Cycling should be for everyone. But we’ve still got some way to go to ensure that cycle parking caters for all.
We’ve been in touch with Wheels for Wellbeing, a UK charity whose mission is to ensure that Disabled people can access the manifold benefits of cycling, and they’ve helped us outline the areas within cycle parking that need addressing.
“Accessible cycle parking is as important as accessible cycling infrastructure for Disabled cyclists,” say Wheels for Wellbeing
“If a Disabled cyclist cannot be sure that they will be able to leave their cycle somewhere secure when they reach their destination, cycling will be limited to leisure or exercise, rather than for everyday journeys.”
At Turvec, we know a thing or two about cycle parking, but we’re always looking for ways we can improve the usability of our products – making certain that cycling really is for all.
Sometimes, installations are driven more so by a previous design, or to simply fill a numbers requirement. We always look to work closely with clients to make sure we’re providing a quality, functional cycle store, and this includes removing barriers and improving our design for Disabled cyclists.
Cycle parking barriers and shortcomings
So what’s working, or not working, for Disabled cyclists?
“Stacked two-tier cycle racks are suitable solely for two-wheeled standard cycles and require upper-body strength and dexterity to use,” say Wheels for Wellbeing.
Despite good quality two-tier racks which employ a gas-strut to help with lifting, these racks are unusable for a number of Disabled cyclists. But, as Wheels for Wellbeing explain, it’s not just two-tier racks.
“Many forms of enclosed cycle parking – such as hangers, lockers, or larger secure cycle shelters – require a level of mobility and physical strength that a Disabled cyclist may not have (for example, the ability to open heavy metal gates, or push a cycle round a restricted space), or be located too far from the final destination,” say the charity.
On top of this, when the right parking is indeed provided, it’s frequently unavailable for those who really need it.
“Even if the provided cycle parking is accessible (for example, a Sheffield stand with sufficient room for a tricycle), if a Disabled cyclist arrives and finds the space occupied, they are unlikely to be able to secure their cycle to a nearby lamp-post,” say Wheels for Wellbeing.