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Cyclist visibility and the Highway Code

Cyclist visibility and the Highway Code

On the face of it, wearing ‘hi vis’ clothing seems like sound judgement for cyclists. Although the Highway Code advises cyclists to wear hi vis clothing, it is not a legal requirement. In the event of an accident, however, you could still be held liable in court if your outfit was not conspicuous.

The Highway Code and the law

The Code was a provision of the first road traffic legislation introduced in 1930. With a focus on road safety, the Code has remained on the bestseller list since its introduction.

The Code is a mixture of law and advice. Where the Code cites a law, it will explicitly state that a cyclist ‘must’ or ‘must not’ observe a given rule. The specific legislation that the rule relates to will also be referenced.

If the rule is advisory but not legally enforceable, then it is written in less prescriptive terms, such as “you should …” or “… not compulsory but can make your journey safer.”

Cyclist visibility and the Code.

Cyclist clothing is addressed by Rule 59 of the Code. Rule 59 is advice, not law. In respect of clothing, the rule states that cyclists:

“Should wear light-coloured or fluorescent clothing which helps other road users to see you in daylight and poor light… [and] reflective clothing and/or accessories (belt, arm or ankle bands) in the dark.”

Visibility at night is addressed by Rule 60. Rule 60 is law, and mandates the use of lighting and reflectors. Rule 60 does not address clothing.

At first glance it would appear that you can wear whatever clothing you want, without there being any legal implications.

However, there are differences in the way that criminal and civil law work in practice. Although you won’t be stopped by the police for wearing dark clothes, you could still be found liable for an accident if your clothing was not deemed suitably conspicuous.

If I didn’t break the law, how can I be held liable?

If you break a law you could be fined up to £2,500 in the case of dangerous cycling. The Code includes information about cycling penalties here.

According to the Road Traffic Act 1988, however:

“A failure on the part of a person to observe a provision of the Highway Code shall not of itself render that person liable to criminal proceedings of any kind but any such failure may… be relied upon by any party to the proceedings as tending to establish or negative any liability which is in question in those proceedings.”

This means that although you won’t be prosecuted for breaking an advisory rule, the breach can still be used in a civil case to establish your liability for an incident.

Liability as a claimant

If you were knocked off your bike by a driver pulling out in front of you in the daytime, the driver’s liability for the accident might seem obvious. However, most roads are a shade of grey/black. If you were wearing a black outfit, the driver could argue that you were hard to see.

Similarly, if the accident occurred at twilight or in the reduced light of a tunnel, a court might reason that you were not very visible.

This defence, known as ‘contributory negligence’, effectively apportions some of the blame on to the cyclist. As such, the level of compensation the cyclist receives would be reduced in line with the apportionment of blame.

If you were to make a cycling injury claim against a driver, for example, a breach of Rule 59 could be used as a defence by the defendant.

Liability as a defendant

If your actions as a cyclist resulted in another road user being injured, you could find yourself in court as a defendant.

If you collided with a pedestrian stepping into your path, the pedestrian could argue that you were hard to see based on your outfit. In this example, you might be held liable, or partially liable, for the pedestrian’s injuries. This scenario may be covered under your house insurance, or membership of various cycling associations, but if not you might have to pay compensation to the pedestrian from your own pocket.

So I should always wear hi vis clothing?

Not necessarily. What matters is the contrast you make with your background. A study carried out in 2010 concluded that there was a 90% increase in the recognisability of cyclists in hi vis clothing when compared with dark or black outfits.

It is worth mentioning that in the experiment, cyclists also wore ankle and knee reflectors. Drivers identified the cyclists’ ‘biomotion’, commenting on the fact that they could see the cyclist’s legs were moving.

Weather is also an important factor. Some hi vis yellow material can actually be harder to see in the fog. The fluorescent properties of hi vis material only work when there’s sufficient natural light.

The reflective strips found on hi vis clothing will reflect the light from a car’s headlamp back at the source. However, some reflective materials diffuse light in all directions. You may think your hi vis vest is making you stand out, when in fact it is acting as camouflage.

The trick is getting the right combination of colours and equipment, to make sure that you stand out from the background during your ride.

Legal representation

If you are injured in a cycling accident and another road user was to blame, you might consider making a claim for compensation. Most people contact a solicitor offering no win, no fee representation.

A legal claim for compensation can be complex. Some cases can take years to conclude. As the solicitor won’t get paid if they lose, they probably won’t be interested in your case unless they believe they have a better than 50% chance of winning.

If doubt exists over your visibility to the other road user, your case would be more marginal. You may have difficulty finding a solicitor to represent you. Self-financing a claim is rare as both the cost and risk of losing would be prohibitive for most.

You could be knocked off your bike and injured whilst fully complying with the law, and still find yourself unable to get legal representation.

In summary

Hi vis clothing is divisive and many cyclists dispute its efficacy. Rule 59 of the Highway Code may only be guidance, but to ignore the underlying point is risky.

It’s obvious that being less visible on the road increases the risk of accident and injury. However, many cyclists are unaware that, should an accident occur, being less visible could also deny you legal representation.

Whether or not you choose to wear high vis, the new generation of LED lights are highly visible in the day. It’s hard to see any downside to taking this extra precautionary step.

Chris Salmon

Chris Salmon is a co-founder and Director of Quittance Legal Services and a keen cyclist. Chris is a regular commentator in the legal press.

Larger cycle parking space dimensions

Larger, adapted and cargo bicycles are growing in popularity across the UK, the Turvec team tested a number of electric cargo bikes at the Modeshift Conference in Leicester in November last year. As outlined within our cycle parking guide, it is important to ensure cycle parking provides options for all bike types and sizes, various cycle parking requirements are requesting growing provision of spaces to be classified as suitable for larger or accessible cycles. 

A non-standard or larger bicycle can generally be secured using a Sheffield stand positioned with the correct spacing as outlined below. Turvec recommends specifying a suitable Sheffield stand with central tapping bar to accommodate locking lower to the ground if required. Stands that are longer than the usual 750mm and increased to around 900mm are more accessible to larger bicycle designs. A larger bicycle could be classified as any of the below:

Cargo bike – 850-900mm x 2000-2200mm. 

Cargo or freight bicycles are designed to transport goods or passengers. The storage is incorporated within the bicycle itself, usually in front of the rider. 

Recumbent bike – 750mm x 2000-2200mm.

A recumbent bike positions a rider in a laid-back position, spreading a rider’s weight over a larger area. 

Hand cycle – 750mm x 1650-1800mm. 

This is a bicycle that is powered by a cyclist’s arms rather than legs.

Bicycle with trailer – 850mm x 2500mm.

This is space for a standard bicycle that carries a trailer, either for passengers or freight. 

Tandem bikes – 750mm x 2500mm.

A tandem bike is where one cyclist rides behind another. 

Side-by-side tandem – 1000mm x 1800mm. 

This is a bicycle where one cyclist rides sitting next to the other on a single bicycle/trike.

See our cycle parking guide for further details on standard bicycle sizes and required dimensions. 

Turvec COVID-19 Statement 24.03.20

Our main priority at Turvec is the health and wellbeing of our staff, customers, supply chain and stakeholders. 

We are fortunately set-up in a way which allows us to work from home with no limitations on our day-to-day activities. Our office based staff have been working remotely since Tuesday 10th of March. 

Our site teams are complying with our social distancing policy and the evolving UK Government Guidelines. The situation is reviewed daily.

We are closely monitoring our supply chain and stock levels for any upcoming disruptions, this situation is being reviewed on a daily basis. 

Our goal is to open clear and frequent lines of communication with our clients if a project is likely to be impacted by any disruption.

If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact us on info@turvec.com or 0800 246 5484.

We Have Moved!

At the start of January 2020 we moved from our old home on Cannon Street to 20 Farringdon Street. After nearly 3 years in 33 Cannon Street we outgrew our space and look forward to exploring our new location. For reference our new address for all meetings and post is:

Turvec Solutions, 3rd Floor,

20 Farringdon Street,

London, EC4A 4BL

Shard Place Cycle Parking

Shard Place is a 26 storey residential tower being constructed next to The Shard. Constructed by MACE the building will comprise of 176 units with 212 Turvec 2ParkUp two-tier bike spaces with gas-lifting, we are additionally installing accessible parking in the form of conventional Sheffield stands. Turvec are delivering this project in 2020.

 

 

Where Will Londoners Park Their New E-Bikes?

In June of this year, Michael Ellis, Cycling Minister, announced that the government was introducing a new incentive to help cyclists with a “green commute initiative“. This initiative has seen the government refresh its cycle to work scheme – the effort will now include e-bikes, which is excellent news for the peddling commuter. As part of the scheme update, the original £1,000 cap has been removed to allow commuters to purchase a new bicycle and accessories more comfortably.

The growth of e-cycles is not to be underestimated with 70,000 models being sold int the UK last year. We covered the increase in electric bikes earlier in the year with some notable factors being that a survey of 2,000 commuters (undertaken by Evans Cycles) estimated that by switching from public transport to e-bikes, travellers could save over £7,500 across five years.

Micheal Ellis stated that “making sure that bikes are easily available is crucial to helping more people make the switch to greener modes of transport. Ensuring people of all abilities and fitness levels can cycle together is a vital part of this.

“I want everyone to feel empowered to make cycling a part of their everyday lives, and our refreshed guidance provides many incentives to help people do this.”

The government is set to invest around £2 billion on active travel as part of their new Cycling and walking investment strategy. This doubles their spending per head in comparison to their last spending review.

The initiative is excellent as it looks to continue to reduce pollution and increase activity in the daily commuter’s life, at least within the inner boroughs of London. It is very true that cycling the commute to work will:

  • help reach fitness goals
  • allow commuters to arrive at work feeling more energised and ready for the day
  • save money on fuel, parking and other commuting costs.

All this is well and good, but only if there is ample secure space for commuters to lock and leave their bike; making sure a new bike does not become the victim of theft will be a real concern for new and existing green commuters.

Cycle security is hugely important and not to be neglected. While introducing new incentives to get more of us on a “green commute”, is excellent, the fear of cycle theft is ever-present. Laura Laker, writing for The Guardian, recently pointed out how 96,210 bikes were reported as stolen across the UK in 2018. Of those, a mere 3% are recovered. TfL says that every year, 20,000 bikes are reported stolen (in London). You can find their tips to avoid bicycle theft on their website. And, 25 per cent of people who currently cycle, and 22 per cent of those who don’t are put off cycling in London for fear of cycle theft. The same report tells us that more than half of Londoners are deterred by lack of cycle parking.

James Brown, MD of national cycle database BikeRegister, which is used by all UK Police Forces to check for stolen bikes, said:

“With their higher price tag, e-bikes are a particularly attractive option to thieves, who steal the whole bike or unsecured parts and accessories. What we can offer as a deterrent to e-bike theft is bike registration and marking. Registering on BikeRegister is free and means you could be reunited with your bike in the event of it being stolen. It does not, however, help make your bike a hard target to thieves. To reduce the chances of becoming a victim of cycle theft, we also recommend using one of our marking kits to further safeguard properly against theft. A marked bike is a proven deterrent to thieves and makes it much more difficult to sell on. Ultimately, it’s been far too easy for bike thieves for a very long time, and we need to push for e-bike retailers to introduce Point of Sale bike marking to protect more bike owners from the outset.”

