Last edited 02 Jun 2021

Cycle path



[edit] Introduction

A cycle path (or cycling lane) is a section of roadway reserved for cyclists. These paths can also be used by electrically assisted pedal cycles (EAPCs) that comply with the electric bikes section of the Highway Code.

Cycle paths are designed to improve access for cyclists. Ideally, they can also promote cycling by providing a safe and pleasant experience.

[edit] Guidance

Guidance on cycle infrastructure design was published in October 2008, produced through a partnership of the Department for Transport, Scottish Executive and the Welsh Assembly. It includes detailed explanations of the suggested parameters for cycle path planning across the country.

Before incorporating cycle lanes into urban plans, it is important to consider whether or not a cycle lane is truly beneficial. It is essential to take things like bus lanes, narrow roads and complex junctions into consideration during this planning stage.

[edit] Specifications

The recommended width of a cycle path between two lanes of traffic is at least 2 metres if traffic is moving at speeds higher than 40 mph. This width allows cyclists to overtake each other when caution is exercised. Two-way cycle paths do exist, although they are not common.

On roads with 30 mph speed limits, the path must be at least 1.5 metres wide. When lanes are less than 1.2 metres wide, cyclists should not use child-carrying trailers or ride tricycles.

If possible, cycle paths should be made more obvious through the use of coloured surface treatments in addition to distinct road markings (such as white lines and pictograms) and signage.

[edit] Cycle path identification

Cycle paths are designated by markings to restrict motorised vehicles and inform pedestrians. Cyclists are not required to use these paths, although use of the paths is recommended.

Unless pavements are marked as shared spaces, they should not be used by cyclists. In this instance, pedestrians have right of way and cyclists must yield to them.

[edit] Off-road paths and other path types

Off-road cycle paths are typically shared by cyclists and pedestrians. Bridleways can also be used by cyclists, but cyclists must give way to users on foot or on horseback.

[edit] London cycling initiatives

In London, Cycleways (formerly known as Cycle Superhighways and Quietways) are being developed to connect communities, businesses and destinations across London in one cycle network. The goal of this initiative is to create 450 kilometres of Cycleways by 2024.

Three London boroughs, Enfield, Kingston and Waltham Forest, have been given additional funding to improve cycle access by 2021.

On 19 March 2020, the London Cycling Campaign released its Climate Safe Streets report. This report outlines the city's plans to improve access for cyclists by creating 'a high-quality cycling network' and reducing carbon emissions caused by traditional motorised vehicles.

[edit] Cycling to combat obesity initiative

On 27 July 2020, the Government announced plans to tackle obesity, which has been linked with complications that can occur in people who contract COVID-19. The Government's strategy includes encouraging exercise by making it safer and easier to cycle and walk in areas there are no suitable paths or facilities.

The initiative, which will cost £2bn, will include:


[edit] Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki

[edit] External references

Designing Buildings Anywhere

Get the Firefox add-on to access 20,000 definitions direct from any website

Find out more Accept cookies and
don't show me this again