Traffic lights in ‘s-Hertogenbosch (NL)

Traffic lights in ‘s-Hertogenbosch (NL)


Traffic signals:
we love and hate them. They can provide a safe passage, but
we really only like to see the green light. In ‘s-Hertogenbosch you do get
to see that green light very quickly. Just getting near the lights already
seems to turn them green for you. Some people push the reassurance button,
but that’s not even really necessary. How can this be? It is because there
are detection loops. Well ahead of the intersections. Cyclists are detected early, so the lights
can change for them. The first loop is at 25 meters. If the traffic situation allows it, you
will have a green light… before you even reach
the second loop. You can get green so quickly, because
phases are kept as short as possible. If there is only one vehicle,
the green time is just 4 seconds. Not only for a car,
but also for a cyclist. If more vehicles were detected
the light stays green longer. Just long enough to let the last vehicle
pass through the yellow light. If necessary and possible the green time
can be very long indeed, also for cycling. Buses directly influence the lights. When they are on time or running late they get
a green light as quickly as possible. If they are too early
even buses have to wait. Waiting times increase when
there is a lot of other traffic… and especially when
there is a bus. This young man is a bit unlucky, but he waits decently. The waiting time indicator is
an extra incentive to wait. Not everybody is that patient. But look how silly it is
to run a red light just before it turns green. Some motorists are just as bad. ‘s-Hertogenbosch has a unique
countdown for motorists. The quicker the cars start,
the quicker the junction is clear again. Which means shorter
waiting times for cycling. All this leads to
helpful traffic signals. So people can make
safe and quick crossings, without being annoyed
by long waiting times.


40 thoughts on “Traffic lights in ‘s-Hertogenbosch (NL)

  1. My dream would be for the entire state of California to have a traffic infrastructure like this. What is bike traffic/commute like in the Netherlands when there is rainfall?

  2. 1:20 7 cars go through on that 12-second green cycle. That would never happen in America, too many distracted morons.

  3. 3:18 No that was not red, if you're doing a piece on traffic lights then you know (or should know) that they are timed VERY strictly, as in sometimes red in one direction means green in the other direction immediately (without 'intersection-clearing-all-red'). I'll bet you 50 euros that Volvo didn't run a red light.

  4. El sistema lleva bastante tiempo integrado y funciona de maravilla. No estoy seguro pero creo que inclusoy tiene en cuenta la hora que es (es decir, tiene en cuenta las horas puntas para bicis y para coches) y tambien el clima. Ya que cuando llueve parece que a las bicicletas se les da mas preferencia que a los coches para continuar con su ruta.

    En todo caso, el mundo entero deberia aprender por lo menos esta virtud de los holandeses.

  5. "Traffic signals: we love and we hate them". Is it OK that I don't have any particular feelings towards traffic signals on either side of the spectrum?

  6. I've experienced those traffic lights in Amsterdam with a digital count down timer. I wish they had the same thing here in England, so intuitive and logical I have no idea why it's not used here.

  7. Hmmm what about a place like Vancouver where drivers get a green arrow and stare at it so it is about 5 seconds before they clue in and enter the intersection

  8. The Dutch are doing an amazing job. That's why I like to spend my holidays there cycling. But they give too harsh penalties for speeding a bit or wrong parking.

  9. In my city, Groningen, traffic is really slow.
    I have been thinking for years Groningen needs smarter traffic lights.
    I didn't even know other places in the Netherlands had this.
    This is fantastic. We need this.

  10. Close to where I live there is a green-light streak. It measures your speed and if possible, makes all the lights on the trajectory green when you get to them. Awesome!

  11. 3:15
    JUST as bad? really, except the cyclist has

    lower speed
    lower mass
    no blind spots to check for traffic
    no crosswalk full of cyclists and mom+baby just ahead

    yep, even pro bike country the car-focus mentality is strong.

    nice system either way, i hope it will become even better everywhere when autonomous vehicles become the norm

  12. They talk about smart lights in Belgium for years now, but it seems we are still miles of compared to what it should be. (maybe the people that have to implement it, needed to finish a five year course in the Netherlands first)
    – the lights don't detect you in advance, but when you are already stopped in front of the light
    – no way the light can tell if a bus is on time or late
    – the time between red from one side and green from another side is too long, creating unnecessary down time for everyone
    – lights have no option for being green as short as 4 sec or as long as a minute
    -…

  13. Here in California, it's at least 3 seconds before the first car goes on a left turn and it takes 3 seconds for each car to go.

