Segregated Provision

Traffic is the main reason people do not cycle
Image from Bristol Cycling Chic

Segregated provision for cyclists needs to be in place across the cycle network in order to make the network usable by everyone not just confident adult cyclists.

The current road network has segregated provision for pedestrians and motor traffic but not for cyclists. This forces cyclists to share provision not designed for them with these other groups.

Traffic is a major deterrent to cycling

Segregated provision is important because the main reason why people do not cycle is traffic.

The Understanding Walking and Cycling Report [pdf] states:

To summarise, from our analysis of the influence of the physical environment on cycling it is clear that traffic is a major deterrent for all but the most committed cyclists. Potential cyclists, recreational (off-road) cyclists and occasional cyclists are discouraged from using their bicycles for everyday urban journeys because of their fear of cars and heavy goods vehicles.

Also

it is essential that the urban environment is made safe for cyclists. This requires the provision of fully segregated cycle routes on all arterial and other busy roads in urban areas. It is clear from the research that most non-cyclists and recreational cyclists will only consider cycling regularly if they are segregated from traffic.

Image from As Easy As Riding A bike

Therefore the routes on the cycle network should follow these principles:

  • Provide segregated space on all routes where the traffic speed is over 30mph, inc. main roads between Ely and the surrounding villages and towns. (e.g. A142 to Sutton).
  • Provide segregated space on main routes across Ely and through the surrounding towns and villages (e.g. Back Hill, Ely and Main St. L. Downham).
  • Reduce speed and/or restrict motor traffic on other routes (One way streets, no through roads for motor traffic etc.) (e.g. Church Lane, Ely).
  • Make cycle journeys connected and unhindered (not giving way to side streets, no “cyclists dismount” points, allow cyclists to navigate major junctions etc).

Segregation

Image from As Easy As Riding A Bike

Currently cyclists have to share space with either large fast moving traffic on the carriageway or pedestrians on shared use pavements and paths.

For cycling to become a popular and common mode of transport segregated cycle lanes need to be created which:

  • Are physically segregated* from motor traffic and pedestrians.
  • Do not require cyclists to give way at side streets.
  • Do not place cyclists in danger (for example in the ‘door zone**‘).
  • Have junctions designed with the cycle lanes taken into account.
  • Do not require cyclists to dismount.
  • Give cyclists a safe and convenient method to navigate major junctions.

Space should be created for segregated cycle lanes by removing space for motor traffic where necessary.

Image from Hembrow Cycling Holidays

Traffic reduction

On quieter side streets where segregated lanes may not be possible motor traffic needs to be controlled and restricted so that these streets are safe for cyclists. There are several approaches that could be used including:

  • Reducing the speed limit to 20mph or less.
  • Blocking roads to through motor traffic while allowing cyclists and pedestrians to pass.
  • Removing or repositioning on street parking.
  • Removing centre lines and marking out cycle lanes instead.

Examples

Key
Current provision
Example of current provision with on-road marked off lane and on-street parking (loosely based on Cambridge Road)

  • no physical separation
  • cycle lane stops at crucial point
  • cyclists are forced the cycle in the ‘door zone**
Segregated provision
1-way cycle lane on each side of the road
1-way cycle lane on each side of the road with side street

  • side street gives way to cycle lane
  • side street has tight corners not sweeping ones to force traffic turning in to slow down
  • cycle lane on opposite side has space for cyclists to wait in safety to cross into side street.
1-way cycle lane on each side of the road with on-street parking

  • on-street parking is placed between the cycle lane and the carriageway to avoid the  ‘door zone**‘ problem
2-way cycle lane on one side of the road
2-way shared use cycle lane on one side of the road

  • only suitable where there are few pedestrians and longer distances (as a more economic alternative)
  • may be more suitable for longer distance cycle lanes along A-roads
Complex junction with 2-way cycle lane designed in (loosely based on Back Hill / Broad Street)

  • separate lights control the traffic on the carriageway, the cycle lane and pedestrians
  • light on the cycle lane triggered by cyclist’s approach like those on the carriageway
  • cyclists safely cross the carriageway
  • carriageway space removed to create space for cycle lane
  • pedestrians have own crossing
Roundabout with 2-way cycle lane crossing it. (loosely based on A10 roundabout with Witchford Road)

  • cycle lane crosses at point away from roundabout to allow cars to leave the roundabout and stop
  • cycle lane crossing controlled with lights
Traffic Restriction
Smaller side road with centre line removed and cycle lanes marked
Smaller side road blocked to through traffic but allowing cycle traffic

Notes

*Physical separation can be achieved in several ways, for example:

  • Change of height – raised cycle lane with a kerb
  • Grass verge
  • Bollards

White painted lanes on the carriageway or coloured tarmac do not qualify.

** The ‘door zone’ refers to the space running along a row of parked cars where drivers open their doors without checking causing cyclists to get knocked off, to veer out of the way or ride into them.

One thought on “Segregated Provision

  1. marknokkert

    Very helpful diagrams, thanks for this. I agree with all of the above.

    But, at the other hand, we have to be realistic, and that full segregation may not be achievable for many places, because of financial reasons or space limitations. I personally can forsee that it may be politically much easier to persuade people for the ‘Removing centre lines and marking out cycle lanes instead’ options which, especially when combined with a 20 zone, are very effective in reducing overall car speed, increasing car drivers’ awareness skils, and providing the much-needed safety feeling for cyclists. A great number of suburban roads in cities and towns in The Netherlands have these, either with or without a central white line.

    Yes, for the main through-roads a full segregation would be ideal. What would be useful is to have a consensus on which roads we are talking about: could these be given a separate colour on the cycle network map?