Urban mobility

Groningen is one of the fastest-growing cities in the Netherlands and is developing constantly. In some 10 to 15 years, the municipality will have grown with 25% and might have as many as 250,000 inhabitants. We are therefore faced with a tough development task: a lot has to happen in the limited space we have. One of the challenges is to keep the pressure on the city’s public space manageable. To improve the safety, flow, and appeal of the city center, measures should be taken to make sure the limited space for pedestrians, cyclists, and vehicles is used as efficiently as possible.

One of these measures is setting up so-called ‘shared spaces’ for pedestrians and cyclists, where behavior on the road is determined by social rules instead of traffic rules. Consequently, people show more consideration towards each other. An example of such a shared space is the Folkingestraat, one of the busiest roads in the city center. Especially cyclists and pedestrians occupy a lot of the limited space here. It is the most important route from the station towards the center, is part of the main shopping area, and also constitutes an important city cycling route.

Though first experiences show that the relatively unclear situation stemming from a shared space leads to more careful behaviour and therefore to an increase in traffic safety, conflicts can still arise, particularly on busy days.

– A smart solution to facilitate the combination of cyclists and pedestrians even better
– Positively contributes to the residential climate of the city centre, regarding aesthetics, safety and accessibility.
– Efficient use of the limited space in the inner city for accessibility of shops and hospitality sector, taking into account conflict avoidance between visitors.
– Scalable and flexible. Applicable in multiple spaces, while minimizing the impact on physical space, transportation and costs.

Issued by: Ruimtelijke beleid en ontwerp

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