Source: Fietsberaad, 21 March 2021.Beijing is planning to become a pedestrian- and cyclist friendly city. To succeed in their ambitious goal, the city of Beijing is collaborating with Dutch Company Royal Haskoning DHV. This Dutch company is designing a cycling highway in Tongzhou, eastern entrance to the Chinese capital.
Over the years, multiple governmental organisations have been moving out of the center of Beijing to the adjacent Tongzhou district. Around the Tongzhou district, new residential areas arise and this brings opportunities to promote walking- and cycling infrastructure in dense residential areas.
A newly 2,7 km cycling highway is designed to connect the center of Tongzhou with the residential areas. In order to promote frequent usage, the designers have opted for a design that is as straight as possible, at a certain height passing a canal, rail track and car highway. See the header photo, this shows a sketch with several facilities of the highway to bring shade, less air resistance, functional use of rainwater and cover against wintery conditions. Other features such as tunnels will also be part of the project.
The entire design is based on existing Dutch projects like the Rijnwaalpad in Arnhem/Nijmegen and tunnels at the Amsterdam Central Train Station. The cycling highway needs to be operational in 2023. The district of Tongzhou is planning to offer 2,300 km of cycling infrastructure in 2035.
Quite recently, Beijing opened a specially designed cycling trajectory of 6,5 km with notable characteristics. Traffic rules restrict the maximum speed to 15 km/h, electric cycles are currently forbidden and the center lane reverses direction during rush hour.
This trajectory must eventually lead to betters flows of traffic, reducing congestion between the residential areas of Huilongguan and Shangdi. In these two areas, there are also many high-tech compagnies located.