West Street, Sheffield, as it would look if cars were sidelined in favour of cyclists and pedestrians, according to an AI-generated image created via the Dutch Cycling Lifestyle appWest Street, Sheffield, as it would look if cars were sidelined in favour of cyclists and pedestrians, according to an AI-generated image created via the Dutch Cycling Lifestyle app
West Street, Sheffield, as it would look if cars were sidelined in favour of cyclists and pedestrians, according to an AI-generated image created via the Dutch Cycling Lifestyle app

Cycling: 10 eye-catching images show how Sheffield streets would look Netherlands-style, with cars sidelined

West Street, London Road and Abbeydale Road have all been reimagined with cars sidelined to make more space for pedestrians and cyclists

Cyclists pedal gently through flower-filled streets, as pedestrians saunter along cobbled avenues.

Planters full of colourful blooms line the pavements, and beside every lamppost a bicycle is tethered, waiting for its rider.

In Broomhill, a cyclist glides past blooming beds of wildflowers instead of through the rumble of buses and cars. On West Street and Broad Lane, gone are the clouds of exhaust fumes in favour of pedestrianised thorughfares enclosed by flowers.

Meanwhile Abbeydale Road and Ecclesall Road - near Nonna's, and further along near Berkeley Precinct - are unrecognisable as boulevards where families stroll between shops and enjoy a coffee at pavement cafes.

Welcome to Sheffield, as it could look - Netherlands-style.

The bright and beautiful images, created especially for The Star, are all AI-generated, thanks to a new app called Dutch Cycling Lifestyle. Masterminded by holland.com - the website of Netherlands tourist board - the technology allows users to 'go Dutch' and imagine how their streets might look if cars were sidelined in favour of cyclists and pedestrians.

A spokesman for the app said: "This tool is developed for people to get inspired, and add a touch of the Netherlands to their street. Our artificial intelligence makes every street greener and more pleasant, in an instant."

Betty-Ann Hutchin, a coach with Sheffield Youth Cycling Club and a member of British Cycling, said she 'dreams of the day' city streets might look that way, and safe cycling could become second-nature for Sheffield.

The 76-year-old said: "It is scary to be out there as a cyclist. People think it's funny to lean out of their white vans and shout to make you jump as you ride by.

"I've had a driver hanging out of his window with a wrench threatening to throw it at me as I've cycled past Damflask. The aggravation that cycling versus motoring causes is just heartbreaking.

"In the Netherlands there are millions of bikes, and the cyclists ride along at the sides, protected, with cars going as well and trams and pedestrians.

"I know it's flatter there but it is just heaven to see everything working together. It would be wonderful if these images could become a reality in Sheffield, and there are lots of efforts going on and improvements being made."

The technology uses postcodes and GPS data to tap into images from Google Streetview and recreate them as car-free utopias. If an image is not yet available via Streetview, users can upload a photo of their own from their camera rolls.

Cycling is the second most common mode of transport in the Netherlands, with 36 per cent of Dutch people listing the bicycle as their most frequent way of getting around on a typical day.

The popularity of cycling is enabled by excellent cycling infrastructure such as cycle paths and tracks, lots of secure bike parking, and by making cycling routes shorter, more direct, and faster than car routes.

In Broomhill, a cyclist glides past blooming beds of wildflowers instead of through the rumble of buses and cars. On West Street and Broad Lane, gone are the clouds of exhaust fumes in favour of pedestrianised thorughfares enclosed by flowers.