlandse Aardolie Maatschappij - Dutch Oil Company) headquarters in Assen. NAM is a good part of Shell.

Also see #12064
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34273Photo #34273View NNE from mound next to canal.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13600Photo #13600Very old and very cheap cycle facility on a road used by few cyclists where a cycle lane becomes a cycle-path momentarily and goes behind a bus-stop.

This prevents cyclists using the cycle lane from being cut up by buses which overtake and pull-in.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13254Photo #13254Veilig Verkeer Nederland distribute a set of "happy families" cards to children who pass the traffic safety examination.

These are all quite witty. e.g. The top left in the "Weather or no weather" group says "With the wind on your back, you go too quickly". The bottom right in the "Where ? There !" group says "Short through the corner is long not clever" (it makes more sense in Dutch).

Note the complete lack of helmets. Helmet promotion isn't considered to be a good idea in this country. What is needed is to get the population cycling more, not to get a declining population of cyclists wearing odder and odder clothes until they give up out of embarrassment...
Other:
Good practice
general
11805Photo #11805Update April 2008: A meeting with city officials brought the information that this is only a secondary path in this direction. The primary bike route is to be 5 metres wide and parallel with this one on the other side of the canal.

The "bicycle road" on the other side of the canal while under construction is shown in #13318.

This is a new three metre wide cycle path on Vaart ZZ with a pedestrian pavement of around 2.5 metres. The road and bike path are both being improved here. In the case of the cycle path, an existing segregated path is being replaced with a better one, and the road junctions are being made more favourable to cyclists. There will be a grass verge between the bike path and road.

To make room for all this, the canal has been shifted sideways in a northerly direction. On the north side of the canal, the road is being reduced to not much more than a cycle path.

Note how they have finished the pavement and cycle path first. The road is coming later on the rough ground to the right of my bicycle.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12491Photo #12491Unusually for the Netherlands, an urban landscape which is dominated by cars. There is comparatively little cycle parking, presumably because there is little need for it.

This is Oosterwolde in Friesland and an example of the "Shared Space" ideas of Hans Monderman.

Watch the video to see traffic on an otherwise quiet Sunday afternoon. One car overtook me a little too close, the other overtook someone cycling on the other side of the road much too close. Both were travelling in excess of the speed limit.

This scheme may have worked initially due to novelty, but it seems to be heading for car dominance in the centre of this town. Luckily this has only been done on a few streets.

See also #12492 for another photo of Oosterwolde or #12344 for a more usual Dutch town centre - with a lot of bikes in it.
Cycleway:
Problem
cycleways
34218Photo #34218Underpass 'crossing' 70pkh 'no cycling' roadCycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34219Photo #34219Underpass 'crossing' 70pkh 'no cycling' roadCycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34216Photo #34216Underpass 'crossing' 70kph 'no cycling' roadCycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
34217Photo #34217Underpass 'crossing' 70kph 'no cycling' roadCycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13159Photo #13159Tyre tracks in light snow on a popular cycle path.Cycleway:
Misc
cycleways
11529Photo #11529Typical Dutch bike path between villages.

In a location like this where traffic is lighter, you will find that a bidirectional path on just one side of the road is quite common. There is, of course, attention paid wherever someone might have to access something on the other side of the road. You can't see it in the photo but In this case, the other side of the road is actually a canal.
Other:
Good practice
general
11871Photo #11871Typical bike path alongside a fairly busy rural roadCycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
14514Photo #14514Two of the Huneliggers ( www.huneliggers.nl/ ). A group of recumbent riders who get together on Sunday mornings.Bicycle:
Misc
bicycles
12342Photo #12342Two "Except Cyclists" signs in one photo.

I've yet to find a one-way street here which doesn't except cyclists.

