Auckland should be the number one bike city in the world? Why? Because we have the most bike-friendly year-round climate. Now that ebike motors are here, the hills of Auckland mean nothing.
This page has been copied from the European Union's Presto Cycle Web Site. PRESTO (Promoting Cycling for Everyone as a Daily Transport Mode) is a project of the EU's Intelligent Energy – Europe Programme granted by the Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (EACI). Permission to reproduce is being sought from PRESTO at this time, and this web page is set up to show PRESTO what permission is being requested.
A cycle lane is a legally reserved driving space for cyclists on the road, visually separating them from traffic. It is recommended when significant numbers of cyclists drive along a moderately busy road. Cycle lanes are a visible, fast and flexible solution on existing roads, needing only road markings. A cycle lane can be an alternative for a cycle track when space is lacking, but only when safety can be sufficiently guaranteed.
A cycle track is the highest-quality cycling infrastructure, physically separating cyclists from traffic. It is needed along very busy and fast roads and on highly used cycling routes, as well as in recreative cycling networks, often away from roads. Cycle tracks attract and reassure inexperienced cyclists, but are also space consuming and relatively costly. They are very safe along stretches of road, but particularly dangerous at intersections.
A cycle street is a road so designed that cyclists dominate visually and motorized traffic is tolerated as a guest. The look like street-wide cycle track on which motorized traffic is allowed. Legally, a cycle street is a mixed traffic road. A cycle street can be considered on main cycling routes on local estate access roads.
On quiet, residential streets, road space can be safely and comfortably shared by all users, without any special provisions for cyclists or pedestrians. The road design must slow down the rare local traffic, by using narrow profiles, speed reducers or both. Such traffic-calming devices must be cycle-friendly in their design. Reduced traffic and local cycling links should be designed into new residential developments.
Contra-flow cycling is when cyclists are allowed to ride against the flow of one-way streets. This is a simple regulatory measure and highly attractive for cyclists. It creates shortcuts away from busier traffic. It has proven to be safe, even in the narrowest streets, when speeds are low and traffic quiet. Contra-flow cycling should be generalized city-wide: this way, they become a normal situation for all and cyclists benefit most.
Mixing bicycles and buses is a safety issue. Ideally, cycle routes should be created away from bus routes, but this is not always possible in dense urban areas. On 30 km/h roads bicycles and buses can safely mix, at higher speeds they should be separated. Bus/bike lanes can strengthen the network with additional shortcuts, but only at low speeds, on short stretches and with careful design to ensure safety. They should not be used as a way to avoid tough choices.
Cyclists and pedestrians mix easily. Their speeds are not so different and cyclists adapt their behavior. Cycling should be allowed in car-free zones. Mostly, this can be fully mixed, but a soft physical separation is preferred when there are many pedestrians. The benefits for cyclists are shortcut routes and comfortable access to destinations in the area. On narrow streets, adjacent or shared-use paths for cyclists and pedestrians can provide a safe and comfortable solution.
Traffic-light intersections are inherently dangerous for cyclists. However, they are indispensable when cyclists cross heavy traffic flows. Cycle-friendly design must make cyclists clearly visible, allow short and easy maneuvers and reduce waiting time, such as a right-turn bypass or an advanced stop-line. On main cycle links, separate cycle traffic light and cycle-friendly light regulation can privilege cycle flows over motorized traffic.
Simple one-lane roundabouts are the safest intersection type for all users and for cyclists on moderately busy roads. Larger and multi-lane roundabouts can be made cycle-friendly by adding physically separated tracks. The cycle track can be given right of way or not, but design must be adapted to the choice made. Existing tight roundabouts can be improved to favor cycling. See this video
Right-of-way mixed traffic is the simplest, most agreeable approach for cyclists on quiet intersections. Cyclists mix with motorized traffic to cross and turn left or right. If a priority road is concerned, special provisions can assist cyclists: traffic islands, bending in or out, turn lanes. When cyclists are on the priority road, design and signage should underline their status. Main network links should have priority at intersections.
Grade-separation for cyclists includes cycling tunnels and cycling bridges. These are safe and direct ways to cross barriers, such as very busy roads and intersections, waterways or railways. Tunnels are more comfortable for cycling, but bridges may be more attractive and are potential landmarks. High-quality design is needed to reduce the slope and improve objective and perceived safety.
Dispersed, small bicycle parking systems, such as inverted U-stands, allow cyclists to park and attach their bicycle for short periods and near their destination. More elaborate secured storage facilities, such as lockers or supervised storage, allow cyclists to store their bicycle safely for longer periods, at slightly larger distances to their destination. Available products range from inexpensive small parking devices to automated systems and supervision.
In residential areas, all residents should have safe overnight storage for a bicycle. This is crucial to encourage bicycle ownership and cycling. Sufficient bicycle storage should be standard in new housing, through negotiation or regulation. In older areas without indoor private storage, opportunities must be found for neighbourhood storage facilities, secured, shared and possibly co-managed by residents. Bicycle drums are practical small collective on-street lockers.
All cities serious about cycling should develop a strategy for bicycle parking in the city centre. A mix of dispersed small parking provision and large secure storage facilities will offer cyclists easy access to key urban destinations. Observation and needs analysis should determine locations, quantity and quality. As a result, this will attract more cyclists, improve the quality of public space and increase the city centre’s attractiveness.
Bicycle parking at train stations and metro, tram, light rail and bus stops encourage cyclists to make combined longer trips. Each type of stop needs a suitable mix of parking and storage to cater for various cyclists’ needs. This must be nearby and convenient for smooth interchange. Major train stations have huge cycling potential, and can be equipped as bicycle stations, including a range of additional bicycle services.