Here's a video of a rainy day trip heading south on the Kent St Cycleway. You don't have to watch it - just skip to the text below if you like:


I counted the number of vehicles heading north:

  • Cycleway: 21 bikes
  • Roadway: 58 cars, trucks and motorbikes.

That's a ratio of 2.76 motor vehicles for every bike.

So what proportion of the street is devoted to the roadway compared to the cycleway?

Here I'm estimating a little; for about two thirds of the trip there is one northbound lane on the road, and for the remainder there are two northbound lanes. Each roadway lane is approximately 2.2 times wider than a lane on the cycleway.

This leads to the following calculation to determine the roadway to cycleway space allocation:

(0.33 x 2 x 2.2) + (0.67 x 2.2) = 2.95 square metres for motor vehicles for every one square metre for bikes.

Conclusion: there are fewer motor vehicles than bicycles per square metre on Kent St. On a rainy day!

So much for the "people aren't using the cycleways" line. Imagine how these numbers would look on a sunny day, and once the cycleway network is a little more connected.

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Great movie.

Whats that 27% of the traffic in that video is created by cyclists?

I'm bad with numbers.

I remember going past that taxi stopped over the curb in the cycle lane! I must have been on the same stretch at about the same time. Didn't see myself in the video though.


I often idly count the cars waiting at junctions compared to the bikes. There are frequently more bikes than cars - however the cars take up huge amount of road space. 15 cars makes a substantial traffic queue that takes a long time to clear a junction. 15 bikes are moving and over the lights in just a few seconds.


I really think people underestimate how many cyclists there are because they move through the city so efficiently. I also think they over-estimate the number of cars - it doesn't take many motorists to create gridlock - just a few dozen is enough to snarl up a junction.

15 bikes are moving and over the lights in just a few seconds.

Is that why we only get a tiny fraction of the green time given to the road congesters? Again, cyclists subsidise motorists.

Colin, have you sent these very telling figures to Dunc Gay and Gladys ? You could also mention the number of bikes parked beside the path -- I noticed at least three in the first block.

Did you count the number of pedestrians? They should rip up another lane, and turn it into a footpath.

Did you also count the parked cars? They should rip up another lane, and turn it into a carpark.


Just kidding.

Why don't you send that to some of the naysayers? 

I nearly bloody drowned on the Kent St cycleway the other night it was raining so hard. It turned into the Tank Stream.

Because it also shows out of 8 bikes actually shown at a red traffic light only 3 actually have stopped.

Nice analysis of a FANTASTIC video :)


FYI - there may be some up coming research on lane spacing & light phasing of bicycles vs cars...

When the cycleways are linked, it's quite conceivable that bikes will out number cars.

In that case we should campaign to rip up the roads ,

or ban cars during peak times

or make the roads a SUP and enforce a 10km/h on cars and they have to give way to pedestrians.

Not sure I would want to have to ride at 10kph but a  CBD permit for peak hour would help as they have in Singapore.


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