As suggested by James, in this case, the best offence is a good defence – whether that be increased parking or a marked cycle – preferably both. As a cycle security and storage expert, of course, we are biased, but what initiatives are there to include the uptake of further cycle storage in London?

What Cycle Security is There in Place?

TfL has been working on a Cycling Infrastructure Database that is accessible via the London Datastore. At the time of writing this article, the database has been available to the public for three months, and it sheds light on the following figures:

  • As of 2018, there were 145,449 cycle parking spaces on London streets. These were across 23,691 locations.
  • Inner London has a significantly higher proportion of these spaces.
  • There are 21,000 cycle hire spaces across 785 docking stations for those who wish to pay for their parking.
  • Residential cycle parking has increased to over 7,000 spaces in around 1,200 cycle hangers.

However, with 730,000 bicycle journeys being made in London per day, in 2016, it’s hard to believe that there is anywhere near enough the cycle storage available for these commuters in 2019. If we added up every form of available parking reported by the above figures supplied by TfL, there were still four times the number of commuters in 2016 than there are available spaces in 2019. TfL does point out that the figures do not account for other cycle parking such as workplaces, educational institutions or residential buildings. Yet, the London Travel Demand Survey revealed that over three million people own at least one bicycle in the city.

These figures show that there is a lot of work to do for TfL to ensure these journeys all begin and end in ample security, so what work are they doing?

Cyclist Safety Appears to Be Important

Newly implemented segregated lanes, as well as well-designed cycle junctions, have helped get more Londoners on their bikes. Statistics from TfL show that new routes have attracted new cyclists. In recent years the government has done plenty of good work in introducing new Cycle Superways and Quietways to London’s roads. Yet, in the same 2018 report, it was noted that “cycle parking remains a problem and needs to be addressed… cycle parking at train stations is particularly important.” From this perspective, it seems clear that the majority of the government’s efforts, at least for 2018, was going into cycle routes and connectivity. This is all well and good, but, having their cycle or e-cycle there at the end of the working, school or leisure filled day, should be just as crucial as ensuring that the commuter has somewhere safe to ride it.

What Is Being Done to Ensure our Cycle’s Safety?

In delivering the Mayor’s latest transport strategy effectively, 80 per cent of all trips (within London) are to be made by foot, cycle or public transport by 2041. An ambitious target that certainly will need to have safety and security at the heart of it; which the strategy comments on. TfL estimates that a further 36,000 on-street cycle parking spaces are required with a further increase of 12,000 spaces by 2025.

To achieve this, the government plans to tackle six main areas:

  • transport hubs
  • town centres
  • residential areas
  • educational institutions
  • workplaces
  • community destinations

There are existing resources that will help commuters find somewhere to lock their bike or e-bike securely, like Urban Cycle Parking’s map. TfL also lists cycling hubs that exist in Finsbury Park and the City of London, however, the list does seem sparse.

The Future of Transport Hub Cycle Parking 

The goal here for TfL is to provide a parking benchmark for all stations outside of zone 1. This comprises of a minimum of twenty cycle parking spaces within the fifty meters of the station.

They will have to work alongside various institutions to get this in motion; governing bodies such as boroughs, TOCs, Network Rail and Santander Cycles.

These plans also outline the need to consider cycle storage in the building of any new stations.

The Future of Town Centre Cycle Parking 

The plans outline working closely with boroughs here to provide more visitor parking for cyclists. Also, it is proposed that by reallocating car parking spaces to cycle parking, it will also aid London’s lack of road space.

The Future of Residential Area Cycle Parking 

Within the first year of this plan being release, TfL have forecasted the provision of 1,400 new residential cycle parking spaces. Moving beyond this, it proposes working further with boroughs to accelerate future delivery.

The Future of Educational Institution Cycle Parking 

If a school was part of the TfL’s school travel programme (STARS), new cycle parking is being planned for 80 institutions within the first year.

For university campuses and colleges, it’s a little sparser. There are plans to work with local boroughs to install more cycle parking, with sight to implementing this for two universities within the first year.

The Future of Workplace Cycle Parking 

For workplaces, the plans talk of providing support for London employers to enable them to further invest in cycle parking. The proposals talk about “making it simple and cost-efficient”, but don’t specifically talk about projected costs or grants.

It also, like with the above transport hubs, talks of having new project plans include cycle storage, such as two-tier bike racks, during their conception phase.

The Future of Community Destination Cycle Parking  

For sports facilities, community centres, hospitals, surgeries, places of worship, libraries, museums and galleries, it’s a similar story. Plans outline working with boroughs to deliver further parking. To do this, it proposes engaging with major stakeholders such as NHS and Royal Parks to improve these facilities.

Is All of This Enough? 

To say that cycle security and storage is not being thought about would not be accurate. It does seem apparent though, that with new initiatives such as this, the e-bike being added to the Cycle to Work Scheme, the figures just do not seem to add up. The 48,000 extra spaces by 2024, does not seem to be anywhere near enough spaces to meet with the governments green commuting targets.

LCC echoes these thoughts in their article where they note that the Mayor has a target of doubling cycle trips by 2026 from 720,000 to 1.5m and there is no way that the extra spaces allocated will be enough.

It seems clear that for commuters to feel that their new e-bike or existing cycle will be safely locked and secured, there needs to be some more thought put into the figure of spaces provided.

 

Brentford Community Stadium

Turvec have been contracted to install the external cycle parking at Brentford Community Stadium. We have designed WaveUp shelters to accommodate 186 2ParkUp two-tier spaces in the public realm. Located at Kew Bridge station the development includes 910 apartments and a new 17,500 seater stadium for Brentford Football Club.

Which Political Parties Are Backing Cyclists?

With December’s election looming, there has been plenty for politicians to consider within their campaigns and their manifestos. For us, the election pledges around cycling and cyclists, unsurprisingly, are very important. And, while the environment and pollution are increasingly becoming an uncompromising concern for both the public and parties, cycling is a surefire way of reducing pollution and as an effect, increase the happiness and fitness in its uptakers.

With transport – especially in London – participating in high pollution rates, and a higher share in omissions than any other sector, cycling as a healthy alternative must be considered. With this in mind, it is unsurprising that we have seen political parties rally around the idea – some a little more fresh to the concept than others. If you are a voter who is concerned about which party is going to benefit cyclists the most, then we have got a rundown of each of the main parties and their pledges. If you are looking for something more locally based, why not try CyclingUK’s candidate pledge checker? It gives you a way of asking your local candidates to stand up for cyclists. 

Below, you’ll find a summary of each party’s pledges.

Conservatives

The Conservatives are pledging:

  • £350mil cycling infrastructure pledge over five years (£70mil per year)
  • To enforce “tough new design standards” for infrastructure
  • To offer Bikeability training for every primary school child
  • To work towards low-traffic “healthy neighbourhoods”
  • To introduce separated bike lanes on main roads
  • To incentivise GPs to prescribe cycling and bicycles, and £2bn towards the pothole fund.

Labour

Labour are pledging:

  • £7.2bn per year investment
  • 3,100 miles of cycleways to be delivered within their first term
  • To provide safe cycling and walking routes to 10,000 primary schools
  • £200 e-bike grants to be made available with hints towards funding support for an “e-bike valley” industrial development
  • To double Bikeability funding to cover all primary school children, secondary school children and adults
  • To back and contribute towards the 2025 biking and walking strategy, and
  • To incentivise GPs to prescribe cycling and bicycles.

Green Party

The Green Party are pledging:

  • £2.5bn a year pledged to cycling and walking over ten years – that would consist of £2bn towards infrastructure and £.5bn for other related measures such as cycle training
  • To work towards the goal of having half of all local (five-mile) trips to be made either by foot or by bike within a decade
  • To provide an “expert body for governance and advice” will support local authority to deliver funds to only high-quality cycle infrastructure
  • To incentivise low traffic neighbourhoods
    commitment to new housing to be served by quality walking, cycling and public transport routes
  • To introduce car-free national park access and car-free city centres.

Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats are pledging:

  • 10 per cent of the transport budget to go towards cycling and walking by the end of five years
  • To give more power to local authorities to make decisions
  • To develop a national strategy to promote cycling and walking
  • The creation of dedicated “safe-cycle” lanes, and to encourage cycling and walking.

Brexit Party

The Brexit Party have not yet released any official pledge towards cycling and walking.

If you’re looking for a more comprehensive rundown of each party’s offering with analysis, Laura Laker discusses each party’s pledge in her article: which party’s general election pledges are best for cyclists?

Considerations for voters

Each party is offering something different, and while some have very expansive and detailed plans in regards to cycling and walking, the budget proposed may be a little too hopeful. There is no doubt, the higher the available budget put towards the sector, the better the results have to potential to be. Still, considering the last government fell short of their targets by two-thirds, due to lack of funding, we should not get too carried away.

Another thing to consider is the lack of experience that, in the vast majority of cases, local authorities have when it comes to quality cycle infrastructure. Cycle security such as cycling hubs and two-tier bike racks, or perhaps an increasing demand for electric bike charging stations will undoubtedly rise should policy lead more people to take to the streets on their bicycles. Currently, they are ill-equipped to deal with increased demand, and would more than likely struggle to get started, even if they were handed a higher budget; they need experts. Policies that revolve around getting experts into local authority are welcomed, but finding the personnel and the budget for this has been something past governments have fallen short of. 

Investing in cycling and walking will lead to innovation

If there is one thing we are confident of, it is that by investing more into greener transport, such as cycling and walking, innovation will be a by-product. We should stop seeing electric cars as the only solution to our transport and pollution issues, and start looking at better – manual – ways of travel. Not only will this go to reduce congestion further, but it will reduce the accident, injury and fatality rate on our roads (especially within cities).

With investment also going into making cycling more accessible to everyone, with more investment moving towards e-bikes and adult cycling training – we should see an uplift in easy ways to travel without filling up with petrol each time. If these parties are to stick to their pledges and follow through with their proposed budgets, the future of walking and cycling could really be revolutionised, and fascinating.

What are the Main Dos and Don’ts of City Cycling?

If you live in the city and want to start cycling, you may be weighing the rewards against the risks. Of course, there is a risk of injury any time you cycle, but city cycling often gets a bad reputation, what with the higher number of cars, lorries and pedestrians to deal with.

However, cycling in London is actually statistically very safe, as long as you follow the rules. So, with that being said, what are the main dos and don’ts of city cycling?

Know where you can and can’t cycle 

Knowing where you can and can’t cycle in the city is one of the main ways of reducing the risks of collisions.

Pavements are for pedestrians only, unless they’re marked for use by cyclists.

If you do happen to be cycling on the pavement and have a collision with a pedestrian, you will always be liable (even if it was the pedestrian’s fault) because you shouldn’t have been riding on the pavement in the first place. This is also a reason why all cyclists should have cycle insurance, especially if you’re going to be cycling in the city regularly.

In London especially, the creation of many new cycle lanes means there are often designated routes for cyclists to utilise.

If you’re riding in a segregated lane shared by cyclists and pedestrians, ensure you stick to the side intended for cyclists. Also, remember to be considerate of other lane users, especially older adults, disabled people and young children.

Be vigilant when it comes to other vehicles

Although most motorists are accommodating of cyclists, it’s still vital that you keep your wits about you when it comes to other vehicles.

Just like when you’re driving, signalling clearly and correctly is the best way to warn other road users of your intentions.

