Knowledge CentreTechnical Resources SearchConference PapersDeveloping a cycling facility selection tool: Some observations

Developing a cycling facility selection tool: Some observations


While it is necessary to ensure that existing cycling facilities perform appropriately from a safety standpoint, cycling facility planners and designers also need to provide additional routes and facilities that encourage new or less experienced cyclists. This can only be accomplished if new cyclists feel comfortable and “safe” using these facilities. An emerging option that is becoming increasingly important in this respect is the appropriate deployment of segregated cycle facilities. One of the significant challenges designers and road safety evaluators face when dealing with cycling safety issues is the sparseness of collision data. This leads to an inability to develop statistically reliable tools that quantify the specific safety benefits for one facility type relative to another (i.e. comparing a segregated facility to a non-segregated facility). In the absence of these tools, practitioners are faced with using other safety-related proxy measures to determine the most appropriate facility type for the cycle route under review. This paper examines recent research findings in this area, methods currently being used to select facility types elsewhere in the world, and the development of a preferred technique for the City of Ottawa, in the Province of Ontario. The facility selection tool represents a significant departure from the practical experimentation that has taken place across North America with respect to the issue of segregated cycling facilities and changes how we look at facility selection and the principles behind our decisions. It provides guidance on the use of a mixture of cycling facility types. Having a mixture of facility types that can be deployed using a consistent methodology is necessary to improving the safety and comfort of our cycling routes. 

Conference Paper Details

Session title:
James J. Copeland
Greg L. Chisholm
John B. L. Robinson