Cycle Super Highways to generate more cyclists in Greater Copenhagen Area

| June 6, 2012

Commuters keen on cycling to their place of work or education in the Greater Copenhagen area have just gotten their first route in what will become a whole network of world-class cycle routes. Denmark’s first ‘cycle super highway’ between the suburb Albertslund and Copenhagen’s City Centre opened in April. 

With few stops and a high level of comfort, the Cycle Super Highways will make it fast, easy, and safe to reach more destinations.

By Søren Bom and Lillan Clemmesen, City of Copenhagen

The official opening at Damhussøen

The first cycle super highway in the Greater Copenhagen area is now open. A temporary orange line, permanent air pumps, and green-light waves are just some of the perks that are intended to get more people to bike to their place of work or education on the route named ‘C99 Albertslundruten’ [the Albertslund route]. The route runs between Vesterport Station in central Copenhagen to the suburb Albertslund , 17.5 kilometres away and is the first piece of a new network of 26 routes, making up more than 300 kilometres of cycle super highways.

”If we can get more people to park the car and jump on the bike instead, it can curb congestion. For a long time, we have seen the potential in getting more people to bike to and from Copenhagen, so it is great to see the project realised. Collaborating with our neighbouring municipalities and the Capital Region of Denmark about the cycle super highways is the best offer to cyclists since we built the first cycle tracks more than 100 years ago,” says Ayfer Baykal, Mayor of the Technical and Environmental Administration in Copenhagen.

The partnership behind the first cycle super highway consists of the Capital Region of Denmark and the Municipalities of Albertslund, Glostrup, Rødovre, Frederiksberg, and Copenhagen. According to the plan, two more routes will open this year, called ‘Farumruten’ and ‘Vestvoldruten.’ More than 200 cyclists participated in the opening of the first cycle super highway, which had been announced in newspaper ads and on Facebook. Orange bike bells and a taste of Copenhagen City Hall’s famous pancakes served as encouragement and fuel.

200 cyclists join the opening ride that ended in Copenhagen City Hall’s garden with a sample of the famous City-Hall pancakes.

The object of the cycle super highways is to get more people to bike further than usual, as surveys indicate a great potential there. Today, a third of all trips to one’s place of work or education in Copenhagen are conducted by bike, and most of these trips are less than 10 kilometres long. The cycle super highways can potentially increase the number of cyclists by 30 percent, corresponding to 15,000 more cyclists on the whole cycle super highway network. This will save about 7,000 tons of CO2 and about 300 million DKK in health costs per year.

The cycle super highways project is a multi-annual project. The partnership consists of more than 20 municipalities and the Capital Region of Denmark, all of whom participate in the planning and financing of the routes. The project has also received a state subsidy.


Facts: C99 the Albertslund Route

  • C99 the Albertslund Route connects Vesterport Station in Copenhagen with the municipalities of Frederiksberg, Rødovre, Glostrup, and finally, Albertslund.
  • The route is marked with an orange line to show that you are on a cycle super highway and to avoid stops to read signs. The line only lasts for a couple of weeks but may become permanent.
  • In order to be a cycle super highway, the Albertslund Route needs to meet some quality requirements. Among other things, only a few stops and obstacles are allowed, and the path must be wide enough for all commuters to bike at their own pace. Thus, existing cycle tracks on the route have been lifted.
  • Obstacles and ‘missing links’ have been removed, and the lighting along the route improved to make it safe to bike year round, day and night.
  • Cyclists can also pump their tyres en route so they won’t get stranded with a flat. Air pumps are available every 1.6 kilometres. In addition, 12 foot-rest racks have been set up at stopping points to make the overall ride more comfortable.
  • The partnership behind C99 the Albertslund Route consists of the municipalities of Copenhagen, Frederiksberg, Rødovre, Glostrup, and Albertslund and the Capital Region of Denmark. The route is 17.5 kilometres long. In total, the costs of bringing the route up to code amount to about 14.2 million DKK (about 2 million Euro).


Typical traits of a cycle super highway

  • A high and consistent level of maintenance along the entire route, despite its transcending municipal boundaries.
  • Constructing level crossings that help secure cyclists from traffic to and from byroads.
  • Green light waves, LED Lane Lights, and countdown traffic lights so cyclists can adjust their speed and avoid having to make a full stop.
  • Improved safety in high-traffic intersections.
  • Light on the route and in tunnels.
  • In many places, new cycle tracks and surfaces have been constructed to ensure a high level of comfort and traffic safety.

Air pumps every 1.7 kilometres are one feature of Denmark’s first cycle super highway.

Chairman of the Capital Region of Denmark, Vibeke Storm Rasmussen, and politicians from the host municipalities paint the last bit of the orange line on the cycle super highway.

A temporary orange line makes it easier to find the way for the first couple of weeks.


Category: Infrastructure, Newsletter 7

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