We are inviting Irish politicians to join us on a Dutch cycling study tour to Utrecht, our tour is aimed to be low-cost but still wide-ranging. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for the details.
Our last Dutch study tour in 2015 included a mix of councillors, civil servants, consultants and campaigners, and we’re aiming for a similar mix this year.
Even if you have visited the Netherlands before, going on a cycle study tour with Dutch experts on hand is a completely different experience. It’s about doing so in an informed way and visiting different design examples usable in different contexts in Ireland. For example, context like “this was 5 lanes now it’s bus/bike only” (as in the case of the main image above) or this used to be a motorway-like junction and now a canal was reintroduce (see the before and after images below).
The details are vital and we’ll be looking at examples of Dutch cycle paths, high-capacity train and city centre bicycle parking, a bicycle parking guidance system, cycling-friendly housing estates, bicycle bridges and much more.
It’s not strictly about cycling, Utrecht is a great example of making urban areas into more liveable places. Here’s ‘before’ and ‘after’ Google Street View images from the same location:
Some of the people on the last study tour wrote of their experience in a mini-series:
- “If it doesn’t work for children, we haven’t yet succeed” -Eugene Doran, member Dublin Cycling Campaign
- “I have never felt as relaxed and happy cycling” – Barbara Connolly, Cycling Standard Development Officer, Cycling Ireland.
- “The freedom and ease to simply cycle where you need to go” – Keith Byrne, former chairman of the Dublin Cycling Campaign.
- “The infrastructure was there to make cycling as safe and pleasant as possible” – Phil Skelton, Stayin’ Alive at 1.5 campaign.
Here’s another type of example of redefining and reallocating space:
Using precious city space for cars was a big mistake. Utrecht has moved on; this square is now for people again. Domplein, Utrecht, NL pic.twitter.com/jGePRnsOKc
— Mark Wagenbuur (@BicycleDutch) June 18, 2017