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Amsterdam, the City of Bicycles

Amsterdam is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in the world, with an estimated 800,000 bikes within the capital. In contrast, the city has a population of only 750,000 – less than the number of bikes. According to an estimate made 5 years ago, 490,000 bicyclists take to streets everyday and together they log more than 2 million kilometers, each day.

Amsterdam is one of the most important centres of bicycle culture worldwide with special facilities for cyclists such as bike paths and bike racks, and several guarded bike storage garages (Fietsenstalling) which can be used for a nominal fee. Compared to other transportation in the city, bikes are cheap, fast and clean while also offering inherent health benefits. Bikes also take up relatively little space.

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Over 60% trips in the inner city are made by bikes and 38% of trips are made by bike overall in the greater city area. There are 400 km of bike path within the city.

Amsterdammers ride a wide variety of bicycles including the traditional Omafiets - the ubiquitous Dutch roadster with a step-through frame - to anything from modern city bikes, road bikes, mountain bikes, and even recumbent bikes. Many tourists also discover Amsterdam by bike, which is the typical Dutch way. One of the benefits of bicycle riding is that in the city centre, driving a car is discouraged, parking fees are expensive, and many streets are closed to cars or are one-way. Bicycle traffic, in fact traffic in general, is relatively safe - in 2007, Amsterdam had 18 traffic deaths, of all types, in total.

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Photo credits: Sergey Dolya, Petr_Kuznets, Zyalt

5 comments:

  1. Eighteen traffic deaths in '07 and in all the pictures I only saw a helmet on one head...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Very informatory and interesting too!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Christ on a biscuit, I hate America.

    ReplyDelete
  4. And when my city wants to install one bike lane people lose their minds. Dammit Calgary.

    ReplyDelete

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