See also #12343 which shows three more within a few metres of this location.
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
15594Photo #15594Tulip bike racks. These are a very popular style of bike rack which properly support the front wheel of the bicycle, making loading easy, while also being compact and providing for additional locking of the frame.Cycle parking:
Good practice
cycleparking
14257Photo #14257Translation "Take care! Pedestrians on the cyclepath"

A very unusual sign showing that this cycle path is expected to be used by pedestrians as well. Shared use is NEVER normally used in the Netherlands. However, in this case this is next to a football ground where it is expected there will be a lot of pedestrians on match days and there isn't space to put in good walking paths next to the 3 metre wide cycle path.
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
11579Photo #11579Traffic safety is taken very seriously at the school. It's already well in advance of that at a typical British school. No parking of cars on the pavement and a very high rate of cycling and walking. However, this is clearly something which they feel needs to be re-enforced:

Junior version of the highway code "Do you know the traffic rules?"

Handed out to all Dutch primary school children.
Other:
Good practice
general
11577Photo #11577Traffic safety is taken very seriously at the school. It's already well in advance of that at a typical British school. No parking of cars on the pavement and a very high rate of cycling and walking. However, this is clearly something which they feel needs to be re-enforced:

Dutch handout given to school children for their parents.

10 Golden Rules for safe school surroundings

1. The route to school is safe
2. The street in front of school is safe
3. There is a safe crossing place
4. ... and a safe school exit
5. Children have an unimpeded view
6. For parents there is ample waiting space
7. There are bicycle racks for parents
8. ... and for the children good cycle parking with free places
9. The school bus takes the best parking space
10. The school has a traffic-parent and a traffic committee.

The leaflet goes on to explain each point in more detail.

More information at www.veiligverkeernederland.nl
Other:
Good practice
general
11578Photo #11578Traffic safety is taken very seriously at the school. It's already well in advance of that at a typical British school. No parking of cars on the pavement and a very high rate of cycling and walking. However, this is clearly something which they feel needs to be re-enforced:

Another leaflet from school

"Safe crossings"

Together we stand strong


A leaflet about Veilig Verkee Nederlands (Safe Traffic Netherlands) www.veiligverkeernederland.nl

This calls for safer areas around schools.
Other:
Good practice
general
15338Photo #15338Traffic Jam on bicycle road due to too many cyclists using this 5 metre wide facility at the same time. How can there be enough to fill such a space ? Sinterklaas is arriving in the city:

hembrow.blogspot.com/2008/11/sinterklaasintocht.html
Cycleway:
Misc
cycleways
13478Photo #13478Trader with remaining unsold bikes leaving the vrijmarkt at the end of Koninginnedag.Bicycle:
Misc
bicycles
12119Photo #12119Today the children's bikes were inspected at school. A police officer comes to the school premises to test all the kid's bikes once per year. It's quite a job as virtually all kids bring their bikes to school.

The result: A sticker saying "Deze Fiets is OK" ("This bike is OK") on the rear mudguard alongside the longer standing Cambridge Cycling Campaign sticker.
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
19971Photo #19971To me the cycle path already looked adequately empty of leaves. In the Netherlands cycle paths always do. All the time. However, here comes the leaf sweeper again just to make sure.

3 metre wide secondary cycle path behind a residential suburb in Assen.

There's another example here: hembrow.blogspot.com/2009/11/autumn-leaves.html
Roadworks:
Good practice
roadworks
13383Photo #13383Three generations of a family cycling together. A very common sight on Dutch cycle paths.Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
11717Photo #11717This very narrow road gives way to two different cycle paths within 50 metres of one another.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12118Photo #12118This used to be one of the main roads to the centre of the city, but now it's a "bicycle road" and used by cars only for access. Motorists have been given a different (less direct) route.

While these look like 1.5 m bike lanes each side of a 2.1 m car lane, they are no such thing. The whole road is in effect a cycle path, but one on which residents in the half a dozen houses on this road may drive their cars.

The road is a dead end to cars at both ends, but a through route for cyclists. It provides the most direct route to the middle of the city from a new housing estate.

