Analysis of cyclists’ safety on “bicycle streets” in four large Dutch municipalities: A crash risk and conflict study

Odijk, M.J.M.; Nabavi Niaki, M.; Ulak, M.B.; Geurts, K.T.

Starting in the 2000s, a new type of bicycle infrastructure, the fietsstraat (bicycle street) emerged, and has been implemented throughout in the Netherlands. A bicycle street is a street on which a minimum of two functions are combined; a flow function for bicycle traffic, and an exchange function for motor vehicle traffic. Therefore on bicycle streets, cyclists are given priority and motorized vehicles are expected to adjust their behavior. This sharing of road space, where motor vehicles are subordinate to bicycles, makes bicycle streets interesting for transportation planners as they are more space efficient. However, mixed traffic conditions are often associated with increased crash risk for non-motorized modes [1]. A handful of studies have addressed the topic of bicycle street safety [2, 3, 4, 5]. Common findings from these conflict and perceived safety studies are that motor vehicle intensities, the road width (incl. rabat strip width), and speed are significant predictors for dangerous encounters and perceived safety. These studies provide a basis for understanding traffic safety on bicycle streets. However, little is known about how the traffic safety on bicycle streets compared with other facilities in terms of crash occurrence and risk for cyclists, and the effects of traffic volumes and design on user behavior and crash rates on bicycle streets. This scarcity of research, in combination with increasing implementation of bicycle streets, is problematic, especially in times of increasing bicycle crash numbers in the Netherlands [6]. The aim of this study is to provide insight into the safety of bicycle streets, using historic crash data as well as the near crash events (i.e., conflicts). [From introduction]

Published in
Book of Abstracts 11th International Cycling Safety Conference 2023, 15-17 November 2023, The Hague, the Netherlands
SWOV, The Hague

SWOV publication

This is a publication by SWOV, or that SWOV has contributed to.