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Archive for the ‘Exhibition’ Category

citycycling .issue 48 – Now Online

Posted by chdot on June 5, 2009

Includes participant’s report on last Saturday’s folding bike race.

Posted in Active Travel, City of Edinburgh Council, citycycling, commuting, cycle racing, Cycling News, Cycling Scotland, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Edinburgh, ERC, Exhibition, Physical Activity and Health | Leave a Comment »

Edinburgh Council Signs Cycle Treaty!

Posted by chdot on May 26, 2009


brussels treaty

City of Edinburgh Council is often criticised for the gap between its (sometimes lukewarm) pro-cycling rhetoric and the realities in the streets. Manifesto pledges for a ‘model cycling city’ are, so far, little more than words.

Things may be about to change. Fairly new Head of Transport Marshall Poulton travelled to Brussels (probably not by bike) to sign the new Charter of Brussels. Surprisingly Edinburgh is the UK’s first city to adopt its principles. (Even accident avoiding London Mayor Boris Johnson missed out on this photo opportunity.)

Marshall and CEC Cycling Officer Chris Brace were in Belgium for Velo-city 2009 – the latest version of the assembly of cycle planners and campaigners that was hosted by Edinburgh and Glasgow in 2001.

The key passage that Edinburgh has agreed to says: “To set a target of at least 15% for the share of cycling in the modal split of trips for the year 2020 and of further growth if this target already is achieved.”

The truth is this is hugely ambitious – but not impossible. The current share is closer to 5%. The target doesn’t necessarily mean a tripling of cycling (though that would be nice). Less car use will need to be a significant factor. More passenger journeys on public transport will be beneficial to all road users, but will do little to shift the balance between 5% and 15%.

Politicians (local and national) have to grasp the reality that having accepted that it is a ‘good thing’ to encourage cycling it will require a significant change in attitudes – AND money. More people need to feel that cycling on normal roads is ‘safe’. There is little scope in Edinburgh for many segregated cycle lanes on existing roads. Maintaining the current on-road cycle lanes properly would be a good start.

Cycle Training for all pupils (in school time) should be implemented as part of the new Curriculum for Excellence. Widespread availability of practical training/encouragement for adults (especially parents of school age children) would be a good idea.

Politicians have to stop believing that voters=motorists. Even where that is true they are also pedestrians, cyclists, shoppers, parents of children too young to drive, children of people too old to drive, etc.

The Charter ends:

“Furthermore, the signers of this charter call upon all authorities worldwide, at all levels to strongly promote cycling and to incorporate cycling into all areas of policy (health, spatial planning, city management, economy, mobility and traffic, leisure, sports, tourism).”

Earlier this year Copenhagen brought an exhibition (Dreams on Wheels) about its cycling vision to the Botanics. Perhaps in a few years Edinburgh will be able to justifiably boast about its own achievements.

Posted in Active Travel, Bicycle Film Festival, bike security theft, bike shops, Bike Week, Bikes on trains, ChangingPace, Chris Hoy, City of Edinburgh Council, citycycling, Climate Change, commuting, Core Path Network, critical mass, cycle parking, cycle racing, cycle training, Cycling News, Cycling Scotland, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Demonstration Towns, Edinburgh, EducatedTravel, European Moblity Week, Exhibition, Forth Bridge Route Campaign, Glasgow, HEALTH, holidays, Lothian Buses, Maps, Meadowbank Velodrome, paths, Peak Oil, Physical Activity and Health, ride, Safe Routes to School, Safety, Spokes, Spokes maps, Sustrans, technology, Trams, TryCycling, walking | 2 Comments »

Saturday Morning Ride to IKEA on the Cargo Bike

Posted by chdot on May 5, 2009

ikeatour
Photo copenhagenize.com

Of course we’re not talking Straiton here.

Saturday Morning Ride to IKEA on the Cargo Bike” is the latest post on the famous/delightful/groundbraking (sic) blog copenhagenize.com (subtitle “Life in the World’s Cycling Capital”).

Remarkably the photo shows various similarities with the stretch of dual carriageway at Burdiehouse where cyclists are encouraged to ride on the pavement. After that they have to deal with the turning for Lang Loan, the Bypass underpass, a roundabout and Midlothian (where IKEA is).