The video shows the bike path which leads to the road.

Mud on the road is due to the considerable number of construction traffic currently using this road.

Another view of this road is shown in #11872
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12136Photo #12136This sort of minor road in a village will have a 30 km/h speed limit in the Netherlands.

In this case, 1.5 km of road past just a few houses has this speed limit. The other end of the zone is shown in #12268
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
13385Photo #13385This sign stands by the main entrance of the Nederlandse Aardolie Maatschappij (Dutch Oil Company - a big chunk of Shell) building in Assen.

The sign shows the injury rate of the business.

The top number is the number of days which have passed since the last injury in the company which caused someone to have to stay off work. i.e. 7 days.

The second number is the number of accidents in the company this year which have caused someone to be off work. i.e. 12 such accidents.

Oil exploration is quite a risky business. This was taken in November, so represents most of a year's worth of accidents.

The third number is just the number of free spaces in the carpark. It's perhaps worth noting that there are also excellent cycle paths to this site.

I assume this sign exists to try to encourage a safety culture. I think it might make me think twice about bothering if it was the first thing I saw on arriving for an interview...
General sign/notice:
Infrastructure
signs
12494Photo #12494This road turns into a cycle path, goes over a bridge which crosses a cycle underpass and then crosses a road.

This allows cyclists to take a much more direct route than drives travelling in the same direction.

Play the video to see how this all works.

It may look as if I go through a red light. I don't. The red is for pedestrians, and no pedestrian has pressed a button. The bike light has a sensor and turns green for myself and the bike going the other way.

The glass barrier at the left hand side of the picture has been erected to reduce noise from the 70 km/h speed limit road behind it. The residential roads joined by the bike path have a 30 km/h speed limit.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12855Photo #12855This road is closed to motorized vehicles and so available nearly all the time for cycling. Why only "nearly" ? It's a military practice area, so come in at the wrong time and you might find yourself facing a tank...

Still, it's wonderfully smooth and lovely to ride along so provides a pleasant alternative to the also wonderfully smooth cycle path paralleling it a bit further west.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
11683Photo #11683This photo has been superseded by the photo and video at #12360.

Bikes inside a covered mall shopping area in Assen parked outside the Albert Heijn supermarket.

No-one seems to mind bikes being ridden through here. They also don't worry too much about dogs being taken through here. I've even seen a dog being towed through in a bike trailer. No-one bats an eyelid. How different from the UK !
Cycle parking:
Good practice
cycleparking
12833Photo #12833This once through road at the exit of a small village is no longer a through road for drivers. However, cyclists have been provided with a marvellous way out.

An excellent cycling signpost at the end of the tunnel gives many options for cyclists.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
11785Photo #11785This minor road is about to turn into a dirt track passable only by tractors... but not for cyclists, who continue to have a nice smooth tarmac surface to ride on. Watch the video to see how this work.

One of the great advantages of a primarily segregated network is that it's so easy to make conditions for cyclists better than conditions for motorists.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
12079Photo #12079This looks like a road with just narrow cycle lanes. However, it's actually a road used by hardly any cars at all, as there's nowhere to get to by car and no way of using it as a through road. The car in the photo will have to do a right or left turn soon and head out of the centre rather than towards it. The speed limit is of course 30 km/h.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13878Photo #13878This is a secure entrance to the military barracks in Assen, Netherlands. The turnstile is for a person to pass into or out of the area, the gate on the right is for their accompanying bicycle.

It is very rare in the Netherlands to find things that don't cater for cyclists.
Destination:
Good practice
destinations
11567Photo #11567This cycle path is separated by grade from the road. It is around 2.5 m wide + a different colour section which keeps it apart laterally. At the junction it becomes more widely spaced from the road.Other:
Good practice
general
13358Photo #13358This cycle path is being resurfaced so one lane of the road has been taken from drivers as a temporary cycle path while works continue.

