- High level cycling inquiry needed
- Capital's cycling in line for triple funding boost
- Don't forget the CAN Shop for Xmas presents
- Time to transform transport network
- Landmark 'Active Travel Act' passed in Wales
- Happier countries cycle more, says UN report
- Economic gains of cycling outlined
- Hi-vis does little to prevent dangerous overtaking
- Cycling laws overhauled in Queensland
14 November 2013- An inquiry into cycling, recommended by Coroner Gordon Matenga, should go much wider than a safety panel led by the NZ Transport Agency, say cycling advocates.
Getting more people on bikes will deliver huge benefits to all New Zealanders, so we need a high-level Public Inquiry to make the most of the opportunity, say the Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN).
A focus solely on cycling safety is unlikely to produce the best result, says CAN spokesperson Patrick Morgan. "Cycling is not a problem to be solved, but a significant opportunity to deliver a range of benefits: tourism, health, transport, clean air, liveable cities, safer streets, and recreational activities for all ages."
An inquiry into cycling should examine all these benefits and how we can work together to achieve them. The 'Get Britain Cycling' report from the UK's All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group offers a useful model, says Mr Morgan.
"Making cycling safer, convenient and attractive should be a top priority for New Zealand, if we want a healthy and prosperous future. With one and a half million New Zealanders already on their bikes, there's huge demand for protected cycle lanes, safer speeds and effective education of all road users."
"London and many other cities have achieved massive growth in cycling thanks to leadership and investment. We can do the same here."
4 December 2013- The Wellington City Council has signalled it's serious about improving the Capital's cycle safety and strategic cycling networks after announcing a potential tripling of the cycling budget in the draft Annual Plan for 2014/15.
In a paper to be released this week, it is recommended the cycling budget for 2014/15 be increased from $1.3 million to $4.3 million, an increase of 230 per cent. Subject to public consultation, the funding would focus on delivering strategic cycling routes and improving cycle safety city-wide.
Mayor Celia Wade-Brown said that, if agreed, the funding boost would be transformative for Wellington.
"Wellington has enormous potential to become one of the world's great cycling destinations, both as an adventure tourism attraction and for commuter choice," she said.
Read more here:
Support CAN and cycling by purchasing some lovely cycle gear as presents for your loved ones from our website. Order by 17 December for it to get to you in time.
There are our famous yellow backpack covers, our orange 'Think Globally, Cycle Locally' cycling vests (tested under extreme conditions on the 2009 Auckland Harbour Bridge crossing), "Freedom" t-shirts (price reduced), and the Spacemaker safety flag. Get in quick!
All available here:
or contact our merchandise coordinator, Lyneke Onderwater at firstname.lastname@example.org.
5 December 2013- Two visiting Dutch transport experts say Christchurch has the perfect opportunity to transform its transport network.
Leo de Jong and Mark Brussel, from the Netherlands, have spent several days in Christchurch assisting the city council with its plans to build 13 new cycleways over the next five years.
Brussel, a senior lecturer at the University of Twente, said now was the perfect time to make changes to the transport network as so much needed to be done anyway due to the earthquakes.
"You cannot continue as you are. The city will grow and congestion will continue to worsen," Brussel said.
The way the infrastructure had been developed in Dutch cities meant the average trip was faster by bike than car, so cycling was the preferred travel method.
The fact that it was green and healthy was a benefit, "but the primary purpose of any transport system is to get to a destination".
Read more here:
1 October 2013- A landmark law requiring Welsh councils to create walking and cycling networks to increase has been passed by Assembly Members.
The Active Travel (Wales) Act will require local authorities to draw up networks, new design standards for routes and require annual debates and reports in the Senedd to make sure progress has been made.
It would also require councils to take account of pedestrians and cyclists when they make improvements to, or redesign, public highways.