If you visited the stylish Dreams on Wheels exhibition at The Botanics earlier this year you will have some idea of what is possible when a local authority takes the idea of encouraging more people to ride bikes very seriously. 

You will also have been impressed by the photos of ‘ordinary’ people becoming mobile models in their daily lives . Such photos are collected on “our streetstyle sister blog” COPENHAGEN CYCLE CHIC.


Posted in Active Travel, Art, City of Edinburgh Council, citycycling, Climate Change, commuting, Core Path Network, critical mass, cycle parking, Cycling News, Cycling Scotland, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Edinburgh, EducatedTravel, European Moblity Week, Exhibition, HEALTH, Midlothian, paths, Peak Oil, Physical Activity and Health, ride, Safety, walking | Leave a Comment »

Tag a Photo, Win a Prize

Posted by chdot on June 12, 2008


Photo taken at the Shore by blackpuddinonnabike

The internet is a dangerous, wonderful place – full of weird ideas and images. Like almost anything, it can be used in good and bad ways! This site wouldn’t exist without free (and easy) WordPress software. The ever changing strip of images on the right wouldn’t be visible without Flickr. You can now share your dodgy Mountain Bike crash video clips through You Tube (or higher quality versions with Vimeo).

It’s easy to show that cycling is ‘normal’ and ‘fun’ (usually at the same time!) or how it could be made better if facilities were improved. If you are a Flickr user you’ll already know, if not why not give it a try?

A couple of small prizes are on offer for interesting, arty, unusual or thought provoking images ‘to do with cycling’ taken and uploaded to Flickr between today (the start of Edinburgh’s Bike Week Film Festival) and the end of June.

The prizes are on offer from Edinburgh and Leith’s largest bike shops – Edinburgh Bicycle Co-op and the Leith Cycle Co. EBC has 5 branches in Scotland and England. LCC just its Leith Walk shop.

Photos need to be tagged EdinburghBicycle or LeithCycles. EdinburghBicycle tagged photos can be taken anywhere in the UK. LeithCycles ones should be taken in Leith (or close by) – or in some way related to Leith.

Why not brave the tram works on Leith Walk, count the pubs with outside seating (especially around the Shore) and sample the North Edinburgh Path Network and take some photos, upload to Flickr and tag. Even if you don’t win a prize it will have been worth it!

The Cycling in Edinburgh Flickr group has 99 members – the hundredth could be YOU.

Posted in Active Travel, Art, Bicycle Film Festival, bike shops, Bike Week, bikeweek, ChangingPace, citycycling, Core Path Network, cycle parking, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Demonstration Towns, Edinburgh, European Moblity Week, Exhibition, ride | 1 Comment »

Spokes is 100

Posted by chdot on June 3, 2008


Or at least its Leaflet/Bulletin has just published the hundredth edition. (See all the covers on Flickr.)

As well as all the usual news of successes (often due to the letters and e-mails of Spokes members) and failures (usually Governments’ – at all levels – inability to take cycling seriously), there’s the answer to questions that have puzzled people for years!

“Why A5?? / Why the small typeface??”

“No it’s not that Spokes is bankrupt or that cyclists have bionic eyes! It’s a matter of weight and bulk, for bike delivery. Each issue has 11000-12000 copies, to the above audiences plus bike shops, libraries, and some 500 organisations. Around 2500 envelopes are delivered by bike in Edinburgh and in Lothians towns! – the rest posted.”

So now you know.

Under the heading “The philosophy of the Bulletin” the first item is “Be positive and constructive! We’ll certainly criticise strongly when it’s due but we prefer to praise and thank.”

The last three words certainly apply to Dave du Feu. He of course will ascribe the very impressive success of Spokes to its active members. But without his meticulous collection and dissemination of news and information, much less would have been achieved over the past thirty years. It’s not clear if he plans to produce another 100 issues.

If you are a Spokes member you should get your Bulletin delivered shortly. If not, pick one up at your local bike shop, library etc. – or download the PDF.

In addition, to celebrate the last thirty years of Spokes, there is an exhibition at Edinburgh’s Central Library (George IV Bridge) which will run to the end of June.

