10 January 2011

International Bicycle Infrastructure: Sancti Petri, Spain

Copenhagen bike lane in Spain
Our friend and fashion blogger Raquel from Gratis Total in Spain is also a prolific bike culture correspondant for Copenhagenize.com. Whenever she travels around Spain she photographs the various facilities.

She took this photo of a "Copenhagen lane" on her summer holidays. Not in any large European city, it is worth mentioning, but in a lovely little town called Sancti Petri in the Cadiz province in the South of Spain. Not far from Gibraltar.

Copenhagen bike lane in Spain
"The bicycle is used for everything in this area. For shopping, for going out at night and for going to the beach", she reports. Sounds like a Copenhagenize hotspot to us.

biking to the beach in Spain

9 comments:

shuichi said...

Eh, people there seem to relax riding bicycles. A dad sits his child in the rear child seat. I like it. By the way, I felt the difference between fashioned photos and these bicycles' photos, it is just my opinion, maybe, the area in Spain should be suitable for relaxing. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I see a door-zone bike lane and lots of (albeit parked) cars.

Eneko Astigarraga said...

I think this bike lane cannot be related to those you have in Copenhagen. First of all for its width: impossible to overtake. Second: there is no safety buffer to avoid dooring.

I find it too hazardous to be shown as an example of bike lane.

Not every bicycle lane is supposed to be good only for being a bicycle lane. A little bit of criteria is needed.

Two added questions:

- What does it connect?
- What problem is it solving?

Congrats for this blog, Mikael.

Anonymous said...

Eneko, don't come here playing the nice card, we all know down here what you are (a radical vehicular) and what you stand for.

Green Idea Factory said...

I like good paths but that bike path is very poorly-designed. I like Mikael when he is being critical, not being a cheerleader. If that path was implemented in Copenhagen it would be attacked. Questions? Analysis? Do we know if some of the people who locals who like good bike paths are happy with this? Do we know the speed limit on this street? Are we patronizing the Spanish by jumping for joy for something which is very clearly second-rate?

Private high-speed automobilism (by the way I see a huge amount of private cars stored here in these photos) is stupid and destructive and - let's be honest - separated bike infrastructive is necessary if you are a sheep (most of us, me most of the time) and accept private high-speed automobilism. However, it is true that in some places (NL but not just) bikes can have more and freer access than motor vehicles. David Hembrow also rightly points out that it is the case in e.g. commute hours that bikes can move in their space whilst cars are jammed. But this is a failure for car transport and all those fumes and energy wastage also effect cyclists!

Nearly free access for private, high speed automobilism is stupid, and arguing against separated infrastructure is stupid if you accept the first.

Carfree cities now! (Shared cars with speed limiters on certain streets, delivery vehicles also with speed limiters in restricted hours and emergency vehicles exempted*).

Let's free ourselves from our double dogma! Doable?

* I would accept separation in a carfree city for the youngest riders, by choice, only to keep them off the pavement (sidewalk).

Green Idea Factory said...

Update: Oh, I see this street has a 50km/h limit. Why is this? Seems narrow -- a street which would be 30km in many places, but to be fair it seems like it might have been narrowed by about 3m when the bike path was implemented.

Paul M said...

Yes, the narrowness and the parked cars create a dooring risk, and a good few bloggers in the UK would dismiss this as a "crap" facility.

Our advocacy groups would simply dismiss it on the basis that a mediocre cycle facility is worse than no facility at all. If most people were however to be asked, would you prefer (a) a mediocre facility or (b) no facility, I think most would answer (a) despite its shortcomings - would a naked man in a blizzard refuse the offer of a wool coat, because it wasn't cashmere?

Green Idea Factory said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Green Idea Factory said...

Paul M: That is nonsense. Who would tolerate a plane with an engine which might not work, a train with questionable brakes or a ship with a tendency to leak a lot?

Bad analogy. That wool coat is not only intentionally mislabeled as cashmere... it's contaminated.

I hope those people stay away from designing any kind of infrastructure or vehicles.