Working to make cycling an everyday experience in Dundee
Hello! We are a new group, formed in October 2016 to promote cycling as an everyday activity in Dundee. We are open to anyone who cycles regularly, cycles occasionally or would like to start cycling. The aim is to help us all by making cycling a normal, everyday activity in Dundee. Watch the "News" panel and page for events and issues. Also, follow our Facebook and Twitter for the very latest information and cycling-related posts from further afield that have caught our attention.
We are mainly thinking about cycling as transport for work and leisure. Anyone who has been to the Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, or even some cities in the UK will know that cycling works great as basic transport - it is quick, cheap and good for you. Dundee is a compact city and reasonably dry and sunny (for Scotland!) so it is an ideal place to join this 21st century revolution. There is a lot of work to do to catch up with the best cycling cities. The Netherlands started in the 1970s and Copenhagen in the 1990s. If we learn from their experiences we can catch up. It means changing the roads and changing minds.
So that is why we are here - to help Dundee join this healthy, practical, enjoyable trend. Which is not to say we will ignore our more-sporty friends - we are all part of the big cycling picture that is the future for communities throughout the world.
A few weeks ago, several of us spent our Sunday morning surveying the city centre with a cyclist's eye, looking for simple improvements that would make life better for cyclists and would-be cyclists. What we expected would take a couple of hours turned into more than double that. Thank you to Henry's Coffee Shop in City Square who put up with us spreading our map across several tables while we collated our findings. We came up with a long list!
You can see our initial report here. The things we found fell mainly into two categories. There are several simple fixes that would make cycling easier, such as connecting up routes that are currently blocked by No Entry signs or unsuitable junctions. Also, the city centre is full of signs saying "Pedestrian Zone" when actually it is only motor vehicles that are prohibited; these not only confuse cyclists but also annoy pedestrians unnecessarily because they think cyclists are riding where they shouldn't.
The next steps include making sure the Council act on our findings. So far, things have gone backwards - the tarmac ramp that connected Nethergate to High Street has gone and been replaced not by dropped kerbs but by normal kerbs. This is both inconvenient for cyclists and gives the wrong impression to pedestrians and motorists that the junction is closed at that point. Your thoughts are very welcome - see the contact links at the top of this page!
Our next meeting will be 21st August, probably in the usual place at the usual time, but watch here and Facebook for details nearer the time.
We have another members' meeting on Monday 12th June. It starts at 6.30pm in room 2G12 of the Dalhousise Building on Hawkhill. Notice that this is a bit earlier than normal - which will hopefully make it easier for people to attend straight after work rather than hanging around town waiting. See you there!
Join us on a short ride across the Tay Road Bridge to this year's Cyclofun event in Tayport. Meet at 10am on Sunday 28th May at the Frigate Unicorn. Under-18s to be accompanied by an adult, please. Free entry to the event when we get there! That's got to be worth it!
You will have noticed that the Riverside cyclepath (aka part of National Cycle Route 77) is undergoing serious disruption. You may not realise that it will continue for most of the rest of the year. Help us persuade the council to improve things.
We are supporting Cyclofun 2017, which is an event organised by four Fife Rotary Clubs. You can get all the details at http://www.cyclofun.co.uk
We had a great turn out for the city centre cycle audit last Sunday. There'll be a full report once we have got it all written up properly. Thanks to all who came and thanks to Henry's Coffee House for not minding that we covered four of their tables with our map for two hours as we annotated it with our findings.
Small changes for big differences. We have the opportunity to advise the council on how best to spend a relatively small amount of money to make small changes within the city centre that will make a big difference to cyclists. They mean things like dropping kerbs, painting lines, unsuitable oneways etc. So we are going to do an audit of cycling provision in Dundee city centre. Please come along! Or if you can't make it in person, post your suggestions to the Event page on Facebook or send us a Tweet.
The PROVISIONAL details for the next meeting are 7.30pm on 20th March, in the Dalhousie Building on Hawkhill.