Monday, 27 October 2008
Back in 1990 the Dutch government producted a masterplan for cycling, which included this video produced in English and sent around to world (including Polish subtitles in this example) to let everyone know what their intentions were so far as cycling was concerned.
The Masterplan contains estimates of what it was hoped would be achieved by 2010, and it appears that they're going to be successful in meeting the targets.
Very many areas of the world don't have examples of infrastructure such as you'll see in this 18 year old video. Very much of it here has of course been improved once again since the video was made.
It's a great example of joined up thinking. The cycling rate here has not come about by accident. It's the result of a consistent policy stretching over decades and concentrating on making conditions for cycling attractive.
By way of contrast, the UK had a "National Cycling Strategy" in 1996 which had an aim of doubling cycling by 2002 and doubling again by 2012. It was abandoned in 2004 after the rate of cycling had declined over the previous 8 years - just one of many times that promises have been broken. The very consistency of the Dutch approach is a large part of the reason for its huge success.
For more information, we have many articles about cycling in the Netherlands on our website, including the Master Plan from 1999.