The Effect of Road Narrowings on Cyclists

Transport Research Laboratory
Publication date: 
December 2004

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The objectives of this study were to examine the issues regarding road narrowings and to monitor the benefits of measures designed to assist cyclists. The general approach to the study programme was to divide the research into four main elements: 

  • To undertake a review of existing published material on road narrowings and identify relevant guidance and reserach methods.
  • To undertake a consultation exercise with organisations representing cyclists, pedestrians and drivers to establish their views.
  • To evaluate the impact of measures that local authorities are currently adopting to assist cyclists at road narrowings and provide quantitative results on the behavioural interaction between cyclists and motorists.
  • To build a virtual reality (VR) driving simulator to test the effects of various schemes on driver behaviour.

This report provides a background summary of current guidance on providing road narrowings. It summarises the responses from the consultation exercise, highlighting the main themes and examples of good and bad practice. It details the methodology and results from the local authority monitoring schemes and the virtual reality pilot tests. Finally, the report discuess the results from the research and outlines recommendations for providing design advice.