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Larger cycle parking space dimensions

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. 

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.

 

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.

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.

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

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.

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.

 

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.

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.

Award winning business

Over the past month Turvec has attended a number of award ceremonies in our localities of Wales and Essex. We were shortlisted as Wales Services Start-Up of the year, Powys Start-Up Business 2016 and as finalists for the Essex Big Business Boost.

We are delighted to announce that Turvec won the ‘one to watch award’ at the Wales Start-Up awards in Cardiff, the evening celebrated the successes of new companies across Wales and we are thrilled to have been recognised by the experienced judging panel.

Workplace cycle parking

Recent Cambridge University research claims that 85% of cycling increase can be attributed to new infrastructure. Their findings state new, efficient cycle routes with fewer junctions led to a quicker overall journey time for commuters.

Both our Chelmsford and Mid Wales offices now have Turvec cycle parking outside. Pictured below are galvanised Turvec sheffield stands at our Chelmsford office, and our unique Cobra cycle rack at the Mid-Wales office.

For workplace travel plans, or further information on encouraging sustainable methods of travel, take a look at the website of our partner Modeshift, or click here for the journey planner on the Modeshift Stars website.  Information on the Government’s cycle to work scheme can be found here

How Can Bike Storage Increase Your Home Quality Mark (BRE)

Thanks to a government-backed initiative in 2015, cycle storage can now make your series of new-build properties vastly more appealing. With a 5-star Home Quality Rating from BRE, you’ll see interest in your new-builds skyrocket. With the right type of storage, you can be on your way to providing quality housing, we’ll explain how

What Is The Home Quality Mark?

The scheme is a UK certification scheme for new sustainable homes backed by a third party. The goal of the certification is to achieve better new-builds across the UK. Households receive a star rating out of five which encompasses assessments for the sustainability for:

  • The home itself.
  • The home’s surroundings.
  • The delivery of the project.

How We Can Help You Build Better Homes

The surroundings assessment for this certification looks at transport, movement, safety and resilience. Ticking those boxes with secure, accessible cycle storage that is in keeping with the surrounding aesthetic will put you one step closer to achieving that five-star rating; cycle storage is worth up to six credits.

Differentiate Your Homes From Others on The Market

With consumers looking for sustainability and longevity in their new-home purchases, obtaining one of these ratings is an excellent way to have you stand out from the crowd.

Nothing has really changed in the way your customers think about home. They might not yet realise all the potential a new-build can offer them. You can get the advantage by offering higher quality and better housing, and we’d love to help you achieve that.

For more information on how we can help, or to learn more about our role in the scheme, contact or call our offices today.