Posted in Active Travel, bike shops, citycycling, Cycling News, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Edinburgh, Exhibition, Spokes | 1 Comment »

New Cycle Map

Posted by chdot on May 14, 2008


The latest map from Spokes is a new edition of the East Lothian one [buy on-line]. It’s a revised version of the original 2003 one. One noticeable addition is the controversial Dalkeith Bypass [A68] – mostly in Midlothian – due to open later this year.

At the northern end, the map marks a “proposed cycle link”. One useful feature of Spokes maps is the ability to highlight improvements that could be made. This particular one was identified by Spokes members.

It’s just a shame that the people who plan roads (this one has been on the go for at least ten years) aren’t as aware of low cost measures that might encourage cycling and, perhaps, reduce the need for even more roads. Maybe that is why useful alternatives aren’t investigated and provided…

Spokes has also made the covers of all its Newsletters and Bulletins available on-line. A fascinating snapshot of 30 years of campaigning. The summer 2008 edition will be the one hundredth! To mark this milestone, there will be an exhibition of the leaflets and other items in the Central Library on George IV Bridge.

Posted in Active Travel, commuting, Core Path Network, Cycling News, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Edinburgh, EducatedTravel, Exhibition, Maps, Midlothian, ride, Safety, Shawfair, Spokes, Spokes maps | 1 Comment »

It Could Be Leith

Posted by chdot on May 14, 2008


Councils throughout Scotland are waiting to hear if their “Smarter Choices, Smarter Places” bids have been successful. This new funding stream from the Scottish Government is for what have also been called ‘Travel Demonstration Communities’. (Background)

Initially it was assumed that Edinburgh would be ‘too big’, but the guidelines made it clear that any ‘recognisable community’ up to 100,000 would be eligible. Various options were considered, mostly in the north and east of the city.

It was clear that “Leith” was both a well established/recognisable area and also a good candidate for this programme. It’s on the edge of path networks heading both east and west and is also having a tramline built through the middle. This is due to be completed in 2011, which will coincide with the third year of this (initially) three year funded initiative.

The precise boundaries of “Leith” are open to interpretation. It once had fixed boundaries as Leith was a town until 1920. One line was drawn across the middle of Leith Walk. As a consequence, the Boundary Bar (now called The City Limits) had different closing times in each half!

Various possible boundaries were considered by the Council for its bid. The catchment area of Leith Academy was a possibility. Adding Trinity Academy’s catchment was another option. This would have demonstrated the importance of schools (particularly the feeder primaries) in changing travel habits. City of Edinburgh Council has a long standing Safer Routes to Schools programme which mixes physical measures – traffic calming, speed restrictions etc. – with ‘softer’ initiatives including producing School Travel Plans.

The area settled on for the bid is that of the (relatively) new Leith Neighbourhood Partnership (one of twelve across the city) which covers the Leith and Leith Walk wards (population about 44,000). This is sensible as it will involve an existing dedicated team with responsibility for, or oversight of, many areas that are crucial to this demonstration project. As well as improvements to infrastructure – improved walking and cycling routes and the extension of the bustracker scheme, significant effort is planned to go into marketing the many alternatives to private car use.

This will include Travel Plans aimed at large employers and ‘destinations’ and also smaller ones for families. The purpose of the project isn’t just to substitute one means of transport for another on existing journeys. The idea is to also improve and/or highlight local amenities such as parks and path networks. These are places where people can go for fun and exercise as well as ‘transport’. Places where children can practice riding their bikes and adults can gain the confidence to consider using their own bikes for journeys – perhaps to work.

One positive spin-off from the bid process (even if it is not successful) is that there is now a recognition within the Council that not only do existing paths have to be promoted more – not least with appropriate signage – but money has to be spent on maintenance. Too often in the past ‘capital’ money has been spent without enough thought for the ‘revenue’ implications. One proposal is for a “ranger team” for the path network. This would have paid staff and not just rely on the excellent Sustrans Volunteer Rangers!

To add weight to their bids councils are expected to find partners and supporters. Greener Leith, (which has campaigned for improvements to the off-road path links in Leith), is one organisation that is supportive – and has even offered to help finding “matching money”. Alastair Tibbitt, Chair of Greener Leith, has told the Council that it “wholeheartedly supports the City of Edinburgh Council’s bid to the ‘Smarter Choices, Smarter Places’ project. There is no doubt that Leith needs investment in the local transport infrastructure if it is become more sustainable. As the regeneration of the docks proceeds, together with a number of other key sites, such as Shrubhill, the existing transport network is being placed under increasing stress. We hope that the Scottish Government will shortlist this project and we wish CEC every success in its bid. We would hope to be able to work with the council to seek further match funding for some capital improvements, should you be successful.”

