Updated: 13 June 2000

Edinburgh cyclist Andrew Battye <andrewbattye@netscape.net> saw my web page, and wanted to do the same for Edinburgh. I'm very pleased to publish this for him.

All comments about content should be directed to Andrew; I'm just publishing this on his behalf. The pictures were taken in mid-March 2000; please let him know if anything has been changed since then.

--- Stewart C. Russell

Edinburgh's Cycle Facilities

Kings Stables Road - Contra-flow Pavement Path:

Pass the ped...

The deficiencies are obvious: poor pedestrian compliance (this is not a staged photo) and poor visibility lead to a dangerous situation, a high wall and a fence ensure there's no escape route.

up the hill...

What is the point of this path? You get round the corner, then

and stuck on the pavement

Are dumped onto the pavement (behind the phone box) with no legal way of getting back onto the road.

Another pavement path

left turn #1

Coming from the left-hand side of the picture, you can dive onto this pavement lane...

left turn #2

Go round the corner...

along the lane

Down the street

and turn again

And back onto the road... you've saved yourself the trouble of making a left-turn, and replaced it with making two left turns (one to get onto the path, one to get off). In the other direction, you can replace a right turn with two right turns by using this path. Great!

Roundabout Lanes

This lane puts the cyclist in the wrong place

At a roundabout, one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a cyclist is to position yourself where drivers are not looking, for example at the edge of the circulating carriageway when a driver's attention is directed more towards the centre of the carriageway. This lane encourages cyclists to put themselves in the prime position not to be seen.

Yielding to traffic you cannot see is not good

Same location, here it appears that the cycle lane joining the roundabout has priority over the lane on the roundabout, contradicting the normal rule of the road. Additionally, if you were in the lane but did not want to leave the roundabout at the exit shown, you would have to yield to vehicles from behind.

Debris-strewn lane

At least the surface of the lane is free of debris. Not!

Broughton St roundabout lane

Another roundabout lane, this time at Broughton Street.

Bike lanes are not for trucks

Broughton St again. Notice how the Edinburgh council lorry is waiting in the cycle lane.

Another right-of-way wrong

Another roundabout lane - according to the road markings, cyclists in the lane have to yield, once more, to vehicles from behind if they are not leaving at this road.

Lane blocked by car and cone

A car waiting to join the roundabout highlights the dangers - and a strategically placed cone adds to the perils of using this lane.

Road Closure with Cycle-Bypass

Can you get by these parked cars?

This potentially useful by-pass has been negated by legal (silver Passat) and illegal (blue Civic) parking.

No chance!

Fancy your chances of getting through?

The truth is out!

Sign to the West Approach Road

Around Edinburgh you'll see signs like this, directing light vehicles to the West Approach Road, a route to the city centre built on an old railway alignment.

Bikes can't go on the West Approach Road

But when you reach the road, you'll find cycles are not allowed. So, the council either thinks that cycles are not "light" or that they are not "vehicles". Which is it?

National Cycle Network - Edinburgh to Queensferry section

This path has recently been improved and new pictures may be published here soon.

On-road Lanes

A lane in a road too narrow

An advanced stop-line is not much use if you can not reach it. This bus has its right-hand side up against the centre line of the road, but still manages to encroach into the bike lane.

A lane at a pinch-point

This lane conveniently gets narrower just when you would want motor vehicles not to overtake you, due to the pedestrian refuge in the centre of the street.

Don't get crushed by a bus

Same place, only the risk is greater.

This is more like it

This is more like it, a lane wide enough to stay away from the dangers of car doors being flung open in front of you.

Mind the doors, please!

Not like here!

Dodge those doors

Or here!

Let's have parking bays in this lane

Does anyone think that cycle-lanes with parking bays on top are a good idea?

And Finally.

Trapped in this lane for eternity

The Kafka-esque cycle lane on Eyre Place. You can cycle up this contra-flow cycle-lane, but on reaching the junction, you'll find that there is no way out. It's illegal to ride on the pavement, and it is illegal to divert onto the road, as you'll be riding the wrong way up a one-way street. The traffic lights at this junction do not include a phase to allow you to exit from the lane. You're stuck! You have been warned.

Text and pictures by Andrew Battye.
Markup (and ALT tags) by Stewart C. Russell.