Leuven-based HYPE helps cyclists find the most optimal route without traffic disruptions

19/10/2021

Leuven-based web development agency HYPE, the Fietsersbond and VRT join forces to launch a reporting application that allows cyclists to keep each other and the news service informed of traffic disruptions on bicycle paths.


Commuting by bike is on the rise, thanks to popular e-bikes and the corona crisis. Yet since the 1980s, the traffic bulletin has focused exclusively on motorists. With the Cyclists' Union (Fietsersbond) app, HYPE, the Cyclists' Union and VRT want to digitally support the social shift towards better, distributed mobility.

Bicycle information in the traffic news

More and more people are consciously choosing to commute by bike. Although the government has increased its efforts in recent years to build quality cycle paths and highways, this mobility shift is not reflected in the traffic news. For example, the traffic bulletin on the radio and online limits itself to traffic jams, obstacles and accidents applicable to car traffic. A missed opportunity, according to the Cyclists' Union, because cyclists also benefit from a traffic update on their driving route. In this way, they can avoid dangerous junctions, which contributes to fewer traffic accidents and greater bicycle safety.

"The Cyclists' Union app offers a wealth of traffic information, both for cyclists and for the VRT news service. In addition to being an innovative project with great future prospects, the application is part of the larger mobility whole, in which safe cycling is a priority. It's great that, as a development agency, we can be part of this shift towards a more varied mobility!"

- Maarten Verhavert, Managing Director HYPE




User-friendly notification application for cyclists

To keep cyclists in Flanders informed of traffic on bicycle paths, the Fietsersbond and VRT developed the Fietsersbond app at the beginning of this year, a user-friendly reporting application for cyclists. The technical part was entrusted to the technical partner HYPE from Leuven, a development agency specialized in building digital products and experiences. After a successful test period last summer, the app is now presented to the general cycling public.

More cycling comfort and traffic safety

HYPE developed the Cyclists' Union app as a clear platform on which cyclists can report traffic obstacles with just a few clicks. A defective traffic light, roadblocks on the bicycle highway, a slippery bike path or fog, ... Each report is indicated by an icon on the map, so other users are immediately aware of a potential obstacle on their route. The VRT news service also consults these reports in a structured manner via the platform, selects the points of interest it wishes to highlight and includes them in the traffic bulletin.

Although the app currently functions as a low-threshold notification tool, the possibilities for the future are open. For example, the app may eventually be expanded to include alternate bicycle routes, allowing cyclists to flexibly adjust their roadway when an obstruction occurs on the fixed bicycle route.