Other partners include Spokes, Transport Edinburgh Limited/Lothian Buses, NHS Lothian, the Police and Sustrans. A decision is expected shortly.

Leith through to stage 2

Posted in Art, bike security theft, bike shops, City of Edinburgh Council, citycycling, Climate Change, commuting, Core Path Network, cycle parking, cycle training, Cycling News, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Demonstration Towns, Edinburgh, EducatedTravel, European Moblity Week, Exhibition, HEALTH, Lothian Buses, Maps, paths, Peak Oil, ride, Safe Routes to School, Safety, Spokes, Sustrans, technology, Trams, TryCycling, walking | Leave a Comment »

What Will the Planners Say?

Posted by chdot on July 19, 2007

Shackup shed
There are many reasons given for not cycling – traffic, safety, weather, hills. Two others that affect many people are theft and storage.

Sadly bikes get stolen, even ones locked securely to city centre railings. Thieves also target ‘student areas’. Some people who have bikes stolen, give up cycling.

Safe, secure storage is especially a problem in tenement areas. Ten years ago the Council won £15,000 in the Scottish Office Cycle Challenge to investigate the “design and installation of cycle storage systems for flatted developments”. This particular project didn’t actually happen.

Since then various possibilities have been looked at in tenement stairwells and back greens. Getting owners’ agreement is one stumbling block. Proposals for lockers in the street aren’t looked on favourably. Obviously streets are for parking cars and wheelie bins

Even plans for garden sheds in front gardens owned by ground floor flats have fallen foul of the City’s planners. Will the Shackup (pictured) fare any better? The key difference is that it is about half the height of a ‘proper’ shed. The main compartment is designed to hold four bikes and an end compartment has room for cycling or gardening items. A prototype was shown last year at the Reinventing the Bike Shed exhibition last year.

The idea comes from designer Wayne Hemingway’s company. Hemingway cycles and has also been involved in Urban Design in recent years, taking an interest in Home Zones. One current project is working with major house builder Wimpey on the Staiths South Bank development in Gateshead. Shackups will appear en masse in the back gardens there. Expect to see them flatpacked in B&Q later in the year – and then perhaps in Edinburgh’s front and back greens and gardens.

Posted in bike security theft, City of Edinburgh Council, citycycling, commuting, critical mass, cycle parking, Cycling News, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Edinburgh, Exhibition, Safe Routes to School, Safety, What the papers say | 2 Comments »

Conference Outline Announced

Posted by chdot on July 18, 2007

CS conference
Provisional details of the Cycling Scotland Annual Conference have been released.

“CYCLING A simple solution to complex problems” is the straightforward tag. Familiar topics of integrated transport, climate change and health will be covered. In addition two sessions relating to tourism are planned. Both ‘traditional’ cycle touring and Scotland’s new place as a World class MTB trails ‘destination’ will be covered.

The only confirmed speakers are Scotland’s Transport Minister (Stewart Stevenson) and Cycling Scotland’s Chief Executive (Erl Wilkie).

The event is on Tuesday the 13th of November in Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall. Full fee is £140 with 50 places at £80 for “cycle campaign groups, voluntary organisations and academics”.

(More info – PDF)

Posted in Bikes on trains, citycycling, commuting, cycle parking, cycle training, Cycling News, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Exhibition, Glasgow, HEALTH, holidays, ride, Safe Routes to School, Sustrans, TryCycling, walking | 1 Comment »

Festival Finished, Exhibition Extended

Posted by chdot on June 25, 2007

EBWFF Exhibition
Edinburgh’s Bike Week Film Festival finished last night.

The photo exhibition in the bar will be on show until the 8th of July.

Most of the pictures can be seen here – but they are much better seen large and framed…

Posted in Bicycle Film Festival, Bike Week, bikeweek, citycycling, commuting, Craigmillar Cycles, critical mass, cycle racing, Cycling News, cycling world, cyclingedinburgh, Edinburgh, Exhibition, ride, TryCycling | Leave a Comment »