29. November 2010

Green Party Politician Gives up - Frustrated about Hamburg Bureaucracy

GAL-Politiker gibt auf - Frustriert wegen Bürokratie

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Confusing: Cycling allowed in Rotherbaum, district of Eimsbüttel
Bernd Achilles left the green fraction in the district of Eimsbüttel. For many years he was the spokesman for traffic policy of the fraction in Hamburg-Eimsbüttel. Traditionally the district of Eimsbüttel is more cycle-friendly than the Hamburg average. The green party was in coalition with the social-democrats for more than a decade. Many exemplary cycling projects were implemented in that time.

The retreat of Bernd Achilles points on the problems of traffic policy in Hamburg. Fighting for better cycling is extremely hard. In Hamburg parking lots still count more than safe cycling, at intersections cycle tracks are still built for pedestrians pushing bikes instead cycling, because cycle tracks suddenly end up, most politicians decide about cycle infrastructure from behind the windscreen, and cycling is damned to a matter of expendable leisure time. Cycling politicians with practical knowledge are still the absolutely exception.

Hamburg as upcoming European Green Capital cannot afford to do without politicians like Bernd Achilles. His retreat lets assume that something is wrong with cycle traffic and green policy in Hamburg.

Example for struggling for better cycling in Eimsbüttel: Authority bans cycling in winter

Examples for success under green participation in Eimsbüttel
Beispiele für Erfolge unter GAL-Beteiligung in Eimsbüttel

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
First places in Hamburg: Racks for good cycle parking on . . .
hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . part of the road lane (Hartungstraße, Bornstraße, Allendeplatz) . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . to offer easy cycle parking . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . on former car parking lots

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Many years parking on the cycle track in Bundesstraße in front . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . of a school was a tradition. Cyclists switched onto the sidewalks . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . as long as the police refused to prevent cycle track from . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . illegal parking. A renewal of the popular cycle track and . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . protection against illegal parking were supported

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
The district of Eimsbüttel has more than average of the typical Hamburg cycle parking garages. Above average Eimsbüttel supported bicycle parking in these garages with special funding

Examples for failures under green participation in Eimsbüttel
Beispiele für Misserfolge unter GAL-Beteiligung in Eimsbüttel

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Although the coalition in Eimsbüttel decided to change bad design of bus stops . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . at Frohmestraße, money was waste to renew them in old fashion style with unusable cycle tracks and extremely narrow sidewalks. These cycle tracks still have the obligation to be used
hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
With renewal of Mittelweg cycle lanes were rejected to support more parking lots, but . . .

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
. . . cycling was allowed on sidewalks. The new signs are still confusing, cyclists could understand to cross street with red light
hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Request for speed limit of 30 km/h in Eppendorfer Weg was rejected

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Disgrace: Asphalting of damaged cobble stones surface along a new cycle route was cancelled

hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Another disgrace: Cycle route proceeds straight across the main road, but cyclists cannot follow the route. They have to turn to the right. Traffic rules still are not coordinated with the official running of the cycle route
hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Cars dominate the street: Still no improvements for cyclists and pedestrians at Grindelallee

Read report in Eimsbüttler Wochenblatt: GAL-Experte schmeißt hin (03.11.2010)
Related to topic another report in Bergedorfer Zeitung: Zwischen Wunsch und Wirklichkeit (19.05.2010)

28. November 2010

Basel Citizens Decide to Reduce Car Driving by 10% - More Money for Velo

Cycling in the 21st century: Most Basel cycle routes look extremely exemplary and decades ahead compared to Hamburg
Basel in Switzerland shows the right way. The citizens decided to reduce car traffic until 2020 about 10% and to spend 10 Mio CHF (7.5 Mio €) for pedestrian and cycle traffic during the next four years. Environment Protection Act of Basel will be adapted according to the citizens vote.

Today 40% of Basel citizens use a car, 60% use tram, bus, cycle or just walk.

More Basel on hamburgize.com:

26. November 2010

Perfect Example for Cycle Traffic at Construction Site (2)

Perfect conditions at Dammtordamm
Vorzeigemodell für Radverkehr an Baustellen (2)

Car drivers don´t like passing Dammtordamm these days, but cyclists can feel happy about traffic management under the railway bridge near Dammtor station. Uncommonly for Hamburg construction sites cyclists have on both sides of the street ways to pass related to Dutch or Danish standards. Cyclists and pedestrians got a perfect way on the right part of the road lanes on both sides of the streets. Hopefully the good examples will become standard for the future.
Perfect conditions at Dammtordamm

Some month ago cyclists had to use detour about 4 km length at Deichtorplatz / Amsinckstraße, while car drivers and pedestrians could pass the construction site directly. Usually cyclists find a closed cycle track at a construction site, sometimes with the sign "Radfahrer absteigen" (Cyclists get off), a mixture of different traffic signs give contradictory advises, or cyclists should use the cycle track on the left site of the street for a short distance.

