In Oxfordshire, the council have introduced a lot of traffic calming measures, which invovle narrowing the road. The aim is to make cars slow down and therefore reduce the number of accidents. However, this particular design is a real pain for Cyclists. This is at the bottom of a steep hill running into Horspath, just outside the ring road. It means you have to come to a complete stop as cars are usually coming the other way. (You can see several cars behind). As an after thought there is supposed to be a cycle lane to the right of the bollard. But, as you can see, the cycle path is completely useless; certainly not something to be negotiated at 20mph.
I don’t know if you can see, but the path is all gravel. Making it impossible for a road bike. But, it is also so narrow and involves a sharp left turn, something you don’t want to do at 25mph.
I am not opposed to slowing down traffic; evidence suggests it does help to reduce fatalities. But, I wish planners would not completely ignore the cyclist. It would have been hard to design a cycle facility less useful; it could encourage cyclists to squeeze into the middle which would be dangerous.
Much better alternatives would have been to
- Make sure the path was straight, narrow, well maintained and wide.
- Use speed humps rather than narrowing road.
- Use speed cameras.
Leave a comment if you have any pictures of crazy bike lanes.
And if you want to see more, check out these crap bike lanes
Crap cycle lanes – facility of the month