Thursday, 31 March 2011

What is a 'bike hub'?

Many progressive local authorities in Britain aspire to create ‘bike hubs’ or have actually created them. But many people remain confused and some have contacted the Krapp Institute for advice as to what exactly a ‘bike hub’ is and where they can find one in their area.

The answer is simple. A ‘bike hub’ is usually a shopping centre full of cars which contains no cycle parking. To access the ‘bike hub’ simply get on your bicycle and follow the signs that read ‘CAR PARK THIS WAY – PARKING FOR 600 CARS’. Remember to watch out for drivers of lorries, vans, 4X4s, Audis and BMWs, as these drivers find it particularly difficult to see cyclists.

If your local council is ‘Green’ you might find some cycle stands tucked away around the back of the car park block. These are rarely signed but it is always well worth looking for the waste containers. Remember that most bike stands are traditionally located in close proximity to rubbish.

A few exceptional local authorities such as the London Borough of Newham helpfully sign the existence of ‘bike hub’ routes, as shown above on the legendary Newham ‘Greenway’ (middle section closed until late 2014 – please obey the CYCLISTS DISMOUNT signs before following the diversion onto the six-lane Formula One racing circuit).

The Newham Greenway connects the cycling-friendly Stratford urban motorway gyratory with the cycling-friendly Becton urban speedway network. On this lonely, windswept route cyclists have an exciting opportunity to experience life in the East End.

On the Greenway cyclists can also enjoy traditional cycling infrastructure, which is ‘dual use’ and may also be used for sheep-shearing and to halt stampeding herds of buffalo.

Please note that the Greenway gates make this route unsuitable for those riding cargo bikes, trikes, bikes with panniers, or towing trailers.