But the legislation has drawn concerns that its effectiveness will be limited by a lack of commitment to direct funding for councils to implement any plans, with cycling charity Sustrans previously saying Wales would need to treble its currently funding, per head, to be aligned with a recent scheme announced for 10 English cities.
But the Welsh Government insisted that £12m was already available for funding such routes.
Culture and Sport Minister John Griffiths, who has responsibility for walking and cycling policy, said in a debate at the National Assembly last night that the legislation had brought Wales to the attention of cyclists across the world and would improve health and well-being, as well as environmental benefits.
Read more here:
23 November 2013- The "World Happiness Report" is a study by the United Nations' Sustainable Development Solutions Network, aiming to determine the levels of perceived happiness in the countries according to a set of criteria ranging from average income to mental wellness to freedom of movement and action.
The European Cycling Federation (ECF) has opinions on how certain policies (namely pro-cycling measures) can improve the people's well being, thus their productivity and the economy as a whole. Therefore, it came as little surprise to them that the world's happiest countries rank at the very first places also in the ECF Cycling Barometer. In other words: the more a country rides, the happier it is.
Read more here:
21 November 2013- The head of the chamber of commerce of Denver, Colorado says that city's improvements to cycling infrastructure have had a positive effect on the city's brand and economy, although it was difficult to measure the exact impact.
Denver is adding protected cycle lanes as part of its economic development strategy to upgrade and provide more choice in transportation around the city, rather than primarily as a safety measure, but there was plenty Dunedin could take from Denver's approach, participants in an online conference, or webinar, hosted at the University of Otago yesterday were told.
Read more here:
26 November 2013- A new study from the University of Bath and Brunel University suggests that no matter what clothing a cyclist wears, around 1-2% of drivers will pass dangerously close when overtaking.
This suggests there is little a rider can do, by altering their outfit or donning a high-visibility jacket, to prevent the most dangerous overtakes from happening. Instead, the researchers suggest, if we want to make cyclists safer, it is our roads, or driver behaviour, that need to change.
The study set out to ask whether drivers passing a cyclist responded to how experienced the cyclist looked. It was expected that drivers would give more space to a rider who seemed inexperienced and less space to a rider who looked highly skilled.
The researchers found that, while using a vest that mentioned video-recording showed a small increase in the average amount of space drivers left, there was no difference between the outfits in the most dangerous overtakes, where motorists passed within 50 cm of the rider.
Dr Ian Walker, who led the project, says: "We can't make cycling safer by telling cyclists what they should wear. Rather, we should be creating safer spaces for cycling - perhaps by building high-quality separate cycle paths, by encouraging gentler roads with less stop-start traffic, or by making drivers more aware of how it feels to cycle on our roads and the consequences of impatient overtaking."
Read more here:
2 December 2013- Queensland's cycling rules are set for an overhaul, including a safe distance provision and harsher penalties for breaking road rules.
The Transport, Housing and Local Government committee put forward 68 recommendations, after the first major examination of cycling laws in more than 20 years.
The recommendations will need to be approved by Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson before they can be implemented. Mr Emerson said he will take a few months to consider the full report, but gave his full support to "recommendation 8, or the so-called one-metre rule."
"This will mean that motorists must maintain a minimum distance of one metre when passing a cyclist in a 60 km/h or less zone, and 1.5 metres when travelling above 60."
Read more here:
Bridging the gap: urban design guidelines from NZTA:
Floating circular cycle bridge: speaking of bridging, check out this piece of stunning cycle infrastructure in Eindhoven, the Netherlands:
Bicycle Ministry to promote cycling in Japan:
Cyclists and Cycling Around the World: a new book on creating liveable, bikeable cities:
Bike trains in Los Angeles: individuals who commute by bike together:
How safe are the world's cities for cyclists?
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Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) is New Zealand's voice for cyclists. We want to see cycling become an everyday activity in NZ. CAN's membership includes experienced cyclists, advocates, engineers, planners, local and regional councils, bike shops, and local advocacy groups throughout the country.
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