Space for cycling in new developments

By Tony Russell,
children cycling on a bike path in a new development

Providing adequate space for cycling is an essential aspect of effective design, and in new developments it should be possible to provide dedicated space for cycling on those streets carrying most traffic.

New developments and regeneration schemes offer an opportunity to provide networks of high quality infrastructure that encourage cycling, which can rarely be achieved when retrofitting provision in existing, often constrained, urban areas.

Such infrastructure should be suitable for cyclists of varying levels of ability and speeds of cycling, with separation from traffic appropriate to the location. And consideration needs to be given to movements through the site as well as connectivity between the site and the surrounding area.

A new draft chapter of our Cycle Friendly Deign Manual covers cycling in new developments.

Opportunities should be taken to include filtered permeability, which provides more direct and convenient routes for walking, cycling and public transport, compared with the equivalent journey by car. These can include traffic free links and bus gates, as well as exemptions from one way streets and turning restrictions.

In achieving this, key considerations will include:

  • providing space for cyclists away from traffic
  • minimising interactions with pedestrians
  • layout of car parking
  • designing for low traffic speeds
  • continuity at road crossings, junctions and bus stops

In addition, storing your bike at each end of a journey is a fundamental requirement, and new developments offer the opportunity to ensure that adequate provision is made for this, and even changing facilities.

Sustrans is inviting views from transport, planning and engineering professionals on its Cycle-friendly design manual, which is made up of chapters including one on Cycling in new developments, and which aims to inform best practice on road design, complementing our Handbook for cycle-friendly design.

Sustrans is inviting views from transport, planning and engineering professionals on its Cycle-friendly design manual and Handbook for cycle-friendly design, which aim to inform best practice on road design.

The consultation process will close on 30 June 2015.

Constructive feedback on the new documents can be submitted to our design and construction team.