Learning the necessary hand signals (arm extended right for turning right and left for turning left) is an excellent way to ensure both your own and other motorists’ safety.

Always leave extra space for lorries and parked cars, and take care when passing lorries on the left-hand side. Due to their larger blind spot, they may not be able to see you, so you should always assume that they can’t, to be on the safe side.

Also, remember to take your time when crossing tramway tracks. You should also always come off and push your bike at level crossings if a ‘cyclist dismount’ sign is displayed.

Get the right gear 

Even if you’re cycling on your commute, that isn’t an excuse to not be wearing the right gear. If it’s wintertime, make sure you wear bright, reflective clothing and invest in lights for your bike. If you’re wearing dark clothes and have no lights, then there is no way other road users will be able to see you.

And finally, just as your parents used to tell you: always, always wear a helmet. It could save your life if you’re ever involved in an accident.

All in all, if you keep your wits about you and follow the basic safety rules of inner-city cycling, you won’t be able to go far wrong. Your safety is essential, but once you have reached your destination, so is your cycle’s. Make sure you lock up at a secure bike rack and leave your bike knowing it will be there when you get back. If you’re looking for any help or guidance, finding the right storage solution for you, get in touch today.

Battalion Court Cycle Shelters

Turvec are commencing works manufacturing and installing a bespoke cantilever cycle shelter and secure cycle enclosure for 114 bike spaces. A mix of accessible Sheffield stands, semi-vertical racks and gas-lifting 2ParkUp two-tier bike racks are being installed in the space. Battalion Court is a low rise development of new build apartments in Woolwich east London, and the project will be delivered in December 2019.

Cardiff Lane Dublin Contract Award

Turvec are delivering a 450 bicycle facility with a mix of the 2ParkUp two-tier rack and accessible Sheffield stands within a secure cycle enclosure at Cardiff lane in the Dublin docklands area. Cardiff Lane is a significant city centre site of 17,000min Dublin 2, it is the largest cycle parking project we have completed in Ireland to date and our second largest international project after 11 Wellesley in Toronto. 

What are the Rules When it Comes to Taking Bikes on Trains?

Thousands of trains run every day across the UK, connecting towns, cities, and cycle routes. Because of this, travelling by train is a popular choice for many cyclists. Whether you’re heading out on an all-day mountain bike ride, or you want to choose a greener way to commute this summer, there are a few rules that you should bear in mind before you take your bike on the train.

1. There are no additional charges for bikes

As long as you have a valid ticket for your journey, you can take your bike on the train with you at no extra cost. Great news for commuters! It can mean a cheaper way to travel to work. Many of the UK’s busiest stations also have bike parking facilities that allow you to lock up your bike ready for your return home securely.

2. You may have to reserve your bike space

All UK trains only have a certain amount of space dedicated to holding bikes, so you may need to reserve an area dependent on where and when you’re travelling. With most train lines, you can reserve a space when you book your tickets online. Call their helpline or visit the ticket office at your departing station.

3. There can be restrictions during peak times

During busy peak times – weekday mornings (07:00–10:00) and weekday evenings (16:00–19:00), regular bikes are not permitted on services to and from London. There are also Monday–Friday restrictions in place for taking your bike on rail services to and from Cardiff (during the hours of 07.30–09.30 and 16:00–18:00).

4. Consider purchasing a fully-folding bicycle

If you’re hoping to use the popular train-and-bike combination to get to work, it might be worth considering the purchase of a fully-folding bicycle. These commuter-friendly bikes are exempt from the restrictions mentioned above, as they are compact enough to be placed in the luggage rack, which is essential to make space on busy services. They’re also more comfortable to carry than standard bikes, which is useful considering that no cycling is permitted in UK stations.

5. Always check your journey in advance

It’s still a good idea to double-check your train’s status because only the fully-folding bikes mentioned above are permitted on rail replacement bus services. If you’re travelling in and around London, you can quickly check the status of your train and the location of engineering work using the TFL website. Many other train providers offer similar services on their websites, so be sure to double-check before you head out.

All in all, taking your bike on the train with you is a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly way to travel. Just be sure to bear the rules listed above in mind to ensure your journey is as smooth as possible.

Cycling To Work Tips

As working from home rules start to ease, and more of us are making our way back to the office, you might choose to hop on the cycle – it’s warm enough!

If it’s been a while since you put the pedal to the metal, or you’re trying it out for the first time, here’s some guidance to get you safely on your way.

If you’re considering a cool and breezy cycle into work as opposed to stifling public transport or a stuffy, boring car-ride, we can’t blame you.

Cycling your morning commute offers more predictable travel times and a breath of fresh air, not to mention the fact that it’s an eco-friendly alternative to motor vehicles.

And it can also help your waistline! Burning those few extra calories before you’ve even started your working day is a great way to ensure you get your recommended minutes of daily exercise.

According to Better Health, the health benefits of regular cycling include:

  • increased cardiovascular fitness
  • increased muscle strength and flexibility
  • improved joint mobility
  • decreased stress levels
  • improved posture and coordination
  • strengthened bones
  • decreased body fat levels
  • prevention or management of disease
  • reduced anxiety and depression.

But, for all the benefits of cycling to work, there are some things to keep on top of. Namely, safety, hydration and sweat! So here are some tips on how to keep you getting on your cycle day after day.

 

Our top tips for cycling to work

1. Plan ahead

It’s a good idea to plan your route so you can include as many quiet, shaded streets as possible. Cycling amongst the traffic can not only be intimidating but will also make you feel warmer due to the vast number of fumes being emitted from each vehicle as you pass.

Luckily, there are lots of route-plotting apps available to help you with this, so experiment with the different options to find which one is right for you.

If your commute is particularly lengthy or you don’t feel comfortable cycling on busy main roads, you might decide to ride part of the way. At a stopping point, you could leave your bike in a bike locker or attached to a bike rack before walking, driving, or using public transport for the rest of the journey.

This way, you’re still enjoying the great outdoors on your way into work, and you’ll also have peace of mind knowing that your bike is ready and waiting for your return home.

Just make sure you plan by devising a route beforehand and checking your local area for available bike storage.

2. Stay hydrated

Staying hydrated is a crucial part of ensuring you don’t overheat or get to work feeling ill or dizzy after your morning commute.

Make sure you carry a bottle of water with you at all times and remember to keep sipping it at regular intervals throughout the ride. It’s also important that, once you’re in work, you keep drinking water throughout the day to replace any fluids you have lost as a result of sweating during your active commute.

3. Stay safe

Don’t make your way to work in a rush, weaving through traffic and putting yourself in dangerous situations. As we’ll reiterate in the next section, leave yourself ample time.

By leaving extra time for your journey, you won’t need to rush (and likely sweat more) or put yourself in danger. Also, you give yourself time to stop for a morning coffee, or in the unfortunate incident of puncture, you have time to stop and repair.

Wear a helmet. There are no excuses not to. It could save your life.

4. Freshen up on arrival

Try to leave your house an extra 10-15 minutes earlier than you usually do to ensure you have enough time to cool off and freshen up after your commute.

Many offices now include showers and changing rooms to accommodate your busy commute. Still, if this isn’t something currently available, a good option is always joining a gym or leisure centre near your office. Membership will allow you to use the facilities there before you head into work—of course, it helps if you also use the gyms other facilities!

Bringing a change of clothes is also an option, especially if you’re going to be cycling long distances. It makes sense to cycle in breathable exercise wear, then change on arrival.

If you’re lucky, you may find that after a leisurely-paced ride, all you need to do is whip off your helmet, smooth down your hair and you’ll be ready to start the day.

Ultimately, the best way to know what will work for you on your active morning commute is to try it out for yourself.

 

Whatever you choose to do, remember to slow down, stay safe and enjoy! A workspace that includes a secure cycle shelter or compound will put your mind at rest when you’re locking up your bike. For any questions you have concerning your cycle security – feel free to contact us today.

Dutch Cycle Lanes – Why We Should Be Inspired By Their Cycle Paths

When it comes to cycling, the Dutch are kilometres ahead of the rest of us, quite literally. The average Dutch person cycles around 1,000 km annually, and in 2017, there were 22.5 million bicycles in the Netherlands – more than the 17.1 million people who live there.

A country with most cyclists, but the safest. How did their cycling infrastructure get so good? And what can we learn from them?

Most of us, including some dutch people, believe that all the incredible cycling infrastructure, including vast interconnected cycle paths, have always been there. But while cycle paths in the country’s cities had existed pre-WW2, they were much narrower, unlevel and disconnected.

There also wasn’t such a concern for separate cycle paths because there weren’t so many cars.

Their current infrastructure and policies came about through a series of changes that took place post-WW2 and came to a head in the 1970s.

After WW2 the Netherland got richer – which changed their roads

While before the war, bicycles far outnumbered their motorised, four-wheeled, counterparts, that changed in the late 40s and 50s. Car purchases went through the roof as the average wage continued to increase.

With this growth of cars on city streets that weren’t built to cope with it all brought about change. Buildings were knocked down. Infrastructure was uprooted to create more roads, car parks and other space for the motorcar.

These changes also caused a decrease in cycling, a 6% decrease per year.

More cars and roads brought more traffic collisions, and deaths

In 1971, things were set to change. In that year alone there were over 3,000 deaths on Dutch roads, with 400 of those deaths being children 14 and under.

The Dutch were not going to stand for this. I cities especially, the public came out in their masses to protest against “child murder”. They called for safer streets for their children, pedestrians and cyclists.

Then, the 1973 oil crisis came

This oil crisis took a toll on energy consumption. Gas was exceptionally pricey, and a lot of roads started to empty.

Due to the country having to be careful with its energy use, the Dutch had a perfect opportunity to heed the call from protesters, and they took it. The then president of the Netherlands, Joop den Uyl, bega to promote cycling policies such as “car-free Sundays” to save on the country’s oil.

Every Sunday became a time to see was their cities used to look like before the advent and domination of cars. And it wasn’t long before the first city centres were made car-free, permanently. More followed.

But the protests didn’t stop

Even though more city centres and beyond were becoming car-free, the protests continued. The Dutch people argued that mass motorisation killed their cities, their people and their environment.

Cycle tours, the painting of cycle routes on their cities streets and mass peaceful protests outside major landmarks like the Museumplein.

And the central government listened

In the mid-1970s, municipalities were funded by the national government in building brand new cycling infrastructure, including safe cycle paths and connected routes. Some of these routes were born straight out of the hand painted ways that earlier protesters had created.

Hague and Tilburg were the first municipalities to complete their cycling infrastructure. Their completion saw a 60-70% increase in cycling across them.

Other municipalities followed, and from the 70s until recently in 2010, child deaths were down to 14 across the country—a resounding victory.

So, what have all these changes achieved?

Less road traffic accidents

It makes sense that the more Dutch cycle paths there are, the fewer people there will be using cars as an everyday mode of transport.

The Dutch continue to encourage people to cycle rather than drive in city centres. Promoting more cycle-friendly cities could have a positive impact on the number of road traffic collisions there are in the UK, and help to normalise cycling as a means of transport.

A healthier, easier commute

More than a quarter of people living in the Netherlands cycle to work.

Unfortunately, this is far from the case in British cities. In Manchester, for example, two-thirds of people currently use their car as their primary mode of transport.

This over-reliance on the petrol and diesel-guzzling vehicles we have all come to know is harmful. Not only is it dangerous to our health and our children’s health, but our local environments too.