Usually cyclists are not welcome at Hamburg construction sites:

Very bad example Amsinckstraße / Deichtorplatz: To reach the houses beyond the bridge cyclists should have taken a detour of 4 km, while car drivers and pedestrians were allowed to pass the construction site.

Amsinckstraße / Deichtorplatz at the railway bridge: No way for cyclists

Bürgerweide / Wallstraße 2010: The cycle track ends up at construction site

"Cyclists get off": This sign is not allowed any more in Hamburg due to planning guidelines for cycle traffic, but still in use.

North Sea Cycle Route and Elbe Cycle Route at Vorsetzen 2010: Cyclists ignore the instructions

Wallstraße / Bürgerweide 2010: Very often cyclists should take a detour along the sidewalk on the left side of the street including crossing the street for two times

Classified Cycle Route No. 2 at Weidenallee 2010: Putting information plates directly on the cycle track is still very popular

Good example, cyclists are welcome here in Copenhagen

Read also Perfect Example for Cycle Traffic at Construction Site

Piece of Evidence for Bicycle Culture?

Beweis für Fahrradkultur?
© hamburgize.com / Stefan Warda
Post office at St. Pauli - Hamburg

"Fahrräder müssen bitte draußen bleiben!!!" - Bicycles have to stay out please!!! I noticed this sign on the door of the post office in my neighbourhood. I never noticed the sign before, although I visit the post office at least once a week. Yesterday I thought about the meaning of it. The conclusion: My neighbourhood got an award for being a cycling neighbourhood. Not only that there is the desire to visit the post office with a cycle, but even the little word "bitte" makes the conflict somehow friendly. Thank you!

At least now St. Pauli is in a row with other cycle capitals.

Does your city have bicycle culture?
Copenhagenize.com - Building Better Bicycle Cultures: 18 Ways To Know That You Have Bicycle Culture

The Status of Hamburg Cycle Tracks - Christmas Market Celebrated on Cycle Tracks

"Winter Magic": Christmas market on cycle tracks
Der Stellenwert der Hamburger "Radwege" - Weihnachtsmarkt veranstaltet auf dem Radweg

Germans love their christmas markets during the weeks before christmas evening. In Hamburg even cycle tracks are closed for celebrating christmas markets. Visitors might be astonished, because parallel car traffic is not impaired. On Monday Hamburg´s first Mayor opened christmas market at Jungfernstieg. For six weeks cyclists have to use the road lane instead of the cycle track along the cycle routes 3 and 4 because booths selling mulled wine, fried sausages and candles are placed along the them. In summer some other events are celebrated on the cycle route tracks. Safety for cyclists cannot be the reason for building cycle tracks in Hamburg if commercial reasons are weight stronger. Promotion of cycle traffic in the 21st century looks different than offering cyclists a place on the road lane together with cars in traffic jam.

Cycle track transformed into sidewalk via traffic sign

Many cyclists still try to use the former cycle track

Obviously cyclists do not feel like giving up cycling in winter

Cycling in the car cue seems to be uncomfortable

No promotion of cycling

 A confused cyclist tries to push the bike between the booths at WINTER MAGIC

No way for cyclists, only on the road lane

Some other cyclists switch onto the road lane

Confused cyclist gets off and push bike

Irritated cyclist looks after the cycle track . . .

 . . . and decides to take the sidewalk . . .

... and continues cycling between pedestrians

The incorrigibles among the cyclists still look after the accustomed cycle track . . .

. . . even between the booths of christmas market

 - Same place three years ago -

Poor confused cyclists . . .

. . . in winter magic mood

Some years ago before renewal of the cycle tracks another event on the cycle track in summer time

By the way the Jungfernstieg cycle track is one of the most invisible ones of the city due to design reasons. Pedestrians do not respect the cyclists privilege anyway, although the invisible cycle tracks are rather new, they are not state of the art.
The quite normal situation without christmas market: No respect, . . .

. . . pedestrians feel very comfortable on the cycle track . . .

. . . and force cyclists to switch onto sidewalk