Sunday, 31 August 2003

Stuart Filed writes:

The 'cycling horrors of Brussels' can be seen (in
French) at this website.

One is outside the British Embassy, where they've
widened the pavement and added bollards to stop people
parking directly outside.

Other examples include things you will be familiar
with such as impossible contraflow bike paths, signs
in the middle of the path, sharp zigzags etc. However
Brussels has a particular problem: granite setts.

On the Brussels website, they claim that it is
impossible to cycle in Bruges because of the granite
setts on the old streets. However, lost of people do
-it's hard but possible. The small square ones are no
problem - it's the bigger oblong ones that are the
potential killers, especially when wet.

(See the picture underneaththe text "Rue Borgval ?
place St Gery": the top half shows the
"cyclist-friendly" small square ones, and the bottom
half the killer oblong ones.)

I seem to remember seeing similar granite setts in
Brighton but can't remember where.

In one street in Bruges they've put a strip of red
asphalt on top of the granite setts to help cyclists
-I've never seen this anywhere else.

But, it seems things may be improving a little in
Brussels. In the "Rue de la Loi" (also called
"Wetstraat"), a nightmarishly busy one-way street near
the European Commission in Brussels, is being reduced
from 5 lanes to 4 lanes and cycle paths are being
added on both sides. They will be built into the
pavement, but using different colour bricks so that
it's clear that they are cycle paths.

Thursday, 28 August 2003

Added more guest photos � pictures of Belgium from Stuart Field (of Utrecht, Netherlands) � and from an anonymous correspondent of the A6036 between Bradford and Halifax.

Roddy Redrock writes: we have a cycle lane in the wilds of Talgarth in Wales, over all it is about a mile long. Transfers you off one often busy B road, you have to cross a main trunk road then travel alongside another busy B road to nowhere in particular. All part of this so called Sustrans network. It is a hazard to ride on as it is covered in part by sticky red mud in the wet winter weather as the mud washes onto it out of the fields and often covered with hedge trimmings and thorns around late summer. Safer to cycle the road.