US cycling from a Dutch perspective

We interrupt our coverage of the dire problems of our climate to repost this article on American bicycle culture from a Dutch point of view. And in a way, this is also an article about reaction to climate change–the Dutch and the Danes and many of their European counterparts get around just fine on a bicycle for most of their daily tasks. Their elected officials take cyclists (and pedestrians) seriously, and realize it’s better for their respective countries if they aren’t using up fossil fuel to get everyone from point A to B.


While a delegation from Portland Oregon was visiting my hometown ’s-Hertogenbosch and some other places in the Netherlands to experience Dutch cycling, I was looking at cycling in the United States. Not that that was the main goal of my journey -I was in the US for a self-paid holiday and to visit friends- but I couldn’t help seeing and recording what some of the cycling and the infrastructure was like. (Video at the end of this post.)

san-francisco The average cyclist in San Francisco seems to be a young fit adult, mostly male and appears to be in a constant hurry. And if you don’t understand that remark; this is my frame of reference.

Cycling in Amsterdam In Amsterdam (and elsewhere in the Netherlands) the range of people cycling is much broader.

Of course I know it is not really possible to say something in general about “cycling in the US”. There are…

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