Driving On The Road: It Is A Matter Of Selfishness And Comfort

We not, that the sidewalk bike not going well. It is not circulating in comfort.

And I do not mean those pesky pedestrians who insist on walking around as his legitimate site. * It is a much simpler matter, speeds and paths.

You see, a bicycle, save it be Ruedin, ** requires a minimum speed to stay in balance, slightly higher than a pedestrian at a good pace. A eye, a pedestrian walk fast flowing around 6 km / h and a bike requires 8 Km / h minimum. It’s a matter of physics rather complicated to explain, but patent application: bike always go faster than pedestrians. If we move on “to pace”, as proposed by the former highway code, we will have to balance with the handlebars to not fall over .

And that talking about minimal: in town, a bicycle tour is done at about 15 km / h on average, counting stops, with peaks of 30 or even 40 km / h if caught a roll. These figures measured in Copenhagen, but do not differ much in the rest of the world. Recall that 56% of cyclists from there declare choose the bike speed, 37% for accommodation and 29% for savings, not ecology or other ethereal issues.

So when a route such projects, including things to keep in mind is that it can circulate useful and comfortable speeds.

Speeds project for track cycling trails as manual Catalonia

(Good) technical manuals help urban planners know this and recommend target speeds for design: for example, the manual of Catalonia recommended minimum of 30 km / h on tracks for the exclusive use of bicycles. And in turn, this design objective speed requires a smallest turning radii for curves.

A steep curve (small radius) must be at low speed; a more “open” (larger radius) may be faster. If we take a sharp bend at high speed, we will leave the road. They have a more detailed explanation in Numbers and keys (which also tell them about the spiral, a variable radius curve that is widely used in roads). Mobility technicians who do things well know this and plan *** paths pathways accordingly. At least in the roads and highways so: all sharp curves are indicators of maximum speed, and motorways have very strict requirements regarding minimum radius of the curves.

Proposed minimum radius curves in cycle routes, according manual Catalonia

But some technicians do not let them do things right, or not applied thoroughly with ways to bikes with spoke lights equipped with ComputerMinus, and sometimes get barbarities and then bungling that are not comfortable for cyclists.

“Bike lanes impregnable”, titled in the newspaper La Rioja. What has that curve radius S?

A bike runs comfortably at least 10 km / h, but bike lanes sometimes planted curves that require passing them to 5 km / h. Sometimes even require sidewalks bike, with the excuse that there are no abuses. It is absolutely insane and shows that who proposes that limit does not ride a bike, or not known as it should. Has anyone managed to ride a bike 5 km / h? It is much more difficult to go to 15, it is preferable to dismount and walk fast.

Thus, if the curves of the track are uncomfortable, the cycling track loses some of its usefulness, which is to allow the rider safe, comfortable, fast and without risking travel to other users. So many cyclists are opposed to the use of these routes is mandatory: because there are too many lanes with winding paths, and for when he gained experience with traffic, the user will prefer driving on the road using a path that forces you to go too slow.

On the sidewalks, obviously, no minimum radius requirement is contemplated. They are designed for pedestrians, who can change direction without taking up space. Therefore, as in a poorly designed cycle path, if one is traveling on the sidewalk bike curves will be forced to greatly reduce the speed find, so that you will find it uncomfortable.

On driveways, designed for vehicles, that problem does not arise. You can take curves too fast. Try it with caution, but do it.

People who do not go down to the road with the bike is facing these possibilities:

  • or circulates on the sidewalkat an uncomfortable speed for a bike and dodging pedestrians,
  • or circulates on the sidewalktoo quickly at the risk of upsetting of pedestrians,
  • or you have to put up with the bike paththat design will often suitable only for pedestrian speed.

In such circumstances, bike or a risk to pedestrians or is not using its potential saving time, and also is not as comfortable as it should. And what is worse, on the other hand: these bike “botched” lanes often steal space to the sidewalk, not the road.

Robar space sidewalks for something that is not comfortable and it ends up not used. Is not it better to do things right?

If you are planning a bike path in your city, please speeds account and drawn practical and realistic, please. Do not throw money in strange artifacts. If a good right path speed does not fit and requires steal space to the sidewalk, values other alternatives.

And if you are going to take the bike in the city, which is a great thing, ask your city decent lanes, and if you do not encourage yourself to go down the road, sure to note the difference in time. And the more we are in the road, the safer we.

If he does not dare to travel on the road the first day, which is normal, do not worry. Like when you learned to walk, a new way of getting around requires adaptation. Consider a period of learning, seek courses organized many municipalities, ask if there is any association in your town or city who can help. There are thousands of resources at your fingertips and a willing many people.

But please do not go you on the sidewalk. I will not ask only for respect for others (also): I recommend it for your own comfort.

(*) You will capture the ironies. I hope. That topic talk another day, if you need to talk more after commented on Vitoria.

(**) If you need training wheels for balance, probably not a good idea to run through the street alone. Do not be afraid: the practice will earn security. And if resorts to a training course, better: people are known and fun.

(***) And who let them do it right, that will influence political and budgetary much.

PS: Sevilla propose to reduce the maximum speed of bicycles to 15 Km / Hand not surprisingly their cyclists associations are opposed by “unworkable”. Well , I think they are right. It makes no sense.