In car-clogged urban areas across the world, the humble bicycle is enjoying a second life as a legitimate form of transportation. City officials are rediscovering it as a multi-pronged (or -spoked) solution to acute, 21st-century problems, including affordability, obesity, congestion, climate change, inequity, and social isolation. As the world's foremost cycling nation, the Netherlands is the only country where the number of bikes exceeds the number of people, primarily because the Dutch have built a cycling culture accessible to everyone, regardless of age, ability, or economic means.
Chris and Melissa Bruntlett share the incredible success of the Netherlands through engaging interviews with local experts and stories of their own delightful experiences riding in five Dutch cities. Building the Cycling City examines the triumphs and challenges of the Dutch while also presenting stories of North American cities already implementing lessons from across the Atlantic. Discover how Dutch cities inspired Atlanta to look at its transit-bike connection in a new way and showed Seattle how to teach its residents to realize the freedom of biking, along with other encouraging examples.
Tellingly, the Dutch have two words for people who ride bikes: wielrenner ("wheel runner") and fietser ("cyclist"), the latter making up the vast majority of people pedaling on their streets, and representing a far more accessible, casual, and inclusive style of urban cycling-walking with wheels. Outside of their borders, a significant cultural shift is needed to seamlessly integrate the bicycle into everyday life and create a whole world of fietsers. The Dutch blueprint focuses on how people in a particular place want to move.
"Building the Cycling City shows how people worldwide inspire each other to create better cycling cities. The book celebrates local heroes who choose to adapt Dutch ideas to their own demands. The resulting urban transformations often became an inspiration to Dutch city builders themselves. Melissa and Chris Bruntlett offer not only inspiring stories, but also concrete plans and effective strategies for cycling cities. This is a must read for both cycling advocates and urbanists."--Saskia Kluit, CEO, Fietsersbond and President, Dutch Cycling Embassy
"In sharing their two-wheeled adventures and the lessons of Europe's greatest cycle cities, the Bruntletts offer a pragmatic and hopeful vision of the future. Building the Cycling City shows how all cities can follow the Dutch blueprint for health, happiness, and mobility freedom."--Charles Montgomery, author of "Happy City: Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design"
"All designers of bicycle infrastructure would do well to read the book...It's a book that even many cycling advocates would do well to read...Most importantly, it's a book that should be in the hands of every elected official of every city everywhere."--Transportation Planning
"An informative and enjoyable read that will inspire anyone interested in learning more about Dutch transportation planning and policies...Building the Cycling City left me inspired."--Sightline
"I would equate Building the Cycling City to riding a Dutch bike. You don't want to rush through it like a road bike, but it hauls a lot of lessons from the Dutch cycling experience which are practical to North American cities and delivered in an upright, easy to read manner."--Dandyhorse
"Unflaggingly optimistic...Building the Cycling City is an accessible read."--Environment & Urbanization
"If cycling as a mode of transportation interests you and you're not impressed with our half-ass bike lanes, Building the Cycling City should be on your reading list."--Urban Review Saint Louis