[Tagging] Cycle lanes & cycle tracks - my findings and a proposal

Richard Mann richard.mann.westoxford at gmail.com
Sat May 26 16:34:04 BST 2012


In Denmark, they use lanes/tracks that are immediately alongside the road
and separated by a shallow kerb, and turn into lanes on the approach to
junctions. You can certainly move on and off them very easily.

On Sat, May 26, 2012 at 3:03 PM, Rob Nickerson <rob.j.nickerson at gmail.com>wrote:

>
> Hi All,
>
> Sorry for the late reply after starting this thread a few days ago.
>
> I was surprised to see how far this topic has expanded (even into OSM
> should have fault lines so we can re-align after earthquakes!), so I just
> want to refocus on cycling.
>
>
> 1. A Quick Recap
> From the countries that I have researched so far (UK, Netherlands,
> Germany) there is a consistent difference between a cycle LANE
> (Fietsstrook, Radfahrstreifen), and a cycle TRACK (Fietspad, Radwegen).
>
> In all countries a cycle LANE is a area within the main roadway
> (carriageway) that is allocated for cycle use. It is indicated by a painted
> line on the road surface. For all purposes in OSM it can be considered as a
> 'lane' as there is no separation from the other lanes that form the road
> and therefore nothing physically stopping a cyclist from changing to a
> different lane at any point along the road. Motor vehicles may be
> prohibited from using this lane (UK: "Mandatory cycle lane") or not (UK:
> "Advisory", Netherlands "Fietssuggestiestrook").
>
> Contrast this to a cycle TRACK, which is physically separate from the main
> roadway. The separation may be a kerb, barrier/wall, strip of grass or just
> a row of parked cars. In different countries the TRACK may be one-way or
> two-way, shared with pedestrians, mandatory for cyclists, and so on.
> Irrespective of all of these things is the key fact that the cycle TRACK is
> physically separated and therefore the cyclist cannot simply move from the
> track to the main roadway at any point / at will.
>
>
> 2. The cycleway=* tag
> The current cycleway tag attempts to cater for both of these and as a
> result it is not particularly clear for new users. I believe the fact that
> renderers and routing software haven't picked up the cycleway tag with any
> widespread enthusiasm is evidence that improvements can be made.
>
>
> 3. So what is important
> For a cyclist I feel that the most important thing is "I am travelling
> from A to B with my child. How _safe_ is it for cyclists? Will there be
> cycle lanes and/or cycle tracks to use in the _direction_ of my travel?"
>
> Based on this question the useful things to know are:
>
> * Direction
> * Safety
>
> 3a. Cycle LANES
>
> By having a tag specifically for cyclelanes we can indicate both direction
> and type of lane (an partial indication of safety). For example:
>
> highway=secondary
> cyclelane:forward=share_busway
> cyclelane:backward=advisory
>
> Exact lane positioning can then be picked up by the lanes fans (
> http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Lanes)
>
>
> 3b. Cycle TRACKS
>
> As these are physically separate from the other lanes of the main roadway
> (and therefore a cyclist is not free to switch back and forth between cycle
> track and roadway), my personal preference is to map them as a separate
> way.
>
> Our German mappers raised the concern that cyclists must use the
> cycletrack and are not allowed to use the roadway unless the cycletrack is
> obstructed, for example. They have pointed out that they do not like the
> use of bicycle=no on the main highway as cyclists are not legally banned
> from using the road in all circumstances. Although I think they are being
> hopeful that bicycle=no is only being used when it is illegal, can I
> suggest bicycle=secondary, bicycle=non-primary, or bicycle=alternative for
> this case (another suggestion already made is bicycle=destination)?
>
> For cases where it is difficult to draw a separate way then consider:
>
> highway=secondary
> cycletrack:left=two-way
>
>
> Any feedback will be much appreciated, but please keep in mind the ease of
> the system for new users and long-term maintainability.
>
> Cheers,
> Rob
>
>
> p.s. In my opinion "no" is not a strong enough word to ensure that it is
> only used when access is illegal/prohibited, especially when shown in
> Potlatch2's drop down menu with no explanation. Much better would be
> access=illegal -> please start a new thread if you would like to discuss
> this :-)
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
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