Research suggests cycle-lanes increase congestion and pollution

A study has found that only 1 in 400 vehicles is a bicycle and that they could actually be increasing congestion and pollution

cycle lane

AFTER ploughing £250m into cycle lanes across the country, a study has found that many are going un-used and that they could actually be making the roads worse.

The study, conducted by The -lanes Telegraph, has found that the number of bicycles actually using the cycle routes could be a low as one out of 400 vehicles.

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The study was conducted during the morning and evening rush hours, and at a time when there was no adverse weather reported – something that could be off-putting to pedal-powered commuters. The survey counted more than 34,000 vehicles, on eight routes that had been adapted in this manner. Of all the vehicles encountered, only 608 bicycles were counted.

The results paint an embarrassing picture and one that could be doing more harm than good. With the extra width inhabited by the cycle-lanes comes a narrower and more congested road for other motor vehicles. The slower-moving, and quite often stationary, traffic is being blamed for an increase in local pollution levels, as vehicles sit idling instead of driving onwards.

It’s not just pollution that’s the problem, the more congested roads make it more difficult for vehicles to clear the way, inhibiting emergency services and extending waiting times for things like ambulances.

Another eye-opening stat un-earthed by the study, is that for every £6,153 spent on the cycle-lane scheme, just one extra bicycle rider would have been attracted to commuting on two-wheels. It also found that if this scheme continued at this pace until 2030, at a cost to the taxpayer of £400m a year, the increase in the uptake of bicycle commuting would be between half and one percent!