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Author Topic: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland  (Read 1427 times)

kernals12

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The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« on: May 27, 2022, 09:43:53 PM »

Here's something you won't see on NotJustBikes


A2

A4

On this portion of the A1, they've even got reversible lanes!

Amsterdam's main beltway, the A10 is having its southern portion buried and widened from 8 lanes to 12

And that's just the start. A planned widening of the A27 near Utrecht would see the freeway widened to 14 lanes
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csw

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2022, 09:52:11 PM »

what's your point
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Rothman

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2022, 09:53:06 PM »

what's your point
Europe's got big roads.
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kernals12

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2022, 09:57:37 PM »

My point is that the Dutch have not in fact solved all their transportation problems with bike lanes, despite what many will have you believe.
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DenverBrian

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2022, 10:02:17 PM »

I'll bet their asphalt lasts more than ten years, too.
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SkyPesos

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2022, 10:58:30 PM »

They may have wide freeways, but the important part imo is that there's plenty of high-quality alternative ways to get around in the Netherlands (trains, trams, bikes, etc), giving people a choice on how they would like to get around. This is something the US lacks, where everyone is forced to drive in most places, and that there's no alternative methods. It's my main issue with transportation in the US, not just a plan "hurr durr cars/roads are bad" that you see on reddit.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2022, 11:04:03 PM by SkyPesos »
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My Fictional Highways

Fundamental Theorem of AARoads - Let "y" represent the elevation above sea level in a certain area. If "Δy" between the highest and lowest values of y equals to 0, it's Illinois.

kernals12

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2022, 11:08:21 PM »

They may have wide freeways, but the important part imo is that there's plenty of high-quality alternative ways to get around in the Netherlands (trains, trams, bikes, etc), giving people a choice on how they would like to get around. This is something the US lacks, where everyone is forced to drive in most places, and that there's no alternative methods. It's my main issue with transportation in the US, not just a plan "hurr durr cars/roads are bad" that you see on reddit.

America has far less congestion than Europe. We're doing something right.
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SkyPesos

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2022, 11:18:26 PM »

They may have wide freeways, but the important part imo is that there's plenty of high-quality alternative ways to get around in the Netherlands (trains, trams, bikes, etc), giving people a choice on how they would like to get around. This is something the US lacks, where everyone is forced to drive in most places, and that there's no alternative methods. It's my main issue with transportation in the US, not just a plan "hurr durr cars/roads are bad" that you see on reddit.

America has far less congestion than Europe. We're doing something right.
None of the images of Dutch freeways you posted look congested either, so I guess they're doing it right as well.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2022, 11:20:50 PM by SkyPesos »
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My Fictional Highways

Fundamental Theorem of AARoads - Let "y" represent the elevation above sea level in a certain area. If "Δy" between the highest and lowest values of y equals to 0, it's Illinois.

kernals12

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2022, 12:25:33 AM »

They may have wide freeways, but the important part imo is that there's plenty of high-quality alternative ways to get around in the Netherlands (trains, trams, bikes, etc), giving people a choice on how they would like to get around. This is something the US lacks, where everyone is forced to drive in most places, and that there's no alternative methods. It's my main issue with transportation in the US, not just a plan "hurr durr cars/roads are bad" that you see on reddit.

America has far less congestion than Europe. We're doing something right.
None of the images of Dutch freeways you posted look congested either, so I guess they're doing it right as well.
If we look at actual data, we see that American cities dominate the list of least congested
https://www.tomtom.com/en_gb/traffic-index/ranking/
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SkyPesos

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2022, 01:20:51 AM »

If we look at actual data, we see that American cities dominate the list of least congested
https://www.tomtom.com/en_gb/traffic-index/ranking/
Looking through the data, Dutch cities are pretty low as well. For example, Amsterdam at 18% and Utrecht at 15% seems pretty good to me.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2022, 01:24:28 AM by SkyPesos »
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My Fictional Highways

Fundamental Theorem of AARoads - Let "y" represent the elevation above sea level in a certain area. If "Δy" between the highest and lowest values of y equals to 0, it's Illinois.

Rothman

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2022, 04:26:57 AM »

They may have wide freeways, but the important part imo is that there's plenty of high-quality alternative ways to get around in the Netherlands (trains, trams, bikes, etc), giving people a choice on how they would like to get around. This is something the US lacks, where everyone is forced to drive in most places, and that there's no alternative methods. It's my main issue with transportation in the US, not just a plan "hurr durr cars/roads are bad" that you see on reddit.

