Sunday, June 29, 2008

My cycling in Singapore experiences - Cycling path

Actually, I am not too supportive about having cycling paths. I like to see more cycling friendly infrastructures, and also more pedestrian friendly ones. I feel that cycling path is not necessary cycling friendly, nor promote safety for pedestrians.

More importantly, it also gives a false sense of security. A danger for cycling on pedestrian path is ... being out of the concern area of drivers, which is also a danger for cycling on cycling paths. Another results I guess is for cyclists to speed on cycling paths.

Also, with cycling path, there will be a new problem: getting cyclists to be patience with pedestrians who may walk on them for whatever good or bad reasons. Some friends have experienced being pushed, or having cyclists sped by them very closely because they were walking on the cycling paths in Berlin unknowingly.

I really hope efforts are directed to achieving safety for all, instead of just simply implement or build something to please either the pedestrian and/or the motorists.

Personally, I think by simply making the left most lane more cyclists friendly, by slight widening it or removing bumpiness due to those holes for water to flow off the road, is good enough for me. This won't irritate the pedestrians and reduce the challenge for vehicles to overtake cyclists on the road.

Another cheaper way is to identify and label certain pedestrian paths very unsuitable for cycling based on criteria such as high human traffic, wide left most lane, or a narrow pedestrian path, etc., and allow cyclists use the unlabeled ones, w/o the need to spend unnecessary resources to build cycling paths.

Hope they allow cyclists the choice of using either the road, the cycling path, OR those suitable pedestrian paths, but not force cyclists off the road altogether. Thus, for roads w/o cycling path or suitable pedestrian path for cycling, the message would become road is the only place for bicycle.

PS: the above are modified from my comments on the posts, Cycling in Singapore: The Northside goes One Up against the Eastside and One Less Car: One More Step to Marginalisation, where I found this page with literatures that also suggest the danger of having cycling paths.

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