One of the biggest motivations for transport choice is simply – which is fastest? When the train came along, you could suddenly travel from London to Bristol in four hours – rather than a couple of days travel by stage coach. No matter how much people complained about trains (and they did even in the glory days of GWR) if you can save that kind of time, it was a no-brainer. When the motor car came along, train travel slowly slipped away. Why waste time walking to station and waiting for a train. The car was simply quicker. The car also caused bicycle use to fall in most of western Europe.
The resurgence in bicycle use in some major European cities, is partly related to the fact that the speed difference between cars and bikes has narrowed as congestion has increased. With cities so congested with motor cars, people slowly realise that it might actually be quicker to go back to the bicycle.
In Oxford, a one-way system means that bicycles are often quicker than driving. Even if you cycle pretty slowly, it is still quicker by bike to pretty much any destination. As well as being quick, you can save money and save time looking for parking.
A study by Citreon suggested that the average speed of driving in London is just 7mph – that is with all the traffic lights. (link Bike Hub)
To put it into perspective, the average traffic speed is pretty much the same as 100 years ago with the horsedrawn carriage. [link]
For a one hour commute, in Cardiff, the average standstill time for a motorist is a 30 minutes, half of the one-hour commute time.
The Edinburgh transport minister warned that by 2026, traffic will be almost at a standstill – A 20 minute car journey could take an hour by 2026 unless something was done. BBC link
Interesting poster. Perhaps promoting the speed of cycling, would be a good way to encourage more people to cycle.
It is true too! There’s nothing better than cycling along a cycle path past stationary traffic!
Not sure the image of cyclists riding over car bonnets is entirely helpful for motorist / cyclist harmony.
- 10 Reasons to commute by bike
- Is cycling the best form of commuting?
- Best form of Commuting?
- Love Your Bike – origin of top ad FoE Manchester