Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Taking the high way

This is one way to get a bike path around the Nagykörút.
A radical approach to bike path development was circulating on social media a couple weeks ago: elevating bikeways above street level, thus solving the problem of lack of space.

The idea was first proposed for London. In this case, the bikeways would be built above rail lines, which snake all over London and would offer space for a comprehensive elevated cycling network. The Britsh rail operator even expressed support for the idea.

The expense would be huge -- hundreds of millions of pounds for just the first small section of the network. But London's mayor has promised to spend a billion pounds on cycling, and that created an opening. The idea is apparently getting official consideration.

The proposal was all over facebook and cycling blogs and it somehow caught the eye of the vice-mayor of Budapest's District XII. He posted about it on his blog, and from there, it ended up in the Hungarian edition of the Blikk news tabloid.

Although this idea probably doesn't have a prayer outside Photoshop, it does stir my imagination. Wouldn't it be great to ride all over the city on paths where you're literally priortised above motor traffic? No one could cut you off, door you, tailgate you, leave you in a cloud of fumes, or pass too close. You wouldn't even get honked at. In fact, from three or four metres up, cyclists would be in a better position to abuse motorists. I'm all for peaceful coexistence, but if that's not happening, I would definitely take this.

1 comment:

Jerome Simpson REC said...

Bicycle roundabout in the sky in the Netherlands, Hovenring (video)