Note that there is also a cycle path on the opposite side of the road, but cyclists are not told to cross and use that as it would be inconvenient.

It is very rare that cyclists are inconvenienced by roadworks in this country.

Groningen in the Netherlands.
Obstruction:
Good practice
obstructions
20127Photo #20127This cycle path in the countryside a few kilometres outside of Assen in the Netherlands is much more important than the road. Therefore the cycle path is clear while the road (on the left) is completely covered in snow. Video showing the path is here:

www.youtube.com/watch

The same path in the summer is in photo #11785
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
14256Photo #14256This car may look in the photo as if it's overtaking the cyclists, but it's not. There is no one in the car, which is parked. The driver has chosen to park in such a way that he blocks the road instead of the cycle lane.

Assen, Netherlands.
Obstruction:
Good practice
obstructions
11720Photo #11720These arches over the cycle path appear to have been installed for no reason other than that they're nice to have.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13989Photo #13989There's no cycle path here, but there is a service road next to the main road, which gives cyclists wonderful traffic free conditions.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13492Photo #13492There's an event on in Assen, so extra cycle parking has been provided and there is are yellow overflow cycle parking signs ([P] Fiets) installed on this and several other lamp-posts to point to the overflow cycle parking areas just outside of the city centre.Cycle parking:
Good practice
cycleparking
12377Photo #12377The Tegelijk Groen sign tells you that all the green cycle lights will go green at once and you can cross in any direction (even diagonally).

If you watch the video you'll see how this leads directly to a newly upgraded road. Note how the side road is treated, with plenty of space but cyclists having priority.

Note that the layout on the ground now differs a great deal from Google's aerial photography which shows a much more old fashioned arrangement giving more space to cars and less to bikes.

This video leads to the photo of bike parking shown in #12376

There is more information about simultaneous greens here: hembrow.blogspot.com/2008/08/simultaneous-green.html
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
15897Photo #15897The surface on this cycle / pedestrian bridge is being repaired. As a result, at the moment there are a few bare panels which can be slippery when wet. The sign reads "slippery bridge surface"

The cycle path over the bridge is 4 m wide, the pedestrian path 2 m wide. Cars cannot take this direct route to the city centre.
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
12498Photo #12498The sun's shining, it's a lovely day and here I am cycling flat out on a proper segregated bike path which goes for another 4 km before I have to worry about a road junction.

I'm here, the cars are over there. Just try crashing into me, skimming past etc. I dare you !

Watch the video to see what happens when I meet a major road that is as yet 4 km into the distance.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
20092Photo #20092The snow plows are only two metres wide, while the cycle path is four metres wide. Some cycle paths therefore end up only half width in the middle of the winter.

Assen, Netherlands.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
20144Photo #20144The snow continues to fall daily, but most of the cycle paths remain clear here in Assen.Other:
Good practice
general
12527Photo #12527The sign says "Countryside Area". 60 km/h is about 35 mph on this rural road. That's the highest speed limit I've known on a road which I've shared with drivers in the Netherlands, and you only share such a road where traffic volumes are very low.

For drivers this is a dead end road which goes to a nature reserve. However, cyclists have various bike paths that lead from it.

The sign shows what drivers might come across in the countryside. Tracttors, people, frogs (endangered here).
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
12493Photo #12493The sign says "Bridge Open - Motor Off". A request for drivers not to pollute the air when a boat is entering or leaving the lock and the bridge is open for it.