There’s an abundance of cycle infrastructure and parking

Of course, if we want the uptake of cyclists to increase in the UK dramatically, adequate bicycle parking facilities would have to be provided to accommodate the influx. These facilities are yet another thing that the Dutch do well.

The space under Utrecht’s train station can hold up to 12,500 bikes – the largest in the world of its kind. By offering these sorts of premium facilities in the UK, more people would be likely to take up cycling as a means of transport to and from public places, such as train stations.

Taking up cycling on a mass scale will have a beneficial impact on almost all aspects of life – from the economy to the environment, public health to mental wellbeing.

We’re ready and waiting to embrace any Dutch-inspired changes

More infrastructure will lead to more secure cycle storage, and that’s where we come in.

If you’ve any projects you’d like our help with, we’d be more than happy to help. Contact us today and tell us about your projects—we offer two-tier bike racks to bike lockers.

11 Wellesley – Canadian Distributor Announcement

Turvec are pleased to announce our partnership with Urban Art & Metal Works Inc who are acting as Turvec’s exclusive distributor in Canada. Our first joint project is 11 Wellesley Toronto. Turvec are supplying 642 2ParkUp two-tier racks for this building, serving the residential units and commercial space at ground level. This is the first 2ParkUp installation in North America, and the 642 bike spaces for residents are located across three cycle stores on the lower levels of the 60 floor building.

The Top 4 Benefits of Installing School Cycle Storage

Installing easily accessible cycle storage in your school is a key component in encouraging pupils to make their daily journey to and from school by bike. Although it may seem like a massive project, the benefits of installing school cycle storage far outweigh the cost.

It will encourage pupils to cycle to school

Although this may sound obvious, installing places to store bikes will actively encourage pupils to dust off their bikes, oil up their gears and get cycling to school. With no incentive to do so, pupils will be less inclined to make this decision of their own accord. However, with a little encouragement and nudge in the right direction, you’ll be surprised at how many of your pupils latch on to the idea. It really could prove to be a snowball effect!

It promotes exercise as part of a healthy, active lifestyle

With an NHS survey estimating that 28% of children aged 2 to 15 in England were overweight or obese in 2016, and in June of 2018, an update to an earlier action plan was published, setting a national ambition to “halve childhood obesity and reduce the gap in obesity between children from the most and least deprived areas by 2030”. So, now really is the time to promote the benefits of exercise as part of a healthy, active lifestyle. In opposition to sitting stationary in a parent or carer’s car, cycling to school will not only burn calories and increase energy expenditure but also help to boost students’ cardiovascular fitness and overall health. Even for students who struggle most with their cardiovascular fitness, or may have another issue which proves to a barrier to cycling, electric bikes are becoming ever more available.

Embedding the fundamental importance of daily physical activity into your school’s pupils will serve them well for a long time to come, and help to ensure that the adults of our future are conscious of their decisions when it comes to their health and wellbeing.

It will reduce traffic at the school gates

A huge issue in schools across the nation is the number of cars that amass at the school gates during drop-off and pick-up times; this is not only unhealthy for our pupils, but it also causes unnecessary stress for parents who struggle to find a place to park and commuters who become agitated at the increased traffic. By encouraging pupils to cycle to school, the need for parents to drive to school will be negated, and thus, the amount of traffic at the school gates reduces, benefitting pupils, parents, the community and the environment.

It is a safe and secure way to store bikes during the school day

Without a safe cycle storage solution, parents may be wary of sending their children to school on a bike that could become vandalised, lost or stolen. However, by choosing the right cycle storage, your pupils’ bikes will be kept safe and secure throughout the school day and be ready and waiting for them on their ride home. For more information about the range of bike cycle storage solutions that we can offer your school, take a look at our handy bike storage guide today.

What You Can Include On An Outdoor Bike Repair Station

Outside (or public) bike pumps and repair stations are a common installation in new developments and public spaces. 

They’re designed to provide an opportunity for cyclists within your community to perform on the go repairs. Here are some features you can include which you could consider. 

These cyclist-friendly stations are suitable for continuous public use. With that in mind, including the most immediately needed features should be top of your list of priorities.

Include a pressure gauge

Not all outside bike repair stations will include a pressure gauge as standard. This feature ensures cyclists do not over or under inflate their tyres – a lifesaver on longer journeys where tyre pressure can be more affected.

Think about a steel pump piston as standard

Unfortunately, when something is left outdoors in a public space, it can befall damage or vandalism.

Steel pump pistons are far less vulnerable than plastic alternatives. If you want your installation to stand the test of time, look for this as a standard feature.

Steel cables keep your outdoor repair station tools safe

A concern for repair stations in public spaces is theft of the tools.

Steel cables, ideally plastic coated, is a simple solution to this. For added security, include a lockable door to limit access out of hours.

While steel cables are a deterrent, a determined individual with lock clippers could still cause damage—the addition of a lockable steel door prevents this.

Don’t forget about how-to guides

A simple guide, QR code or link to YouTube videos is a great help to cyclists looking to make simple repairs on the move.

Outdoor repair stations, in particular, require simple instructions or guidance for first-time users to ensure proper use.

You can include your branding

You have the option to brand a station. Branding can identify the purpose of the unit, which may not be apparent to all members of the public.

Branding communicates the brand or identity of a building, or where funding for a repair station may have come from.

If you’re a local council or business looking to install an outdoor bike repair station, then we can help. Give us a call or an email to discuss your project.

Bradwell Street student accommodation cycle racks

Turvec are installing 206 bike parking spaces to new student accommodation on Bradwell Street in East London. Serving Queen Mary University, the development comprises of 412 student rooms in a series of 8-10 storey towers, the bike stores have direct ground level access and are broken into two secure rooms. Turvec’s 2ParkUp two-tier rack was selected for this project as our double-tier solution, within the parking we have also incorporated a mix of Sheffield stands to provide accessible parking for all bike types.

Cycling in Winter: Top Tips for Busy Commuters

The cold winter months often bring icy roads and harsh weather conditions that can deter cyclists from riding their bikes. And it’s important to be careful: in 2016, 18,477 cyclists were injured in reported road accidents, including 3,499 who were killed or seriously injured. Yet, with the right preparation and mindset, the beginning of winter shouldn’t impact your daily commute. Here are our top tips for busy commuters to keep up their cycling year-round – whatever the weather!

Choose the right clothing

The winter months are not as easy as summer when it comes to clothing. Think about swapping your vests and shorts for windproof thermals, gloves, overshoes and clear or lightly tinted glasses.

It’s essential to choose a kit that not only keeps you warm against the elements but also ensures sweat is absorbed and evaporated quickly. If you don’t choose cycle-specific clothing, it’s likely that built-up sweat will make you feel damp and clammy, which is not a good start to anyone’s working day.

Although the best bike clothing can be expensive, it’s a worthwhile investment if it means you can comfortably keep cycling throughout winter.

Prepare for punctures

Punctures – a cyclist’s worst nightmare!

As the weather gets increasingly worse, the greater your chances are of obtaining punctures. Wet, uneven roads can create difficult conditions to cycle on. And no one wants to get caught out by a pesky puncture – especially not on the way to work.

Prepare for punctures by including at least two tubes and a pump in your backpack. Make sure to check that your pump still works if you haven’t used it in a while. If you’re cycling with friends or in a group, remember to remind them to bring their pumps before you head out – it could make all the difference to your ride. We also recommend purchasing tyres that are durable and include some element of puncture protection to avoid bicycle punctures and gain some peace of mind.

Remember to eat and drink

Fuelling your body before, during and after a ride is key to keeping on the bike during winter. Some energy bars can become hard during cold weather so softer food, or even gels might be your best bet.

Even though it’s likely you won’t be sweating as much because of the low temperatures, it’s also important to still keep hydrated. A good way to warm up and get some food and drink is by taking a mid-ride cafe stop that will help to replenish your energy levels if it’s a long ride. If you live in London there’s sure to be plenty of stops along the way, especially along some of the most well-known, popular routes. Alternatively, if you’re just on your daily commute, warm up with a hot drink and snack when you get to, and home from, work.

Be safe, be seen

It’s a sad fact that during winter, the commute to and from work oftentimes will be in the dark. Making sure you have a working light on your bike will ensure that drivers and other road users are able to see you from a distance, as well as you being able to clearly guide your way. And the good news is, there’s no need to spend a fortune – rechargeable LED lights can be bought in your local hardware shop and will work a treat.

Lock it or Lose it

Of course, a lost or stolen bike is no use for the commuter, no matter the weather – we previously wrote an article on how to keep your bike safe. One of the best ways is to keep it locked up in a safe and secure cycle compound.

For any information or advice about the range of bike storage solutions we offer at Turvec, get in touch with us today.

The Growth in Electric Bikes

Electric bikes have an abundance of benefits. From making your daily commute more pleasant to reducing fuel costs and helping the environment, it’s no wonder Europe has seen recent growth in the usage of e-bikes. Although electric bikes haven’t taken off quite as quickly in the UK as they have in other European countries such as Germany and Switzerland, sales are steadily increasing and are set to grow over the coming years.

So, what is an electric bike?

As the name suggests, an electric bike (or e-bike for short) is similar to a regular bicycle, but it also includes a battery and electric motor that helps to give the rider a little boost while pedalling. In this sense, e-bikes can be more accessible than standard bicycles and a good option for a wide range of people. For example, elderly individuals who may not feel confident riding a standard pushbike on the roads would benefit from an electric bike. Similarly, people with mobility issues or even those with a generally lower level of fitness may find that e-bikes help to make cycling a more enjoyable experience.

Moreover, no matter your fitness level – e-bikes give you a much-needed push when it comes to riding up hills and cycling for long periods; they essentially make life that little bit easier!

What has spiked a growth in electric bikes?

Increasing consumer awareness of the damage fossil fuels cause to the environment have resulted in many people considering alternative methods of transport. Electric bikes are an eco-friendly substitute for cars, making them the perfect choice for people who are actively trying to reduce their carbon footprint.

Aside from their environmental benefits, e-bikes also help people to save money. A survey of 2,000 commuters undertaken by Evans Cycles estimated that by switching from public transport to e-bikes, travellers could save over £7,500 across five years.*

As well as helping to save the environment and helping commuters to save money, e-bikes can also save you valuable time – especially in rush hour. By taking advantage of bicycle paths, you’ll be able to stay on the move and whizz past all the stationary cars – a commuter’s dream!

Is riding an e-bike still exercise?

Of course! Electric bikes still require you to pedal, so riding them is a form of exercise. The electrical assistance will only start once you’ve begun to pedal, and you can choose how much or how little support the bike gives you.

At Turvec, we’re passionate about getting more people cycling: whether that’s using a standard bicycle or an electric bike. Our secure bike storage solutions are perfect for businesses and organisations looking to provide safe spaces for employees and members to store their bikes. Get in touch with us today for any more information.

*Source: The Guardian
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/sep/16/rise-of-the-ebike-how-going-electric-could-revolutionise-your-ride

Nile Street Bike Parking

Turvec have been awarded the contract for all bike storage and shelters at the redevelopment of the New Regents College site on Nile Street in London. The development consists of 175 residential units, commercial space and a new school.

Turvec are delivering 407 bike storage spaces throughout two bespoke sedum roof compounds, public space and a secure basement cycle store for ‘The Makers Shoreditch’, the 28 storey apartment building. We are providing the required spaces with a mix of 2ParkUp two-tier racks, vertical racks and Sheffield stands.

