Many roads lead from Ottobrunn to Unterhaching. The fastest connection is about 2 km long. It starts at Unterhachinger Str. in Ottobrunn and continues to Ottobrunner Str. on the Unterhaching roundabout. You go straight from east to west, and on the southern side of the street, there is a (my) cycle path.

I have been lived in Ottobrunn/Riemerling since 1990. Since 1992, when InterFace AG moved into the newly built offices in Unterhaching, I have regularly taken this route. It used to be a ride through beautiful countryside. The seasons changed as sunshine replaced rain, or wind was substituted by frost. When a southerly wind blew, the Alps seemed so near you thought you could touch them. The fresh air cleared the head. Next to the lonely rider on his bike, the cars put a slight damper on the idyll, but at least the traffic ran smoothly.

Now this has changed.

Both small and luxurious cars come with masses of fantastic extra equipment such as automatic regulation of distance to the car in front and lights that move as you steer. But none of them has an integrated rubbish bin, so their waste accumulates at the side of the street: bottles and tins, the remains of fast food, cigarette and medicine packing (once, I even saw an empty Viagra box), all kinds of domestic rubbish and whatever else is considered undesirable inside a car. And each day there is a new addition. – which often reminds me of my beautiful vacation with Barbara in Greece back in 1972, when we went through Yugoslavia by car. In those days, we were upset about all the rubbish lying by the side of the streets.

As you arrive in Unterhaching, there is a chemist to your left and the inevitable discounter, both with enormous parking places. On the opposite side, you will find all the places absolutely necessary for survival, such as a solarium, a bakery and a pizza service. To me, everything looks a little American.

The street itself, has been considerably widened. The same is true for the bridge under the Ramersdorf to Salzburg motorway. Increasingly, there is a real traffic jam during the rush hour. Formerly, when I used my car, it took me about half the time of a bike ride to Unterhaching, whereas now my bike is clearly the winner in that competition, because:

Four (!) sizable newly installed sets of traffic lights now stop the cars repeatedly during those two kilometres!


P.S. 1

Installing a new set of traffic lights, including earthworks, costs between 10,000 and 250,000 Euros, depending whether we are talking about a pedestrians crossing or a really big crossroads.

When installed, a set of traffic lights needs the following upkeep (in Euros per year).

The maintenance of a complete set of traffic lights (dependant on its size) costs between 800 and 5,000 Euros (the crew calculates 1,000 Euros as an average per set of 3 lights).

Powering a set of traffic lights (also dependant on its size) costs between 350 and 4,000 Euros.

New lamps inside the individual signals can be estimated at around 1,000 to 1,500 Euros for the 3 lamps.

Source: Cologne city council.

P.S. 2

Here is an extra service for car-drivers:

Be careful when driving from Unterhaching back to Ottobrunn. The police know that many drivers like to “hop” traffic lights, accelerating massively between any two sets of lights. So they often set up a radar trap near the Unterhaching exit. Look behind the cemetery, shortly before the entrance to the tennis club if you want to avoid being asked to make a generous, involuntary contribution to the maintenance costs of all those traffic lights.

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