|Typical road in Barcelona's old centre.|
Barcelona began creating cycling facilities circa 1992 in preparation for the '92 Olympic Games. These were a series of bike lanes created on wide sidewalks in the modern extensions of Barcelona. These bike lanes built on pedestrian walkways caused a lot of problems and their legacy is still being felt today.
|On sidewalk cycling lane created circa 1992.|
Since 1992 Barcelona has sought to move forward with better cycling facilities. Improvements and new facilities have been designed and constructed. The city appears to have put effort into improving connections to old facilities. New innovative, safer and more friendly facilities have been created. One of the most next and most important steps moving forward will be providing more secure lock-up facilities for cyclists.
Four years ago Barcelona saw a dramatic increase in cycling as cyclists mode share double with the introduction of the Bicing, Barcelona's bike share program. However, this success has also come at a cost as complaints about cyclists to the City's Ombudsperson outnumber all others. Often those who use the Bicing bikes are relatively inexperienced cyclists and it is these inexperienced cyclists that make up nearly half of all cyclists in the city.
|Bicing station- Part of Barcelona's bike share program|
It does not take much investigation to see that cycling culture in Barcelona is building. The city is motivated and businesses seem willing to support this movement. A city that is mostly flat with pleasant weather nearly all year-round, cycling should be easily integrated into the walking and transit culture.