 

Best bike rides in London

Whether you’ve lived in London all your life or have just made the move to the capital, cycling is a brilliant way to take in the city, its sights and surroundings. 

We’ve handpicked three of our favourite bike rides across London to help you discover the city in a new way,

Although London is somewhat infamous in the UK for its heavy traffic and busy streets, there’s actually an array of brilliant bike routes that will take you across the city and provide an appealing alternative to public transport.

Here are some of our favourites.

 The Tamsin Trail – a rite of passage for any keen cyclist living in London

The Tasmin Trial is a 12 km loop that goes to all corners of the park and includes a few short and sharp inclines, as well some longer, more gradual inclines.

The route is ideal for beginners or anyone fancying a nice leisurely ride.

There are also plenty of places to stop for ice cream or a cold drink along the way, making it the perfect route for a warm summers day.

However, if you want to push yourself – three laps of the 12 km route in one hour is a good challenge for any cyclist. Our favourite part about this route is the viewpoint from Richmond Gate; it looks right over central London and gives you a clear view of both the capital and the countryside.

Take in London’s most popular sights and tourist attractions

This 16 km route from Battersea Park to Greenwich, is one of the best ways to take in London’s most popular sights and tourist attractions, so it’s perfect for impressing friends and family who come to visit.

Cycling along the Thames, you’ll ride past the London Eye, the Tate Modern, the Globe and Borough Market, to name just a few highlights.

The route is relatively easy and a great way to see more of London without having to pay taxi or tube fares from one tourist attraction to the next.

The rolling hillsides and peaceful countryside of Surrey awaits

The Westminster Bridge to Box Hill route is not for the faint-hearted.

Cycling just outside of London via Richmond Park and Hampton Court Palace, the rolling hillsides and peaceful countryside of Surrey awaits. The gruelling 42 km route incorporates part of the 2012 Olympic road-cycling route in Box Hill – ‘Zig Zag Road’ – reaching an ascent of over 120m.

But its all worth it when you feel the satisfaction of making it to the top and witnessing some incredible views of Surrey’s countryside – it makes it hard to believe you’re just 30 km south-west of London!

Loop around Regent’s Park

If you’re looking for more of a pass time than a way of getting from A to B, this route will work for you.

The loop around Regent’s park also works well as a 4km timed lap track, a place where you can practice race intervals and travel at some speed.

Watch out for pedestrians and traffic, but you’ll be glad to know there aren’t many traffic lights to interrupt your flow.

Start in the corner closest to Regent’s Park underground station and travel anti-clockwise.

It’s not a bad view while you cycle either, the flowers and open spaces are a sight to behold. Oh, you can also stare in envy at some of the houses around the park too—if you’re lucky, you might see a giraffe pop its head above the fencing from London Zoo.

Expereince the sites of the River Lea

The well-documented cycle route that is Tottenham Marshes to Victoria Park gives its riders beautiful sites up the River Lea.

You start at Tottenham Marshes before following the towpath through some of the city’s less known places. Always great for explorers.

Although the river doesn’t find itself mentioned in many tourist guides, it’s a pretty waterway to travel alongside.

By the time you’re at Hackney Wick, you can follow the path that brings you out at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park where this route can conclude exploring the grand building. Or, if you’d prefer, there’s plenty of cafes and other smaller attractions to refresh and continue on.

Want a route a little out of the ordinary?

If you’re looking for a route that covers some of the more peculiar areas central London has to offer, Andreas’ guide is sure to be of interest to you.

The route starts at Leinster Gardens with its fake houses above the London underground before passing pet cemeteries, Cross Bones Graveyard before ending at some of the best small coffee houses and shops at Neal’s Yard.

Something off the beaten track, if that’s what you’re looking for!

We work with local councils to keep your cycle safe

Is there enough cycle parking and security on your route? If there isn’t why not let the local council know? We work with council’s to improve cycle parking facilities across London and further. If you’d like to learn more, give us a call.

Boris Bikes: How Many People Actually Use Them?

Santander Cycles, commonly referred to as ‘Boris Bikes’ after Boris Johnson who was the Mayor of London when the bike scheme was introduced, are growing in popularity. In 2017, record numbers of people used Boris Bikes to get around London, with more than 10.3 million journeys being made. Since its launch in 2010, Boris Bikes have facilitated over 67 million journeys throughout the capital city.

A hot summer of cycling

If you were in England this summer, you’ll know it was the hottest summer on record, marginally beating the temperatures recorded in the summer of 1976. It stayed that way pretty much for the months of June and July.

As the majority of London’s public transport doesn’t have air conditioning, this made for a lot of hot and sweaty trains and buses. According to TfL, this trend of warm weather led to record-breaking numbers of people using Boris Bikes.

July 2018 was the scheme’s most successful month in its eight-year history, with over 1.2 million people hiring the bicycles to get around. Whether it was to ride around London taking in the sites under a shining summer sun, or simply to avoid the hotter methods of traditional public transport, the recent warm weather definitely caused a spike in the number of people using Boris Bikes.

Investing in the future of transport

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said of the bikes that he’s ‘delighted that record numbers of Londoners are using our world-famous Santander Cycles to travel around the capital. Cycling helps to improve our health, air quality and congestion, and that’s why I’m investing record amounts to make it even safer and easier for all Londoners to take to two wheels.

The mayor’s record investment in the scheme hopes to deliver an infrastructure that connects people all across the city, encouraging more Londoners to use the bikes to get around quickly, safely and easily. As riding a bike is great for your health and poses no threat to the environment, Boris Bikes could provide a sustainable solution for reducing the amount of congestion and subsequent pollution in London, whilst also improving peoples’ overall health and wellbeing.

How does the scheme work?

Boris Bikes are so easy to use – and the first half an hour is free! With 11,000 bicycles, there will almost always be a bike waiting for you in any of the 70 docking stations across London. It only costs £2 to use a Boris Bike for 24 hours, with a surplus £2 charge for every additional 30 minutes if you’re using the bike for a longer journey. The bikes can be paid for using your card at the docking station, or even easier, by using the official Santander Cycles app, which sends a release code straight to your phone, allowing you to skip past the terminal and get cycling straight away!

All over the UK, Turvec design and install secure bike storage solutions for businesses, councils, schools and more. Get in touch with us today for any more information about how we can help to keep your bicycles safe!

 

Dutch bike storage facilities – The future?

The Dutch are often referenced as world leaders in cycling, 84% of people in the Netherlands own at least one bicycle and more than one-quarter of all trips made are by bicycle. In relation to bike storage facilities, the Dutch are certainly setting the precedent in terms of the scale of their bike parking numbers.

Utrecht, a city where over 40% of short journeys are taken by bicycle has the world’s largest bike ‘garage’ with 12,500 parking spaces. As a comparison, the UK’s largest bicycle hub has capacity for around 3,000 parking spaces at Cambridge Station.

Another example of the cycle parking investment found in the Netherlands is seen in the City of Zaandam. A purpose-built ‘Fietsenpakhuis’, or ‘bicycle warehouse’, was developed to further encourage cycling to the city centre by bicycle, the impressive structure houses 700 bicycles. Turvec’s partner company, Klaver Fietsparkeren delivered this project for the City, installing the 2ParkUp two-tier bike rack.

Often photographed, a prominent facility is found at Amsterdam Centraal Station, a common location for tourists to enter the City. This multi-tiered bike park rises above the canals and services the rail station and surrounding area.

Nationally we are seeing a trend towards Dutch style, two-tier focused cycle hub facilities, increasing both the capacities and quality of bike storage in the UK. When planning larger bike stores, it is important to consider that UK and Dutch cyclists have different needs, and with a greater requirement for security, and a larger variety of bicycle types and sizes being ridden in the UK, this should always be considered to ensure a fully-functioning bike park.

 

How to Prevent Bicycle Vandalism

Not everyone appreciates or respects cyclists and their bikes. Some people will go out of their way to vandalise and steal bicycles that have been left unattended.

Here’s some advice for those of you trying to keep your bicycle safe from thieves, or opportunists.

Cycling is a brilliant way to stay fit and healthy. Whether you commute to work on your bike, cycle as a hobby, or just ride to the shops, there’s no doubt that it’s a handy way to get around.

It also helps to reduce the risk of health problems associated with an inactive lifestyle.

As cycling is a low-impact exercise, it’s perfect for people of all ages and abilities; from young children to professionals, to the older generation.

It’s also a great way to reduce your impact on the environment, save some money on petrol costs and of course, avoid the ever-dreaded queueing traffic.

All cyclists should feel safe in the knowledge that their bikes are as secure as possible against thieves, vandals or other opportunists. Here are some tips.

Take your bicycle indoors

When possible, the safest option is to take your bicycle indoors with you. That way, you’ll be able to keep an eye on it, and it won’t catch the attention of the wrong person.

Hopefully – if taking your bicycle inside is not an option – there’s a secure bike rack that can be used in external spaces. Try to avoid locking against fences, lamposts or other makeshift locking points, as the local council may remove your bike for not using a dedicated area.

Also, if your bike is alone, while it may be secure, it’s more of a target to passers-by.

Park it in a busy, well-lit area

If, for any reason, you’re unable to take your bicycle inside with you, make sure you park it in a busy, well-lit area. The more people walking by will reduce the chances of a person being able to vandalise or steal your bike and go unnoticed.

It would also be a massive plus if there were CCTV in the area, as this could act as an extra deterrent. And of course, if anything were to happen to your bike, you’ll have more chance of catching the person responsible if you have video evidence.

Lock it or lose it

Invest in a secure, safe bike lock and use it every time you leave your bike unattended.

While it may sound like an obvious thing to do, it’s surprising how many people will pop into the shop, or a friends’ house, and simply leave their bicycle outside with no lock attached, trusting that nothing will happen.

It only takes a few seconds for a thief or vandal to grab your bike and cycle away when it’s not locked up.

Admittedly, no lock is impenetrable, but some are close. It’s most definitely worth getting one as the amount of effort it takes to break a good-quality lock means that it will act a major deterrent for vandals.

Is there a severe lack of safe cycle parking in your area?

If you’re plagued by poor cycle safety due to their being little to no safe cycle parking in your area, why not write to your council?

We work with councils to help keep societies safe from cycle thieves.

There’s a variety of secure, indoor and outdoor bicycle storage solutions that will help to protect your bike against vandalism and theft. Feel free to get in touch today if you’d like any more information!

London Plan Cycle Parking – Changes To The Cycling Design Standards

The London Plan outlines minimum cycle parking requirements within London.

We’ve put together a breakdown of some of the general requirements for public cycle parking.

In the 2018 update, the London Cycling Design Standards note that fit-for-purpose cycle parking should:

  • be accessible to all and signposted as necessary 
  • meet recommended space requirements but use space efficiently 
  • serve identified uses, with an appropriate balance between long- and short-stay 
  • provide for flexible use during the day and week 
  • be integrated well with other uses of a street or public or private space

Cycle parking needs to take into account all user needs. By taking all requirements into account, it can’t exclude or disadvantage riders. This includes people who use handcycles, tricycles, tandems and models adapted to suit the rider’s specific needs.

Notable changes for residential cycle parking

The bike storage numbers are calculated by the number of bedrooms in residential units, and sqm in commercial developments. The Draft New London Plan outlines increases in the previous London Plan, and below Turvec have identified what we believe are the most notable changes.

