Cycling Cities: The Arnhem and Nijmegen Experience is the first book in the new series Cycling Cities: The Global Experience. The book, written by Eric Berkers and Ruth Oldenziel, was presented at Velo-city 2017.
The Dutch cities of Arnhem and Nijmegen both have a rich history of every aspect of cycling: utilitarian, leisure, and sport. Separated by two rivers for so long, today they are drawn closer through the cycle highway RijnWaalpad, aptly named after the rivers. The fast cycle route symbolizes their newfound joint efforts to encourage cycling as a healthy, efficient, and sustainable means of transport for this urban region.
The book traces the fascinating cycling histories of Arnhem and Nijmegen—from cycling tourists in 1900 scaling the region’s charming yet hilly landscape to urban commuters navigating the car-governed urban planning of the 1950s and 1960s and from cycling activists of the 1970s and the local and regional policymakers committed to cycling over the last two decades.
Cycling Cities: The Arnhem and Nijmegen Experience tells the tale of how two cities managed to become The Best Cooperating Cycling Region in the Netherlands in 2015; the host for two stages of the Giro d’Italia in 2016; and joint organizers of the world’s largest cycling conference Velo-city in 2017.
The first PhD focuses on the governance of cycling in The Netherlands in a transnational context, with emphasis on the institutional role of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment since the 1920s in relation to selected cities and provinces. The second PhD focuses on the multi-level governance of cycling in The Netherlands through a number of historically significant case studies since the Second World War. The third PhD focuses on new mobility concepts in relation to cycling, assessing current trends and their potential. The fourth PhD focuses on the role of connected cycling in relation to the unfolding sharing economy.
Amsterdam Cycling Chic writes. The Best Summer Read: “We were lucky enough to take a ride and have a coffee with esteemed Professor, lecturer, and researcher Ruth Oldenziel, co-author of the latest and greatest book Cycling Cities: The European Experience. It’s 200 pages are carefully researched and thoughtfully describe how cycling came to be (or not so much) in several European cities – with Dutch cities as a backbone story of cycling decline, automobility, then incremental change towards what are now urban cycling “success stories”. Of course every city has its own story, culture, and responses to change, and this work delves into those stories from 14 cities in 9 countries. From Budapest’s bicycling revival to Manchester’s “standstill”; Lyon;s corporate enterprise to innovations in Malmö we can read about diverse trajectories in urban cycling but all with the same goal: to get more people on bikes.” Amsterdam Cycling Chic interviews one of the authors.
How to create a cycling city? And is Amsterdam the real deal as the cycling capital of the world or not? Yesterday, Ruth Oldenziel kicked off the conversation with a guest lecture at the University of Amsterdam’s Summer School Grad Course Planning the City, where thirty scholars and practitioners from all over the world are studying these questions. These students were surprised to learn from Cycling Cities that Amsterdam’s history with cycling is checkered and almost an accident of history. The students learned about the five factors explaining why some cities cycle and others do not.