Monday, 25 July 2016

Sorry for not posting and some quick numbers

Hi. Sorry I haven't posted in a month. I've been going through a lot with me being now a 16 year old and with the biggest news of all. I'm going on a trip to Northern Europe. And yes, I will be going to Amsterdam. No, I will not be smoking pot while I'm there. You have to be 18 to do that (and I kinda don't want the kind of experiences that some report even if I have a better chance of dying off of going up my staircase). I will however be cycling. Only an idiot tries to drive through Amsterdam in a private vehicle.

I will be posting quite a lot while I'm there, I'm going to be experiencing Dutch cycling for the first tie in my life, sorry David if you're reading this, a study tour is not something that my dad is planning, I'm going to be cycling in London UK, Europe (for now), on their new protected cycleways, taking a bullet train for the first time in my life at 300 km/h, my first ever trans continental plane trip. I leave soon.

To get your taste buds tantalized, I created a list with some quick numbers. I thought about the statistical cost of car crashes in Edmonton and it was quite surprising what I found. More than a quarter of a billion dollars every year. And this is on the way low end of the estimates, some put it at over a billion for Edmonton alone. I wondered what would happen if we got all of that crash money and did something useful with it. Enjoy:

278.76 million dollars costs capital region per year. What else could we spend it on?

50 million dollars for cycling, about 4000 km of paint and bollard and signed protected bike lanes (temporary) in year one and 400 km of protected bike lane to curbed cycle track conversions per year.

30 million dollars for 300 new protected intersections costing 100 thousand each

50 million dollars for 125 roundabouts each year, 400 thousand on average each,

48 760 000 dollars for 4876 new rasied zebra crossings generally with median refuge islands, 10 thousand each

50 million dollars for 5000 kilometres of new access roads per year costing 10 thousand dollars per kilometre

50 million dollars 33 new bicycle and pedestrian overpasses and underpassed costing 1.5 million dollars each

Over 4 years, one capital budget cycle and political term, we get:

1600 km of curbed cycle track and 2400 km of paint and bollard cycle track, 2/5 of the way to go for all collectors and all arterial roads.

1200 new protected intersections (unlikely to need to be this high, money can likely transfer to roundabout contstruction after the first or second year)

500 new roundabouts, some single lane and some turbo roundabouts (unlikelty to be this low as the need for traffic light junction reconstruction will likely go away after the first or second year)

19500 new raised and well marked zebra crossings.

20 thousand kilometres of 30 km/h access road.

132 new bicycle and pedestrian underpasses.

Overall, you can see that there is far too high a price to pay for our traffic crashes. We could get so much in even just 4 years, even in just one! We could be so Dutch in just four years! Incredible. But we do very little. Not even sensible ideas like these.


  1. Christian van Elven26 July 2016 at 07:38


    You don't know me, but i've been following your blog for a while. I saw your comments on Bicycledutch and it's very interesting to see how a Canadian looks at (the dutch (cycling))infrastructure in comparison to situations in Edmonton. Altough i almost never comment on blogs, yours is very interesting to read :)

    My name is Christian van Elven, i'm a 20 year old student from the newtown of Almere, near Amsterdam. Right now i'm studying city planning at the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. I just wanted to let you know that if you have any questions, or need help with designing something, i would love to help. Cityplanning is kind of a passion for me, i really like to think about improvements of situations and maybe even 'exporting' some good Dutch design.

    Anyway, very interesting blog. Keep up the good work! And goodluck with learning Dutch ;)

    1. Ik wil bent op het nederlands in twie dagen. Als je ziens, mijn nederlands is geen het alle goed (het G, ik geen kunt spreekt dat :-) ).

      By any chance, are you any good at computer aided design of roadways? I know a few areas in my city that I'd like to create designs for, but I don't have any good CAD tools where I live that is free. Maybe you already have a program. I also wonder whether you have a copy of the CROW Design Manual for Bicycle Traffic? If so, good, it would be very helpful if you were able to create some designs for me. Credit to you for your help of course.

      Also, city planning is two words, not one. You Dutch are good at making compound words, English, not so much.

  2. Sorry, my english isn't perfect either :P But you will be in the Netherlands in two days?

    I do have AutoCad (and i can work with it) and i can also work with Illustrator and InDesign, so i can make some designs. I don't have the CROW Design Manual, altough i'm considering to buy it. I have to say that i when i normally design things, i work on a higher scale. But i know the basic measures and principles when designing neighbourhoods and infrastructure.

    But as i said, if you are interested, i would like to help/work with you on some things.

    1. Ja, @ Amsterdam Schipol op twie dagen.

      If you get a copy, and I'm not pressuring you to spend 90 of your own euros on it just for me, only get it if you want one, then that would be quite useful.

      The first thing I want to make a reality is this scene at this school:, an autocad design with the cycle paths coming one way on the approaches but turning into a bidirectional cycle path just in front of the school. I included a number of cross sections to give you an idea of scale, and the google streetview link to the location is here:,-113.5363369,3a,75y,355.23h,82.57t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1syUfH-04whidcOOKkXkLCFw!2e0!!7i13312!8i6656.

      I would like it as close to the way that the Dutch engineers might design a path like that. Buses nor trucks over 7500 kg or over 10 metres in length would be used in my proposal, and the immediate area around the school would be a 30 km/h zone, transitioning back to a 50 km/h distributor road just outside of the area between the cycle priority crossings (the crossings themselves are designed for 30 as well), and on 15 Ave, it would start about 100 metres to the west of the junction with Rutherford Rd.

      Can you make it work? I'd be so happy to see an actual design like it (and can you include some people cycling? Without helmets of course ;-)

  3. Hm, it's going to be a bit difficult because i don't have an Autocad Map of the area, or all the specific measures. But i will try :) Have to say i am very busy this summer, so it might take a while.


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