  1. 1.5 bike spaces would be required for a one-bedroom dwelling, rather than the current 1:1 ratio for one bed. 
  2. Commercial sees a proposed increase of 1 bike per 75sqm, rather than one bike per 90sqm in the current London Plan. 

These changes will have an impact on the space required for bike parking in more significant developments, and focus should remain on providing convenient, correctly spacing bike stores rather than reducing spacing to meet these requirements.

Tubular stands

For public use tubular sands, these are the considerations designers are installers must follow:

  • Stands on the highway should be either black, signal grey or stainless steel.
  • TLRN, black, nylon-coated stands are the standard for central London and town centres.
  • Stainless steel should be standard for arterial roads.
  • The stands must have a strong visual contrast with the surrounding environment.
  • A tapping rail is also recommended for the end cycle stand so that an empty stand can be identified by anyone using a cane.

Two-tier stands

Careful consideration should be given to:

  • the location of stands, minimising conflict with pedestrians using the surrounding area 
  • the level of natural surveillance surrounding the stands to ensure users feel confident to lock their cycles using the stand 
  • the design of the chosen stand, to ensure cycles can be locked by securing at least one wheel and the frame – it is possible to specify two-tier racks with an additional security bar, to enable both wheels and the structure to be secured

Cycle lockers

Designers and installers must consider:

  • the design of the locker, particularly any moving parts, which are particularly vulnerable to vandalism or leverage by thieves 
  • the space available and cycle parking demand – some cycle lockers, particularly those that Two-tiered, high capacity cycle parking at Euston station store cycles horizontally rather than vertically, has a large footprint 
  • accommodating all sizes of cycle 
  • a management system, which may be provided by the supplier or planned separately 
  • the level of supervision of locker sites, ensuring they do not suffer from vandalism or misuse 
  • the location of lockers within site, to ensure the facility is convenient and accessible 
  • the sustainability of any system in the future, allowing access to anyone who wants to use it 
  • liability for securing contents, which may need to be clearer than with open parking 
  • the ability to open and search lockers for security reasons

Shelters and compounds

For any secure shelter or compound, careful consideration should be given to:

  • access to the facility, ensuring spaces are available to registered users 
  • administration of the access system and responsibility for keys/access cards, including a deposit system for cards and whether a charge is levied 
  • type of cycle parking racks, allowing cycles to be secured within the compound and enabling parking of larger models of cycle 
  • personal security of those accessing the compound, including lighting, CCTV, visibility in the compound, doors opening away from the carriageway 
  • maintenance and operational costs 
  • management of the facility – if managed by a private company, legal agreements may be needed to enable this use of highway space 
  • retaining access for street cleaning 
  • ensuring that drainage is not adversely affected

What counts as secure?

Cycle parking outside of buildings should be:

  • sited in locations that are visible and well overlooked with high levels of natural surveillance, and CCTV where necessary 
  • designed with consideration of sight lines into and out of the cycle cages, compounds or secure store 
  • adequately lit and overlooked, particularly at night-time or where the parking is undercover

What about ideal locations?

As a general rule, and bearing in mind the need to integrate with other user needs, cycle parking should be provided:

  • as close as possible to the final destination 
  • within 15 metres for short-stay parking serving a single destination 
  • within 25 metres for short-stay parking serving multiple sites 
  • within 50 metres for longer-stay parking 
  • in convenient locations for entrances to and exits from the destination 
  • where there is step-free and comfortable access – e.g. through use of dropped kerbs, cycle routes and crossings 
  • in such a way as to allow for parking larger cycles

For a rundown of each specific location including workplace, residential and more, you can find them in the London Cycling Design Standards.

What are the best Bike Racks for an Office or Workspace?

Everyone knows that cycling to work is a great way for employees to improve their fitness, avoid standstill traffic and get energised for the day ahead. But for employers, having a workforce of keen cyclists can pose a major question: how can the bikes be safely and easily stored? Employers often don’t have much space, and employees are understandably unwilling to leave their bikes in places where they could get damaged or stolen.

At Turvec, we’re here to help you answer that question. Having designed, planned and installed bike racks for a range of industries, we’re more than happy to share our expertise when it comes to the best bike racks for offices and workspaces. So, read on to find the perfect solution for your place of work.

Two Tier Bike Racks

Perfect for busy organisations with large workforces, our two tier bike racks can be installed either inside or outside your office building. The bike rack is gas-assisted, allowing bikes to be safely lifted without cyclists having to struggle manually. This saves valuable space and time, whilst ensuring all employees’ bikes can be kept together in a safe and secure place during the working week.

Sheffield Cycle Stand

A tried and trusted classic, the Sheffield cycle stand is ideal for small organisations looking to provide a safe outdoor space for employees’ bikes. Each bike stand allows for the secure locking of two bicycles, meaning you’ll easily be able to work out how many hoops you’ll need depending on the size of your workforce. Made from stainless-steel and available with a root or surface fix, this bike rack is a functional and effective choice for any small office or workspace.

We also offer a cycle toast rack, which involves a series of Sheffield stands attached to fixed rails for ease of installation. For small businesses, this is a cost-effective and simple way to ensure your employees have a safe space to store their bikes following their commute.

Vertical Bike Rack

For offices or workspaces that are tight on space, our vertical bike rack could be the solution for you. This bike rack can be fitted either indoors or outdoors depending on your needs. The wall hanger includes a locking point for bicycles which is easy to access and provides secure storage. Suitable for all bike types, this rack is the perfect choice for organisations with limited space who want to provide a safe space for their cyclist employees.

Semi-Vertical Bike Rack

Similar to the vertical bike rack, this is a great option for organisations with lots of cyclist employees but a limited amount of storage space. This bike rack can hold any number of bicycles, making it great for high-density storage. With secure locking points, employees can park their bike and work away the day comfortable in the knowledge that their bikes are safe and will be ready and waiting for the commute home.

Whatever space you have available in your office or workplace – whether that’s indoor or outdoor – we’re sure to have a bike storage solution that will suit your needs. Contact us today to find the perfect solution for your business!

Mastering Indoor Vertical Bike Storage

Indoor vertical bike storage is achieved by hanging the bicycle on a wall or frame inside a public or domestic building.

The purpose of this is to reduce the depth of a parked bicycle to its height only, allowing storage in smaller spaces. We’ve put together some advice and tips to help you get it right.

Vertical bike racks are available in several designs, from simple wall hooks to secure units with rubber supports and locking points.

When specifying a vertical bike rack, consider the following:

Will it be secure and support heavy or thicker locks?

In a communal bike store this is vital, how can a bike be locked to the rack? Is there a locking point or easy access for a D-lock to the bicycle frame?

Even though the cycle will be inside, it doesn’t mean it will be secure without locking. Consider the thickness of the steel used in construction.

Is it easily usable inside?

How easy is it for a cyclist to park their bicycle in the rack? Are there wheel guides? How much lifting is required? Will the rack support larger or heavier bicycles? Does the design allow for the parking of bikes with mudguards?

Remember, with an indoor vertical bike rack reasonable adjustments might have to be made for commercial settings and domestic.

While these racks are designed to save space by placing cycles in an upright position, ensuring cycles can easily be manoeuvred into the wrack and locked with ease should be a consideration.

Will they offer the best bicycle support?

The basic vertical bike rack designs can damage bicycle wheels or scratch the forks, designs which protect a bicycle with rubber supports or that cradle the wheel rather than the frame are preferable.

Keeping these considerations in mind when considering dimensions and space available goes a long way to ensuring the cycle is homed safely, without scratching or damage occurring.

Installation and spacing

Is the wall or framing suitable for the installation of a rack and supporting the weight of parked bicycles? You can check out required dimensions for most cycle parking in another of our blog posts.

Looking for indoor vertical bike storage designed and installed by seasoned veterans?

Should you need any assistance with the design or installation of your indoor or outdoor vertical bike storage, we’d be happy to help.

Call us or email us today, and we’ll get back to you.

Bike parking rack dimensions

Two things determine the footprint, dimensions and loading distance required for a bike rack:

  • the dimensions of a bicycle
  • the angle the bike is parked

Typically, storage allows 750mm for handlebars and 1800mm for the length of the cycle.

Horizontal bike storage:

Horizontal racks store a bicycle conventionally on both wheels, racks with this positioning, therefore, require the full length of a bike for storage.

Rack types: Sheffield hoops, Cobra racks, recumbent parking, E-Bike stations.

Requirement: 1800mm – 2000mm footprint, 1500mm loading distance.

Vertical bike storage:

Vertical racks store a bicycle at 90 degrees, vertically on a wall or frame. The height of a bike determines this depth required for these racks; this is internationally recognised as 1200mm for larger bikes.

Rack types: Secure vertical racks, Cradle racks, wall hangers.

Requirement: 1200mm footprint, 1500mm loading distance. 2200mm ceiling height (for staggered racks).

Semi-vertical bike storage:

Semi-vertical racks store a bicycle at an angle, this reduces the required headroom for vertical frames whilst retaining the dense centre to centre spacing. Framing also reduces the installation time.

Rack types: Semi-vertical racks.

Requirement: 1500mm footprint, 1500mm loading distance.

Two-tier bike storage:

Two-tier racks position one bicycle above another to double capacity of an area.

Rack types: 2ParkUp two-tier rack.

Requirement: 2000mm footprint, 2000mm loading distance. 2600mm clear height

Still unsure about parking rack dimensions?

If you’re still unsure about any rack dimensions, measurements or design plans, then get in touch with our office; we’d be happy to help.

Folding bike lockers

Folding bike lockers provide a purpose designed compartment for the storage of Brompton and folding style bicycles. It is reported that 15% of cycle traffic during peak times in the City of London is now on folding bicycles, and we look to incorporate this into the design of our bike parking facilities.

The lockers only occupy a small footprint of 410mm x 645mm, and we supply them in stacks of two or three units, providing a highly space efficient method of bike storage. Currently these lockers are only permissible as a parking space by planning in commercial buildings, however at Turvec we believe these should also satisfy the requirement for residential developments.

Turvec bike lockers are available in a range of colours and finishes, and we can incorporate custom branding, keycard locks and electric charging points within our design. Contact our team with any questions.

 

FAQ’s – Bike tool stations and public pumps

How is a pump or station installed?

Bike pumps and maintenance stations are delivered by courier or pallet ready for installation. This is four fixing points on the base plate that require bolting into a suitable surface such as a concrete pad, if you have any further queries here please call us.

What are the options for colours and branding?

We offer a range of colours and custom branding on all bike repair stations and pumps, this is included with all quotes. 10 colours are standard, and there may be an additional charge for bespoke requests. Turvec can include your logo on our graphics template, or print a custom design to your specification.

What is the lead time?

Our lead times vary depending on the time of year, we generally deliver to a 4-5 week lead time but during peak periods this can increase to 6-8 weeks.

Do the stations require electricity or water?

No, the bike pump is manual. Stations only require bolting into a secure surface and are ready for use.

Is there a product warranty?

Yes, we include a 2 year product warranty on all pumps and repair stations.

Do the stations and pumps require maintenance?

We recommend assessing the tools once a year to check for any damage. Turvec offer a maintenance package, contact us for further information.

What Does a Cycle Repair Station Include?

Public bike pumps and repair stations are a common installation in new developments and public spaces. Designed to provide the opportunity for on-the-go repairs, these cyclist-friendly stations are suitable for continuous public use. Before selecting a station to install or specify, consider the following features.