America has far less congestion than Europe. We're doing something right.
None of the images of Dutch freeways you posted look congested either, so I guess they're doing it right as well.
Dear heavens...can't handle a silly statement like this, this early in the morning.
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Rothman

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2022, 04:27:43 AM »

If we look at actual data, we see that American cities dominate the list of least congested
https://www.tomtom.com/en_gb/traffic-index/ranking/
Looking through the data, Dutch cities are pretty low as well. For example, Amsterdam at 18% and Utrecht at 15% seems pretty good to me.
...because of their big roads. :D
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Chris

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2022, 07:49:59 AM »

My point is that the Dutch have not in fact solved all their transportation problems with bike lanes, despite what many will have you believe.

I'm from the Netherlands and this is a point I often like to make. The Dutch cycling infrastructure is not just good, it's a whole separate class compared to any other country in the world. Yet, the modal split is almost 80% car. It's actually only a few percentage points lower than European countries that do not have any cycling culture. Dutch public transit usage is relatively low because cycling is often faster in cities. Cycling options are great, but overall it's less of a revolutionary change in transportation than many advocates make it out to be.

Most people seem to think that densification is required for cycling to work. But that is not the case. The Netherlands is largely not a densely built urban environment, but mostly a single-family residential environment. This allows for cycling infrastructure to be mostly separate from roads, including grade-separation. In the Netherlands, cycling is in fact better in suburban areas than in the city cores, where there is less space and more stops. This is also good for drivers: unlike other countries, cyclists don't have to share busy roads with cars.

The Netherlands lacks very large cities. By far most Dutch people live in cities with a population under 200,000. These cities are compact, but not particularly dense. This means that cycling distances are often doable. However commuting is often between cities. Which is where the motorways come into play. The Netherlands has the second-busiest motorway network in Europe (after the UK). The busiest road in the Netherlands is A4 at the Hague, it carries 280,000 vehicles per day. These are traffic volumes you also find in Los Angeles or Houston.

I also like to add that a tourist perspective of transportation is often very different from a daily routine like commuting, running errands, going to family or for recreation. Many tourists visit Amsterdam and are amazed that almost nobody seems to be driving a car. But they do not see the 8 - 10 - 12 lane motorways around Amsterdam.

Chris

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2022, 07:54:36 AM »

I'll bet their asphalt lasts more than ten years, too.

The Netherlands uses porous asphalt on almost the entire motorway system. This asphalt reduces noise and has superior drainage capabilities. You can drive 80 mph in heavy rain without any spray.

The life cycle of porous asphalt is around 10 years on the right lane (where most trucks are) and a little more on the left lanes. The Netherlands has a maintenance cycle of only resurfacing the top layer (during night or weekend closures). This means there are almost no long-term construction zones. It also eliminates the need to replace it down to the foundation for the most part. Some motorways still have layers of asphalt dating back to the 1960s.

kernals12

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2022, 11:19:40 AM »

I didn't include any photos of 8 lane freeways because those have become extremely common. I think Holland has the widest freeways in Europe now. You'd be hard pressed to find roads with more than 6 lanes in France, Germany, or England.

Another thing that bugs me is the claim that Holland was a car dependent country in the 1970s, and the only evidence given for that are photos of Amsterdam before they pedestrianized their streets. That is the opposite of the truth. Holland's passenger car fleet has tripled since those photos were taken. Just recently, they passed the milestone of 1 car for every 2 people. In fact, all the traffic calming, the bike lanes, they car free downtowns are how the Dutch have chosen to manage the explosion in the number of cars on their roads.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2022, 11:27:19 AM by kernals12 »
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Chris

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #15 on: May 28, 2022, 12:45:10 PM »

The Netherlands was one of the first countries to construct freeways in the 1930s, by World War II, the Netherlands had the largest freeway network in Europe after Germany, in fact it may have had the third-longest freeway network in the world at that time (after the U.S. & Germany).

However car ownership was still pretty low at that time. Car ownership exploded after World War II, there was a brief period of time, especially in the 1950s and early 1960s, when almost everything was still centered in the historic town and city squares, which turned into large parking lots. However later in the 1960s, new suburban neighborhoods were built and the importance of city centers declined significantly, this also gave the opportunity to shift car usage mainly to those new areas and pedestrianize old towns.