These signs are quite normal on the many lifting bridges in the Netherlands.
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
14503Photo #14503The sign reads "Take Care. Cyclists in the bus lane"

Cyclists are never expected to share space with buses in the Netherlands, but in this case the cycle path is being resurfaced so cyclists have to use the bus lane. However, buses were being kept out of it by cones, so actually the bus lane became the temporary cycle lane, much as in #13358

There is a video showing how this works here:
uk.youtube.com/watch

Also a blog post discussing it here:
hembrow.blogspot.com/2008/09/fietsers-oversteken.html
Obstruction:
Good practice
obstructions
12599Photo #12599The sign for drivers says "Assen 16 / Groningen 14 / Zuidlaren 9". The bike route sign says "Assen 15 / Groningen 12 / Zuidlaren 8". It is almost always the case that cycle routes are more direct than driving routes.Route sign:
Good practice
routesigns
12349Photo #12349The routes taken daily by the four different special cycle path gritting trucks which operate in Assen. They cover 207 km of cycle path each day, keeping the whole clear of icy patchs and safe to use through the winter.

This information was printed in the local paper so that everyone knows what they're up to.

It's -6 C today (22nd December). Plenty of bikes around.
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
11806Photo #11806The new cycle path on Vaart ZZ. This replaces what was already a fully segregated path, with a better quality version of the same. It's decently wide (three metres) so not even a "steam" roller on the path (here as part of the works) can block it.Obstruction:
Good practice
obstructions
13312Photo #13312The neighbour's nanny with a child on a trike with trailer. Residential roads here are used by children with all sorts of contraptions like this.

A few days previously the child sitting in the back was riding the trike and pulling his 9 month old younger brother in the trailer.

Roads here are not just for cars.
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
20543Photo #20543The main road, with a speed limit of 70 km/h, runs alongside this minor road which has been made into a through road only for cyclists. This is a cheap and effective way of building good cycling infrastructure.

Note that while we stop at a set of traffic lights here, the timing is the same as if we'd been on the road. What's more, the next set apply only to drivers and we ride right on whatever colour they are.

Note also the noise barriers to reduce the impact of the sound of cars at 70 km/h on residents. It is rare in the Netherlands to find a road which could cause a noise nuisance which doesn't have such barriers. Also, the road surfaces used create less noise in the first place.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
14440Photo #14440The Jeugdtour is the largest youth cycling race in the world, which attracts competitors from all around the world. It is a week long event held annually in Assen. This photo is from the criterium, which is held on roads closed for the occasion. Other events are on other closed roads, on cycle paths through the woods or on the cycle racing track.

In 2009, Assen is hosting the prologue and first stage of the Vuelta.

You can see a video of racing in this location here: uk.youtube.com/watch

They may be juniors, but they're fast as you'll see from the video. From here, riders progress into professional racing.
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
20650Photo #20650The headline "Assen still has enough gritting salt". The photo above it shows how pot-holes are dealt with before they have a chance to get serious. They're fixed even before the winter has gone.

A gas burner is used to melt the ice away and the holes are filled and smoothed over immediately. It needs to be done like this. It's still -8 C half way through February.

To keep high quality road surfaces, road maintenance can't stand still for half the year.

See also #20471 for the other way that pot-holes are avoided: immaculately smooth surfaces which don't have gaps for ice to form in.
Pothole:
Good practice
potholes
29371Photo #29371The excellent multi-storey bicycle park at Groningen Railway Station. Many bicycle saddles have received a rain cover with advertising.Cycle parking:
Good practice
cycleparking
12268Photo #12268The entirely rural 30 km/h around the village of Deurze. This zone is about 1.5 km long on mostly empty rural roads with just a few houses. The other end of the 30 km/h zone shown in #12136

"Let op, rechts heeft voorrang" is to tell people travelling along here to give way to traffic emerging from the right. Unless there are road markings to indicate otherwise you always give way to traffic from the right in the Netherlands, even if it's emerging from a minor road.
General sign/notice:
Good practice
signs
15470Photo #15470The cyclist on the left is confident enough that the road will be free of ice that he's cycling with no hands.

Even though it's a minor road, it's completely clear or ice and snow. The roads and cycle paths are gritted daily through the winter.