The Swiss Army Knife of Cycle maintenance

Here’s what’s included in your cycle repair stations:

As standard, we include:

• A Phillips screwdriver
• A flat screwdriver
• A T25 Torx – screwdriver
• An adjustable spanner
• Skateboard tools
• A flat wrench 8×10 mm & 13×15 mm
• A hex key set
• Tyre levers.

Pairing a maintenance station with a public bicycle pump is always a good idea.

A Pressure gauge

Not all pumps will include a pressure gauge as standard; this is an important feature to ensure cyclists do not over or under inflate their tires.

Steel pump piston

Steel pump pistons are far less vulnerable to vandalism or damage than plastic alternatives; we recommend looking for this as a standard feature.

Steel cables for repair station tools

A concern for repair stations in public spaces is theft of the tools. Steel cables, ideally plastic coated, is a simple solution to this. For added security, a lockable door can be included to limit access out of hours.

How-to guides

Make sure you’re getting the most out of the repair and pump cycle stations by knowing how to use them. Here’s a quick how-to guide:

Your Branding Can Be Included

Branding a station is important, to first identify the purpose of the unit, which may not be clear to all members of the public. Branding can also be used to communicate building identity or information on the funding for a repair station.

If you’re looking for your closest bike pump, we’ve created a resource that can help. Scroll down the product page to find the repair stand and pumps map.

Bicycle Detection Systems

Bicycle detection systems provide data on the usage of cycle parking facilities. Sensors in each parking space feed data to the central system, which can then be broadcast onto information screens throughout the facility, directing cyclists to available spaces.

“data from detection systems assists with the operation of a facility”

As well as improving user experience, data from detection systems assists with the operation of a facility. Abandoned bikes can be easily identified, along with peak times and popular areas of the parking area.

Electronic detection is a proven solution to bike parking management in the Netherlands, and as cycle parking facilities continue to increase in size and scale across the UK, they are a factor that should be considered to streamline to long term management of hundreds or thousands of bicycles.

 

Why 2600mm? Two Tier Bike Racks

The minimum requirement for any two-tier bicycle rack should always be 2600mm of clear height. This dimension is based on the size of a bicycle. We allow the internationally recognised size of a 1200mm tall bicycle, this accounts for larger sizes of bikes, ensuring any cyclist can park any bicycle in all available parking spaces.

“We allow the internationally recognised size of a 1200mm tall bicycle”

Stack one bicycle on top of another directly, and this equates to 2400mm of height, however, the design of two-tier parking racks incorporates a high-low stagger on both the upper and lower tiers, this stagger is to prevent handlebars clashing when creating a closer centre to centre distance between bicycles.

This stagger distance must be a minimum of 200mm in order to avoid clashes of handlebars and ensure access. When this 200mm stagger is accounted for, the end result is a minimum headroom requirement of 2600mm.

 

Avoiding clashing points in cycle parking

Avoiding clashing points when installing a bicycle parking facility is an important but often overlooked factor. A clashing point is where a part of a bicycle, usually the handlebars clashes with an object, or another bicycle.

“Clashing points are caused when bicycles are parked too close together, or too close to an obstruction such as a pillar or services running along a ceiling. ”

These can be avoided by properly considering the size of bicycles that will be stored in the unit. See our previous posts on bicycle height and rack spacing for further detail on this. Clashing points are most common on Sheffield hoops positioned too close together. The best systems for avoiding clashing points feature dedicated parking spaces, such as a properly designed two-tier rack or our Cobra cycle rack.

Public Bike Pump Cost?

The most cost-effective installation for this type of cycling infrastructure is a stand alone bicycle pump, increasing in cost to repair stands and fully integrated repair stations with pumps.

“Prices vary significantly dependant on options, from a few hundred pounds to upwards of a thousand for a high-specification, fully-integrated solution in stainless steel.”

Repair stations and pumps are delivered fully assembled and built up ready to bolt into a suitable surface. We always recommend that a pump or repair stand is bolted into a concrete base or secure paving slabs. Tarmac is not a secure enough surface on which to install a unit, and additional costs may be involved if a concrete pad is required for which to secure a pump or station. For a detailed quotation and proposal contact Turvec about our cycling infrastructure products.

Bicycle Parking CAD Blocks

If you’re looking for a range of CAD blocks for bicycle racks, stands and shelters, then you might be interested in our extensive library of files from past projects. 

These are perfect for architects, local councils or anyone looking to install a larger parking facility. 

Want us to send you examples?

Looking for a .dwg file?

If you require a .dwg file for a product, we can provide a CAD block for use in your drawing, or produce a recommended layout of our own.

Need assistance with the planning of projects in BIM? We are in the process of creating BIM files for all of our bicycle parking products.

If it’s not currently in our BIM library, we can send BIM compatible SAT files.

Visit our cycle storage planning page for more information on our design service.

Why use a CAD Block?

CAD blocks are a collection of labelled things that when put together, become one single 2D or 3D object.

They’re great when you need repeated content, such as the designing of new cycle parking—they capture standard details.

They save you time, effort and reduce the file size of your designs.

What’s a .dwg File?

The .dwg file is used for 2D and 3D storage. It is the standard format for several CAD packages including DraftSight, AutoCAD, BricsCAD, IntelliCAD, Caddie and Open Design Alliance compliant applications.

What’s BIM?

BIM is building information modelling. It works alongside CAD to render 2D and 3D images of larger architectural and building projects.

It can be used to forecast project issues or to tweak the design. In other words, it builds a digital twin or the real thing.

Are Folding Bikes Good for Commuting?

Are Folding Bikes Good for Commuting?

 

There are a few reasons why a cyclist would not have a folding bike for their commute. But, the main reason we bet would mainly consist of: they don’t like them. Either they don’t like the look or the fact they will be less pacey that a racer or they less able to traverse rough environments in comfort like a mountain bike. These things are true, but the folding bike is not designed for those reasons, so it is an unfair comparison.

 

The folding bike is made for communicating. Picture this, you’re out on your single-speed city bike, flying along when you get a puncture. You do not have a puncture repair kit with you, so you’re walking to work now. You try to catch the bus, but the driver, rightly, doesn’t want you taking up disabled space with your large bike. If you’re lucky to be relatively close, you get off likely and may be able to buy a repair kit before you go home. If you’re not lucky, you’ll have a long walk the rest of the way, and perhaps home.

 

Now, imagine this. You’re riding to work on your folding bike, and you get a puncture. You don’t have a puncture repair kit, but it is only a minor annoyance as you just fold it up and catch the next bus. You get a return so getting home is a little more pricey, but not a problem. You repair the puncture for the next day, and all is well – if a little annoying.

 

We know this is not a one-size-fits-all story. Take your commuter out of a city and into the countryside and getting a puncture without a repair kit at hand will be equally as damaging. But if you’re a countryside cycle commuter, then you should undoubtedly have a repair kit and other accessories to hand!

 

The folding bike it a brilliant commuter choice. If the reason you aren’t willing to invest is that you don’t think that are any reputable makes, then you’d be wrong, let us show you.

 

Are Folding Bikes any Good?

 

There is a multitude of cycle brands that are always improving on their folding bike offering. Far gone are the flimsy offerings of the past. There’s a vast range available, in a variety of styles, colours and sizes.

Some of their main selling points are:

 

  1. acceleration – due to smaller wheel size, their acceleration speed is surprisingly quick.
  2. Easy to lock and store – we’ll cover this a more detail later, but they don’t take up much space and can be easily secured.
  3. Easy to operate – contrary to some would-be buyers anxieties, they are easy to operate and ride.
  4. Easy to sell-on – you will indeed find that when it comes to upgrading, a foldable bike is much easier to sell-on than their counterparts (especially in commute-heavy cities).

If you want to find a list of the best about the town, then take a look at this article from Bicycling.com: The Best Folding Bikes You Can Buy Right Now.

 

Can I Take a Folding Bike on the Bus?

 

Yes, as we covered in our preliminary story, you can take a folding bike on the bus if you need to. Do make sure it is folded before you take it on board. There is generally a storage space on the right as you enter a bus, most drivers will be happy with you placing it there, or taking it by your feet.

 

How to Lock a Folding Bike

 

Although these innovative designs bring security benefits, as the bike can be taken with a cyclist wherever they go, it is a more appealing prospect to have a purpose-built facility in which to store the bike at the end of a journey.

 

Folding bike lockers are therefore a great solution, providing a lockable compartment to store a bicycle, helmet and kit bag. They are a necessity in a bike store if the needs of all cyclists are to be accommodated. A space-saving solution, they are supplied in stacks of three, parking three bikes in a relatively small footprint. They can be integrated with existing key fobs or electronic lock systems for consistency across a site. Contact us at Turvec if you’re interested in having one installed in your local area or workplace.

 

So, if the only thing stopping you from investing in a folding bike is how much you love your current bicycle, think about all the advantages they offer the commuter. If nothing else, the portability and security options available to them makes them a strong prospect, and what keeps their current riders dedicated.

 

Cycle parking dimensions

When planning the layout of a cycle store, the determining factor for spacing is the size of a bicycle. Internationally recognised standards for the size of a bicycle are as follows:

1800mm long, 1200mm high and 700mm wide.

Although a number of bicycle designs are smaller than this, when designing a store there should always be allowance for bicycles of all sizes or a parking space cannot be considered to have been provided.

To accommodate bicycles in a higher density format than the width that handlebars require, spaces must be staggered in a high-low positioning to prevent ‘clashing points’. The higher space should be 200-300mm higher than the lower space, this will prevent handlebar clashes and allow bicycles to be parked closer together, saving space.

From this data, it can be calculated that two-tier racks require a minimum height of 2600mm. If one large bicycle is parked above another (2400mm) the next space in the row must be staggered higher than the last to prevent clashing points as discussed above. This data determines the ceiling height required for double-stacker parking to be 2600mm.

If you have any questions regarding cycle parking dimensions for your project contact a member of our team for advice and planning assistance.

Cycle parking design guidance

There are a number of reputable cycle parking design guides online. We have included links to the most commonly referenced below.

When working from one of these guidelines, remember that not every product specification is equivalent in each ‘category’. Two-tier cycle parking for example will often feature generic guidance about spacing or loading meters, however there are significant variations in specification and requirements for these racks. The manufacturer or supplier should always be consulted for detailed recommendations on layouts and design rather than relying solely on a design guide.

Since some of these guidances were written, two-tier racks have developed significantly and gas-assisted lifting is now widely available, this means the racks are far more accessible than early double height systems.

Find below commonly referred cycle parking design guidance:

Double height bike storage

Double height cycle racks are a great option when faced with limited space to store a large number of bicycles. Double height storage positions one bike directly on top of another, doubling the parking capacity of an area.

This space-saving benefit is achieved through a pull-down tray on which a cyclist can load their bicycle, lifting the tray back onto the upper tier.

These systems have been criticised as difficult to use in the past. This difficulty has come from some cyclists struggling to lift their bicycle onto the upper tier. A method of preventing this difficulty is to select a system with gas-assisted lifting, this is available on several two-tier racks, and the addition means anyone can use the top level, as the gas spring carries the weight of their bicycle.

Bike Storage Design

Maximising the space you have available for cycle parking is an increasing priority across the different sectors that install storage facilities. However, it’s also essential to consider the needs of cyclists and deliver a user-friendly cycle store when planning a parking facility.