It should be noted that the Netherlands has had the largest population growth in Europe after World War II, the population grew from 9.3 million in 1945 to 15.5 million by 1995. Highway construction initially kept pace with this large population growth, but it started to lag after the 1980s. A major change occurred in the early 1990s when women entered the workforce, female labor participation changed very rapidly in only a few years. As a result, the vehicle miles traveled exploded during the 1990s. On some motorways the traffic volume doubled in less than 15 years.

It was forecasted in the early 2000s that the Dutch population growth would slow significantly. However due to mass migration, population growth continued and the projection of 17 million inhabitants was achieved in less than half the time experts thought it would. The Dutch population is still growing by a million people each decade and population projections have shifted upward to over 20 million.

This is a small country and this scale of growth has proven unsustainable in many areas: natural values, traffic congestion, public transport overcrowding, even bike lane overcrowding is a thing. There is a huge housing crisis ongoing, housing prices have essentially doubled in a decade while incomes did not, making it practically impossible for young people to get into the housing market. I know several 30-somethings that have a stable, good-paying job, but live with their parents because they cannot find a house.

DenverBrian

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #16 on: May 28, 2022, 03:27:43 PM »

I would guess one of the reasons the Netherlands has such a cycling culture is because it's so flat. Without significant grades, even 80-year-olds can cycle around pretty easily.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #17 on: May 28, 2022, 03:37:47 PM »

I would guess one of the reasons the Netherlands has such a cycling culture is because it's so flat. Without significant grades, even 80-year-olds can cycle around pretty easily.

So, you're saying the Netherlands is the Illinois of Europe?
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kernals12

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #18 on: May 28, 2022, 05:30:50 PM »

I would guess one of the reasons the Netherlands has such a cycling culture is because it's so flat. Without significant grades, even 80-year-olds can cycle around pretty easily.

So, you're saying the Netherlands is the Illinois of Europe?

I think it's closer to Florida, topographically and climactically.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #19 on: May 28, 2022, 05:43:24 PM »

I would guess one of the reasons the Netherlands has such a cycling culture is because it's so flat. Without significant grades, even 80-year-olds can cycle around pretty easily.

So, you're saying the Netherlands is the Illinois of Europe?

I think it's closer to Florida, topographically and climactically.

Clearly you are not an acolyte of the Church of Wallethub:

https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=30421.msg2741847#new

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SkyPesos

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #20 on: May 28, 2022, 06:00:50 PM »

I would guess one of the reasons the Netherlands has such a cycling culture is because it's so flat. Without significant grades, even 80-year-olds can cycle around pretty easily.

So, you're saying the Netherlands is the Illinois of Europe?
https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=30387.0
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My Fictional Highways

Fundamental Theorem of AARoads - Let "y" represent the elevation above sea level in a certain area. If "Δy" between the highest and lowest values of y equals to 0, it's Illinois.

Chris

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #21 on: May 29, 2022, 05:48:31 AM »

Here are some photos of A1 at Muiden, just east of Amsterdam, which has 10 lanes + 2 reversible lanes. The reversible lanes are actually a regional system that stretch across 3 different freeways (A1, A6 & A9).


A1 Muiderberg 01 by European Roads, on Flickr


A1 Muiderberg 04 by European Roads, on Flickr


A1 Muiderberg 09 by European Roads, on Flickr


A1 Aquaduct Vechtzicht Muiden 02 by European Roads, on Flickr

Max Rockatansky

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #22 on: May 29, 2022, 10:08:13 AM »

I would guess one of the reasons the Netherlands has such a cycling culture is because it's so flat. Without significant grades, even 80-year-olds can cycle around pretty easily.

So, you're saying the Netherlands is the Illinois of Europe?
https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=30387.0

Im amused how that was a thing and I didnt even remember it.
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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #23 on: May 31, 2022, 01:48:30 AM »

The main difference is that while the Netherlands has really wide freeways, none of them go through the city center. All of these examples of wide freeways are freeways on the edge of a city (or in the suburbs), or freeways connecting two cities together.

kernals12

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Re: The Texas-Sized Freeways of Holland
« Reply #24 on: May 31, 2022, 02:56:50 AM »

The main difference is that while the Netherlands has really wide freeways, none of them go through the city center. All of these examples of wide freeways are freeways on the edge of a city (or in the suburbs), or freeways connecting two cities together.

That's generally the case in the US too. Most of our downtown freeways are 8 lanes at most.
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