Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Adaptive reuse for bicycles

Adaptive reuse is the design principle by which old structures take on new purposes.

What does this mean for bicycles? Well, the majority of urban spaces since the 1950s have been built around the idea that all forms of transportation would be undertaken by cars. Getting rid of this dogma allows one to see that old spaces can be recreated in new ways that suport cycling as an everyday form of transportation.

Consider the following picture of the "Cycle Central" facility at Manly Council. By taking 5 carparking spaces away from cars, the council was able to provide secure bike parking facilities for 72 cyclists. This ratio works at roughly 1 carparking space to every 14 bicycles meaning that the problem of traffic congestion may require less carparking rather than more.

Building cycleways can also be seen as a complex and expensive process. However, here at Hallstrome Reserve Willoughby, the council has simply moved the carparking spaces 1.5 metres across to facilitate a more direct cycleway access through the area.

Sometimes all you need is a bit of brain power and a can of paint.