  14. Will never happen in London… car drivers love the sport of harnessing cyclists… truck drivers just run them over

  15. In GER the pedestrians get green on every Phase, also if no one activate it. This results in very long "Dead-Phases", where the non-existence pedestrians can clear the streets but also results in long waiting time for every one other. Waiting times that are not necessarily. ._.

  16. Nice about the traffic signal actuation, that is done well. But I saw something else In this video: evidently, the public school bicycling classes do not teach how to stop and restart efficiently and safely. Man people in the video hop forward off the saddle. Others tiptoe with one foot on the ground while remaining seated. This is practical with a low saddle but the saddle on the bicycles shown is too high to make this very stable. Gears are not used efficiently for acceleration, if a bicycle has them at all. I don't see a single example of the pedal-step technique taught in League of American Bicyclist and CyclingSavvy courses.

    0.09 kid is sitting on the saddle at a stop with both feet dangling, then hops off.

    0:25, the man hops off with both feet, then reaches out to push the button on the pole.

    0:32: one bicyclist hops forward, the other awkwardly remains sitting on the saddle tiptoeing with one foot to keep the bicycle upright.

    1:19 a cyclist is using a pole for balance while remaining seated and tiptoeing.

    1:41 A cyclist is seated on the saddle, one foot on the forward pedal near the bottom of the stroke, unable to apply power to restart efficiently, and the other foot on a curb, then finally pulls the pedal up when he has finished rearranging things in his bag.

    2:27 A cyclist remains seated with both feet on the pedals, using the pole with the pushbutton for balance. This is actually efficient if you have a pole, or a starter at a velodrome, to hold you upright. But 2:44, he starts out in a very high gear. This appears to be the only gear the bicycle has.

    3:00 another pole balancing act and the bicycle has derailleur gears but the cyclist isn't using them effectively — starts in a middle gear, then appears actually to shift down as he speeds up.

    3:15 a crowd of bicyclists waiting and not one is poised to restart efficiently. They start out awkwardly and slowly. The clip cuts off just as another cyclist is about to cut across at speed in front of them, having ignored a traffic signal and riding the wrong way.

    3:50 cyclist is off the saddle but she put the wrong foot on the ground when she stopped, and doesn't turn the cranks backward to starting position.

  17. And back in Germany the green phase for bikes at the Berlin central station is exactly 3 Seconds while motortraffic gets 2 Minutes. I mean: who could possibly think that building a car tunnel and a main road next to a public transport hub is a bad idea?

  18. " I don’t see even one cyclist who has learned or been taught how to stop and restart efficiently and safely. Many hop forward off the saddle. Others tiptoe with one foot on the ground while remaining seated. This is practical with a low saddle but the saddle on most bicycles shown is too high to make this very stable. Gears are not used efficiently for acceleration, if a bicycle has them at all. I don’t see a single example of the pedal-step technique taught in League of American Bicyclist and CyclingSavvy courses.

    0.09 kid is sitting on the saddle at a stop with both feet dangling, then hops off.

    0:25, hops off with both feet, then reaches out to push the button on the pole.

    0:32: one bicyclist hops forward, the other awkwardly remains sitting on the saddle tiptoeing with one foot to keep the bicycle upright.

    1:19 a cyclist is using a pole for balance while remaining seated and tiptoeing.

    1:41 A cyclist is seated on the saddle, one foot on the forward pedal near the bottom of the stroke, unable to apply power to restart efficiently, and the other foot on a curb, then finally pulls the pedal up when he has finished rearranging things in his bag.

    2:27 A cyclist remains seated with both feet on the pedals, using the pole with the pushbutton for balance. This is actually efficient if you have a pole, or a starter at a velodrome, to hold you upright. But 2:44, he starts out in a very high gear. This appears to be the only gear the bicycle has.

    3:00 another pole balancing act and the bicycle has derailleur gears but the cyclist isn’t using them effectively — starts in a middle gear, then appears actually to shift down as he speeds up.

    3:15 a crowd of bicyclists waiting and not one is poised to restart efficiently. They start out awkwardly and slowly. The clip cuts off just as another cyclist is about to cut across at speed in front of them, having ignored a traffic signal and riding the wrong way.

    3:50 cyclist is off the saddle but she put the wrong foot on the ground when she stopped, and doesn’t turn the cranks backward to starting position."

    – John. S. Allen
    2019

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