Cycle lanes on the outside parked cars, a recipe for disaster

A couple of video’s of some new cycle lanes in Sheffield. These have been built in the past couple of weeks.

Let’s be honest, you’d have to be insane to think that this is even remotely safe.

This road has 6 lanes for driving, one for parking, 4 for driving along and one for turning. The people in charge have decided that the best place for people cycling is in-between parked cars, and traffic.

A much better place would be behind the parked cars, between the footpath and the parking bays. Why not do it like this?

Cycling in Utrecht
Cycling in Utrecht

We’re all taught to leave plenty of room when cycling past parked cars in case a door opens and you get knocked into the path of heavy traffic. But why are our roads even designed with this being a possibility? Swap the lanes around, put the cycle lane behind parked cars and this risk just goes away.

If a door opens you fall onto the pavement instead of in front of a truck. But it’s easier to avoid this and cycle further away because cycling away from car doors in this arrangement doesn’t mean cycling in the way of heavy traffic!

We need to start thinking differently, start making small changes and start to design our roads like this.

Cycling in Utrecht
Cycling in Utrecht
Cycling in Assen
Cycling in Assen

5 replies on “Cycle lanes on the outside parked cars, a recipe for disaster”

What and risk being sued for damaged paintwork?! Bike riders are much more easily fobbed off/expendable.

Well said just remember that car passengers have a nasty habit of opening doors to but at least you fall on the path.

In a just world, putting in those door-zone bike lanes would constitute a criminal offence.

In most other contexts, deliberately luring people into serious danger would fall under some law or other, surely? Why is this different?

Its akin to putting in an unlocked door to the lion enclosure at the zoo and marking it with a sign saying ‘this way to the gift shop’.

The problem is compounded by the way the courts repeatedly refuse to hold people to account for opening car doors without looking for cyclists, taking the view that ‘just an accident, these things happen, you can’t expect people to always look properly’.

At least your lanes are wide enough that you could cycle at the right-hand edge and avoid the worst of a dooring. Here in Bristol they are narrow and right up against the cars – an absolute invitation to be doored!

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