Residential cycle stores and railway stations often utilise large numbers of two-tier racks to achieve the required number of parking spaces. High capacity racking systems must be used in these environments, but designing suitably wide corridors for cyclists to manoeuvre and turn bicycles while parking is equally essential.

Too often, this is neglected, and cycle stores are installed with insufficient loading distances and corridor width. Issues can include:

  • no gas-assisted lifting, a vital safety feature;
  • poor quality steel box section and welding;
  • no support for parked bicycles;
  • racks do not lower close enough to the ground; and
  • tray runs on the inside of the runner, increasing friction and noise.

We recommend the following are taken into account during your initial planning process:

  • loading distance for the rack (ask the manufacturer for a recommended dimensions);
  • corridor width for passing and turning bicycles;
  • the height of a cycle store can determine whether or not double-height racks are appropriate; and
  • utilising the cycle store planning service from a bicycle parking company.

For a further rundown on correct dimensions and other comprehensive information on double-height storage installation, visit our cycle storage guide.

Tiered Cycle Storage Demonstration 

The Design is the Limit

When it comes to space utilisation and getting the most out of your investment into this style of cycle storage, the design is your limit. These storage units will be made to your specifications, space and need. If you’re looking for more intensive security, then there are lockable variations. You can leave your cycle in duplicate safety, a lock, an individual wrack and behind a gate. 

If you want your facility to be tech-enabled, then a cycle hub or a rack equipped with cycle sensors may fit your imagination. When it comes to zero worries for cycle owners, there are plenty of extra security features you can include. 

Looking For Ideas?

We’ve been fortunate enough to have been included in multiple tiered cycle storage projects, here’s an example of our two-tiered cycle rack being installed at Magdelen College in Oxford.

 

Bike parking space dimensions

UK bicycles vary significantly in size and style. Working from recommended dimensions will provide a safe and usable space to park bikes of all shapes and sizes.

The bike parking space dimensions you’ll find here we’ve put together based on our experience and common standards.

Bike parking dimensions in m

Length – 1.8m

Handlebar allowance – 0.75m

Bike parking dimensions in cm

Length – 180cm

Handlebar allowance – 75cm

Bike parking dimensions in mm

Length – 1800mm

Handlebar allowance – 750mm

 

Using Sheffield stands (or similar)?

If you’re going to use Sheffield stands in your cycle store, that’s when you’ll have to consider the dimensions required between each parking space. One bicycle can be parked either side of a single Sheffield stand.

We recommend 1000mm between each stand for maximum usability. However, the London Cycling Design Standards from TFL increase this to 1200mm, and this may be appropriate in some circumstances. In some private cycle stores, it may be acceptable to reduce this distance, and a toast rack will usually feature a distancing less than 1000mm.

 

Are you planning to use space-saving racks?

When planning a bicycle store using space-saving racks such as the Cobra or 2ParkUp, the stand provides clearly defined parking spaces. Where there are pre-defined measurements, as with these products, you shouldn’t have to worry about measurement requirements.

Always check the manufacturer’s included measurements, and if you’re in any doubt, contact them.

Every circumstance is different, contact us for more information or to aid in planning a cycle store.

Why Install Wall Mounted Cycle Storage?

Wall-mounted bike storage is one of the most space-efficient cycle storage options available.

  • They keep floor space clear of obstacles.
  • They work indoors and outdoors.
  • They support the front wheel of the cycle to ensure no damage and minimum frame pressure.
  • They maintain the cleanliness of the floor.
  • They’re super fast to install and cost-friendly.
  • They fit all styles of bicycle.

They have Security and Aesthetics Covered

Vertical bike racks vary in complexity from simple wall hooks for your garage at home to more secure options used in public stores, where cyclists can lock both their wheel and frame to the rack. In communal bike stores, a locking point should always be included.

For Best Results, Take Loading Distances Into Consideration

When you’re planning to park bicycles on a wall, the best designs vary on a site to site basis (think: how many bikes are being stored? Will there be one or two rows?) a general guide of 1500mm to 2000mm is a good starting point.

 Wall-Mounted Rack VS Traditional Toast Racks

Although vertical bike racks are a great solution that can create more space in a bike store or secure public parking, they require a cyclist to bear the entire weight of their bicycle. Lifting a bike is not something everyone can do, which is where their main weakness lies.

If you’re going to install a vertical option, we’d always advise the use of floor accessible parking, like the toast rack. Riders of all abilities can access these.

If you’re looking to install your new mounted cycle parking and would like some friendly guidance, call, or contact our offices today.

Where to locate new cycle parking

The location of new cycle parking is just as important as the choice of product. We advise that cycle parking should be;

  • Accessible

Cycle parking facilities should be designed with cyclists in mind. For example in basement stores stair ramps should be installed to prevent cyclists struggling to carry their bikes down the stairs. If a cycle store is access controlled, how will the cyclist use their access card to enter the store when wheeling their bike? Is the door wide enough to manoeuvre a bicycle through?

  • Visible

Cycle storage is often located outdoors, around the back of buildings or down a side passage. These unmonitored areas can raise cycle security concerns as bicycles can be tampered with out of sight. Preferably position new racks in full view of windows or off a busy street, if this is not possible security lighting and cameras should be considered.

  • Covered

Ideally all cycle parking should be covered, it’s better for the longevity of bikes and a lot more appealing for cyclists when they know their bicycle will remain dry when parked! Outdoor stores should be covered with a shelter, with different options available from open sided shelters to fully enclosed weatherproof units.

 

High-density cycle parking

When selecting a high-density cycle rack it is important to understand the different spacing options available and which of these options best suits your requirements. The dimensions below reflect the centre to centre distances between bicycle parking spaces in various systems.

375mm

The most high-density spacing widely available on two-tier racks and a selection of single level systems. 375mm spacing prevents handlebars from clashing through high-low arrangement of spaces, but larger bicycles with panniers would not find this the most user-friendly arrangement.

400mm

This is the optimum spacing to accommodate bicycles of all sizes. If the area for the racks will permit 400mm spacing, we recommend it over 375mm for its added user-friendliness.

500mm

This larger spacing is available on a number of two-tier racks, and allows significant distance for cyclists to park their bicycles with no chance of the handlebars clashing between spaces.

Bike rack specifications

Toast racks

Cycle toast racks are one of the most cost effective forms of cycle parking available. They comprise of a series of Sheffield stands bolted to a fixed rail to provide a number of parking spaces from a single fixed unit.

High-density racks

There are various high-density racks available, such as the Turvec Mamba and Cobra. These racks provide clearly defined parking spots for bicycles, keeping them upright and secure in a space-saving layout.

Semi-vertical racks

Semi-vertical racks are a high capacity design that positions the bike on its rear wheel. Note that the user must lift their bicycle onto the rack, bearing the entire weight whilst doing so.

Two-tier racks

These racks double stack bikes above one another to maximise the parking capacity of an area, the ideal solution for high capacity cycle storage.

Vertical racks

Vertical bike racks position bikes hanging on a wall, these can be difficult for some cyclists to use, so alternative more accessible parking should also be considered in the same store.

Wheel holder racks

These should be avoided if possible. They offer limited security and can damage the front wheel of a bicycle as cyclists wedge them into the rack.

Cycle storage loading distances

To ensure cycle storage is both safe and easy to use, it is important to consider appropriate loading distances to park bicycles. If corridor widths are too small cyclists will find it difficult to manoeuvre their bicycle into position or pass each other in the store.

Loading distances vary dependant on the product used and the context of the installation.

  • How many rows of cycle racks?
  • Where are the entrances to the cycle store?
  • What type of system is being installed?

For example, in larger stores a greater corridor width would be recommended. With multiple rows of cycle racks it’s more likely that cyclists would meet in the corridor whilst parking or collecting their bike, and therefore a larger aisle is required.

Every circumstance is different, and a cycle store planning service should always be considered. A guideline aisle width for single level cycle storage is around 1500mm, two tier cycle rack guidelines can be found here.

Small loading distances can deem cycle parking unsafe and unusable, if you have any doubts about the requirements for your new cycle parking, do not hesitate to contact us.

 

Gas assisted two tier cycle stands

A gas spring bears the weight of a bicycle during the loading and unloading of the upper level on two tier cycle stands.

  • This important feature means that top tier parking spaces are accessible to cyclists of all abilities, as they are able to park their bicycle without having to physically lift it onto the upper level
  • Without a gas spring, some cyclists may struggle to load their bicycle into the parking space
  • A gas spring also acts as a noise reducing feature. This is an issue that can arise with non-gas two tier systems when the lowering of trays can be very loud.
  • Gas springs have a long lifespan, the 2ParkUp is tested to 20,000 movements with and without a bike, ensuring that the spring does not loose its strength over time.

Required dimensions for a double stacked cycle rack?

Two-tier systems double the parking capacity of an area, occupying half the floor space usually required by single level stands or racks.

It is not one size fits all, as each system varies the area in question must have the correct sizing requirements to accommodate a double decker parking system.

Floor to ceiling height

  • This is dictated by the size of the bicycles being stacked in the system. UK bikes are smaller than Dutch style bicycles, and a comfortable guide size is between 1050mm and 1100mm tall.
  • For a UK installation, a clearance of 2600mm is the minimum for most systems, but in order to future proof the installation and to ensure larger bikes can be accommodated a recommended height is 2750mm.
  • Remember to account for any services that may intrude along the ceiling of the store.

Loading dimensions

  • Two tier systems require a greater loading distance than single level cycle storage. Space must be allocated for the lowering of the upper tray, and then the loading of the bicycle onto that tray.
  • A recommended loading distance around 2100mm, this can be reduced to 1800mm in certain circumstances, dependant on the size of the store and the number of rows. Contact our design team for further advice on this issue.
  • Certain systems can be manufactured at 45 degrees to reduce loading distances.

Width

  • Two tier racks are available in a number of spacing variants, the most common is 400mm with 375mm and 500mm also available on the market. The larger the spacing, the greater the size of bike can be accommodated in the rack.
  • If space is not an issue, we recommend 400mm distancing, as it’s both space-efficient and the most cyclist friendly option.

Space efficient bike storage – what are the options?

When faced with limited space for new cycle parking, options are limited. However there are a number of solutions available to store bikes in small spaces and finding the right solution is dependant on the individual space.

Two-tier

This space-saving solution doubles the cycle storage capacity of an area, occupying half the floor space of traditional cycle racks. If a system with gas-assisted lifting is selected, it will be just as user-friendly as a conventional storage. Two-tier systems can only be considered when the area has sufficient loading distance and height requirements.

Semi-vertical racks

Semi-vertical racks position bikes at an angle against a wall. This system saves some floor space over sheffield stands or toast racks, and allows bikes to be stored in narrower areas. Please note when selecting a semi-vertical system that the user must bear the entire weight of their bicycle when loading the rack.

Wall mounted racks

There are several wall mounted racking systems available, these vary in sophistication from simple front wheel hooks to lockable systems that pivot on hinges to save even more space.

Before selecting a wall rack, consider whether a locking point is necessary for the area you are positioning the bikes, is it a public or private space? Who will have access? Again the user must bear the weight of their bicycle, so please take this into consideration.

High-capacity racks

Other racking systems such as the Turvec Cobra offer a space-saving benefit over a standard toast rack specification. If possible, consider a double-sided Cobra layout to fully maximise available space.