More photos of cycling in Assen here: hembrow.blogspot.com/2008/12/bit-of-snow.html

More details of the gritting here:
hembrow.blogspot.com/2008/11/gritting.html

This road is only a through road for cyclists. Except for access, cars are behind the concrete noice barrier on the left.
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
11779Photo #11779The cycle paths in the Netherlands are suitable for high speed riding and are well used by racing cyclists travelling at speed.

They're difficult to photograph as they're difficult to keep up with. I huffed and puffed on my 3 speed to get within striking distance of this guy before he disappeared into the distance.

This is the cycle path on the other side of the road from the sequence shown from #11773. Another view of this path showing the treatment of a side road is shown in #11780.

To see the way that cyclists get from this path into the city, see the video at #12598
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
14185Photo #14185The cycle path alongside this dual carriageway has had to be removed temporarily. However, you can't inconvenience cyclists like that, so they've closed half the dual carriageway so that cyclists can use it.

This is in Assen in the Netherlands.

There is a video of this marvellously wide "cyclepath" here: www.youtube.com/watch
Obstruction:
Good practice
obstructions
12123Photo #12123The council here in Assen publishes a couple of pages in the local paper each week about things that are going on. Today (15th November) this article was included:

--------------------

Gritting - Why bollards are removed in winter

Winter is on the way. While it has not yet frozen or snowed, the city is preparing for this.

The city has more to do this year than previous years. So that paths remain passable the city has had to produce a new gritting plan. Planners are set on making it as safe as possible.

This month the bollards on some cyclepaths are being removed. This is so that the gritting lorries can access the paths and grit them.

Naturally this does not mean you can drive your car on cycle paths.

--------------------

The poles referred to are actually very rare and never cause an obstruction. One is visible here: #11534. How marvellous that I can look forward to a winter of being able to continue to use the cycle paths. Of course, it helps that cycle paths here are always wide enough to drive a truck on, that they're surfaced well enough to withstand such weight, and that drivers told not to drive on the cycle paths won't do so.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
11804Photo #11804The centre of Assen. As ever this demonstrates the wide demographics of cyclists in the Netherlands.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
20607Photo #20607The canal next to this cycle path freezes regularly, so it's a good chance for people to skate.Cycleway:
Event
cycleways
11722Photo #11722The canal is crossed by a series of lifting bridgesOther:
Infrastructure
general
13311Photo #13311The all important junk mail delivery in Assen, Netherlands.

This huge bicycle trailer carries vast amounts of paper and must be very heavy to pull with a bike.

Lots of delivery jobs are done with bicycles in this area.

The junk mail can be opted out of with a sticker on the letterbox as shown here: hembrow.eu/personal/rubbish.html
Bicycle:
Good practice
bicycles
12831Photo #12831Terrible rough surface for anyone driving a motor vehicle, but a fine path for cyclists.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
14301Photo #14301Temporary parking for the fietsvierdaagse in a field at a farm.

This is the location of one of the controls, and also a nice place for a coffee.
Cycle parking:
Infrastructure
cycleparking
12300Photo #12300Temporary bike parking stands which previously were deployed in a totally routine manner on a local building site so that workers could use them and now awaiting collection.Cycle parking:
Good practice
cycleparking
34266Photo #34266T junction of cycle path meeting another branch of 'no through route' 30kph road.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13736Photo #13736Study Tour participants waiting for others who are measuring a road.

Four metre wide cycle path.
Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13739Photo #13739Study Tour participants on 4 metre wide cycle path in Assen, Netherlands.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
28580Photo #28580Study tour on Groningerstraat in Assen, a road of similar width to Gilbert Road in Cambridge.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
28581Photo #28581Study tour on Groningerstraat in Assen, a road of similar width to Gilbert Road in Cambridge.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
13728Photo #13728Study Tour group on 4 metre wide cycle path. Groningerstraat in Assen.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways
20138Photo #20138Still cold, but the postal delivery goes ahead by bike on cycle paths clear of snow and ice. Assen, Netherlands.Cycleway:
Good practice
cycleways

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