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Advisory cycle lanes outside built-up areas

Pilot project

Landkreis Northeim - K 424
Landkreis Northeim - K 424 © PGV-Alrutz

Initial situation

The German Road Traffic Regulations (StVO) does not allow the application of cycle lanes for non-built up roads, since there is a lack of knowledge concerning their safety aspects. On roads with high levels of traffic, the standard instrument for cycle traffic outside built-up areas are shared off-road footways/cycle tracks. Nevertheless, also some streets with lower levels of motorized traffic require a more distinctive way of cycle guidance with improved safeguarding.

Subject of examination

This project aims to close this knowledge gap by testing advisory cycle lanes on both carriageways on streets with a frequentation up to 4,000 motorised vehicles per day (regarding the Recommendations for Cycling Facilities (ERA) 2010 above this frequentation there is a crucial need for separated cycling facilities even at a speed limit of 70 kmph). Subject of examination are streets which after the marking of the cycle lanes only leave room enough for one car (minimum of 2.75 m), therefore in case of a car-to-car encounter both cycle lanes will have to be used.


Phase 1

Based on criteria agreed on by the steering committee a total of 15 routes for examination in 5 Länder (countries) and 7 different administrative districts had been chosen in phase 1. These routes cover frequentations from several 100 up to 3,800 motorised vehicles per day with street width between 5.20 to 7.50 meters. Some points along these routes are of particular interest for the outcome of the examination, like crossings, narrowing of the roads, sharp turns and hilltops with limited view.

Along these chosen roads bike lanes had been marked outside built-up areas. The bike lanes in the administrative districts of Northeim and Grafschaft Bentheim have been coloured red, following examples from the Netherlands. Some of the partners pointed out the proving ground with signs. Additionally the country of Baden-Wuerttemberg is going to take part in the project with three more routes following the same approach, even though not formally being a part of the project.

Phase 2

Goals of the current second phase of the project are:

  • Monitor the impacts of the bike lanes on the safety of traffic and the acceptance by and the behaviour of all traffic participants through a suited concept of examination,
  • evaluate the outcomes regarding the overall knowledge on safeguarding and promotion of cycling,
  • deduct conclusions and recommendations on the range of implication and dimensions of bike lanes outside built-up areas and
  • point out if there is any need for further development of the StVO and the technical guidelines.

Taking this into account it is also very important that the outcomes are transferable. The focus of the evaluation is on the collection of empirical data, which will be used to determine the effects of traffic safety and the acceptance of the new regulations by drivers and cyclists.

The following steps of collection are planned on each route, mostly in order to enable pre-post comparisons:

  • Analysis of accidents
  • Count of cyclists and cars
  • Measuring of speed of cars
  • Stationary video surveillance
  • Pursuits with mobile cameras
  • Interviews with traffic participants
  • Interviews with local authorities and stakeholders

Timetable and prospect

Before the pilot project started, every administrative district informed the people via their local media. The pre-test collections of data had been conducted in May 2013, and the bike lanes were marked along all routes by the end of July 2013. The post-test collections will start in August 2013, and last until September 2014. Afterwards the results will be compared and conclusions will be drawn.

Why is it an innovative example to follow?

Since the project won't be finished until the end of 2014, no assessment of the project and the possibilities of transfer can be done.


Governmental funds
Funds of the federal states
Municipal funds
400 000 €

The cost of investments are not final. The running expenses (213,885 Euro, Govenmental funds) take into account the whole time of the project



Systematic pre-post collection of data along all routes (counts, speed measurements, analyses of accidents, behaviour observation, interviews)

Project manager / parties involved

Project management: 

Ministry for Energy, Infrastructure and Country Development of Mecklenburg-Eastern Pomerania; Department for Country Development

Project parties involved: 
  • PGV-Alrutz
  • AB Stadtverkehr GbR
  • Urbanus GbR

Project term

The project is estimated as on-going without a special end date: 
On-going since: 
March 2012
Completed on: 
December 2015
Further information: 

Phase I: 03/2012-08/2012, phase II: 09/2012-12/2015

Public relation and documents


Ansprechpartner auf Projektebene: 

Herr Bernd Sievers
Ministerium für Energie, Infrastruktur und Landesentwicklung Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
Abteilung Landesentwicklung
Schlossstraße 6-8
19053 Schwerin
Telefon: +49(0)385/588 8431
Telefax: +49(0)385/588 8042

Hauptauftragnehmer für die projektbegleitende Evaluation
Dankmar Alrutz / Stefanie Busek
Adelheidstraße 9b
30171 Hannover
Telefon: +49(0)511/220601-88
Telefax: +49(0)511/220601-80

Unterauftragnehmer für die projektbegleitende Evaluation
Arne Blase / Wilhelm Angenendt
AB Stadtverkehr GbR
Thomas-Mann-Straße 29
53111 Bonn
Telefon: +49(0)228/3905090
Telefax: +49(0)228/3905091

Unterauftragnehmer für die projektbegleitende Evaluation
Stefan Luft / Peter Krausse
Urbanus GbR
An der Untertrave 81-83
23552 Lübeck
Telefon: +49(0)451/7062666
Telefax: +49(0)451/7062667

Kommunale Ansprechpartner: 

Frank Adenstedt
Landkreis Grafschaft Bentheim
van-Delden-Straße 1-7
48529 Nordhorn
Telefon: +49(0)5921/961633

Herr Hendrik Colmer
Stadt Köln
Amt für Straßen und Verkehrstechnik Verkehrsplanung
Willy-Brandt-Platz 2
50679 Köln
Telefon: +49(0)221/221-26495

Jan Juraschek
Fontanestadt Neuruppin
Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 33
16816 Neuruppin
Telefon: +49(0)3391/355730

André Schumann
Landkreis Northeim
Wirtschaftsförderung und Tourismus
Scharnhorstplatz 6
37154 Northeim
Telefon: +49(0)5551/91499-18

Ralf Zünskes
Willy-Brandt-Platz 1
50126 Bergheim
Telefon: +49(0)2271/834678

Frau Dagmar Fockenga
Kreis Stormarn
FD Planung und Verkehr
Mommsenstr. 14
23843 Bad Oldesloe
Telefon: +40(0)4531/160-473

Date (Text as of…)
15. July 2013
Bernd Sievers, Ministerium für Energie, Infrastruktur und Landesentwicklung Mecklenburg-Vorpommern; Dankmar Alrutz, PGV-Alrutz; Stefanie Busek, PGV-Alrutz
NRVP action fields