Amsterdam to "knip" cars in the bud

Although Amsterdam is renowned for its dense bike traffic it never-the-less has far too many people still trying to get around the city in private cars.

With bikes, pedestrians and road-based public transport already short of road space, something has to give.

And yes, it is the inefficient and unhealthy car—used by 19% of commuters—that is getting the chop.

Knip is the Dutch word for cut, and it is the word they are giving to a new plan to discourage non-essential car trips into central Amsterdam.

Many of the direct and convenient car routes surrounding the city centre are going to suffer a knip—through traffic will simply be cut off.

Bikes and pedestrians and local traffic will still have access, but a series of traffic calming measures will re-direct cars through a maze of streets.

Instead of driving from A to B, those driving to the city will go from A to M to D to Q to B.

It will be so slow and inconvenient that drivers will give up and find another way to travel.

This technique has already been used in many places around the world with great impact, and has already been introduced successfully within the Amsterdam CBD, where it has reduced traffic by 70%.

Ten central through-routes will be treated, using one-way configurations, road narrowing, and barriers.

To further encourage drivers to give up their keys, the city also announced plans to open the Amsterdam Metro all night on weekends starting in 2021, and to make all weekend transit free for children under 12 in the same year.

Also coming is a ban on all petrol and diesel-powered cars by 2030.

Another measure under discussion is allowing taxis into central Amsterdam only if they have been summoned or have a ride to drop-off, a way of making sure that downtown streets don’t get clogged with cruising, passenger-less vehicles.

The city has also been systematically stripping away parking spots.

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