Cycling infrastructure in Aberdeen

We went for quite a stressful bike ride today. It was supposed to be a pleasant afternoon cycling along a newly discovered bike path but traffic and a lack of suitable crossings for bicycles made it stressful.

I took a photo of one of the crossings we made to point out how inadequate it is for bicycles. This is on the Duthie Park side of the river next to where the council has finished a new bike path. On one side of this four-lane bridge is a bike path and on the other side is also a bike path but how cyclists are supposed to get from one bike path to the other is a mystery to me. It’s not just a matter of dashing out in front of traffic but also somehow getting up and down the kerb.

My bike weighs about 40kg sans kids. With kids on-board it’s about 90kg. There is no way I’m capable of lifting it up a high kerb. This means I need to find a kerb that will let me push my bike up onto it and that was across the King George VI bridge and four lanes of traffic. The traffic island in the middle is too narrow for me to stop since my bike is longer than most and so I have to dash all the way from one side to the other in one go. It’s like playing a game of red rover only not very much fun and also quite dangerous. In my mad dash I even lost a shoe which Ben is holding in the photo.

road

At the other end of the bike path is the Bridge of Dee which has a path down each side for pedestrians but it’s so extremely narrow that it’s almost impossible to cross and not at all pleasant given the amount of traffic on the bridge.

The newly discovered bike path is on the other side of the river across from Duthie Park. It was very nice and had lovely views of the city, the river, and some nice landscaping. But we won’t be going back in a hurry given how stressful it is to get to. Here are some pics of it:

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I think I must be about to break into song here:

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10 thoughts on “Cycling infrastructure in Aberdeen

  1. So bad is British cycling infrastructure that there are entire websites dedicated to crap cycle facilities.   Indeed, you can even buy the book…

    http://homepage.ntlworld.com/pete.meg/wcc/facility-of-the-month/book.htm

    Here’s a favourite near me to “help” cyclists avoid a dangerous road. I’m sure you’d be delighted to get your cargo bike up that.

    http://www.cyclestreets.net/location/19045/

    Have you joined the excellent CTC?

    http://www.ctc.org.uk/

    1. That book looks quite funny but also a bit sad. I would not be able to get up those steps on my bike. It just wouldn’t be possible at all. Yes, were members of the CTC.

  2. We are looking to buy bicycles and find out about bicycle lanes on which to ride them but where there is no traffic, I’m not brave like you Rachel! Too bad we don’t do better in this regard here in the UK. Lovely photo of you…hope your day got less stressful and thanks again so much for all your help, it seems as if my non-commenting problem is sorted 🙂

    1. I’m very glad to see your comments are going through now 🙂

      And I’m pleased to hear you’re going to take up cycling. It’s lots of fun and good exercise too. You’ll have to post pics of your bike when you get one.

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