A Conversation for Is It Safe to Cycle?

Better cycle lanes would mean better cycling

Post 1

Richard Holmes

Despite the recent rise in cycling, there were actually far more people cycling in the 1970's than there are today. Many children cycled quite long distances to school back then (without helmets). That's one reason why we had less childhood obesity back then. There were more cycle stands at stations as well. Plus, there were a lot less cars on the road.

One reason why cyclists don't follow traffic rules is that is actually not practically possible to do so any more, because the road system in urban areas is built to maximise the number of cars on the road, to the exclusion of everything else. Since one car takes up the space of about 4 bicyles, this is not an efficient use of our limited road space, but that is none the less what has happened. It's all part of our insane transport system which fails to get people and goods from A to B in a cheap and efficient manner.

It's a no-brainer that we need to get people cycling again; the reasons are numerous: less congestion, better for the environment, better for the economy, better for our health, better for car drivers, better for cyclists, better for everyone! So why aren't we doing anything about it (I mean REALLY doing something about it like they do in Denmark and Holland)?

I remember the documentary when Michael Palin went to Beijing in the early 1990's and looked at the rows and rows of bicycles heading down the main strip. He wondered what would happen when all those bicycles turn into cars. Well if you ask anyone who's tried driving in China recently, they'll tell you: the result is the death trap that is China's traffic.

We need to recognise that we been going in the wrong direction on transport policy for about 25 years, and we need to switch into reverse gear and get back to cycling again.

Better cycle lanes would mean better cycling

Post 2


I agree. I am lucky to have been cycling for many years and am therefore a confident cyclist. However, I think many people are reluctant to try cycling because the roads are so congested and motorists aren't always very patient when faced with slow moving cyclists. Cycle lanes that are properly planned will help. However, many cycles lanes are lethal, particularly those around roundabouts (see the thread about roundabouts...)

Key: Complain about this post

Better cycle lanes would mean better cycling

Write an Entry

"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a wholly remarkable book. It has been compiled and recompiled many times and under many different editorships. It contains contributions from countless numbers of travellers and researchers."

Write an entry
Read more