A new cycle map inspired by conversations with school children and older cyclists aims to connect up Oxford and enable rides on quieter and safer routes throughout the city.
Crowdsourced by users, the Oxford Online Cycling Map shows routes with low or no car traffic to help less experienced cyclists to gain confidence on two wheels.
Developed by Cyclox and the Coalition for Healthy Streets and Active Travel (CoHSAT), it aims to connect up schools and other key destinations where possible in a low-traffic way.
The map is being released to mark the 100th anniversary of Bike Week which is being held between 5 and 11 June.
Cllr Emily Kerr, who helped design the map, said: “The cycle routes won’t always be the most direct, but they should be the quietest. We’ve split routes into car-free, low-car and walking-only; and you can tick a box in the map to see crossings. We’ve aimed to make sure schools and other destinations are connected up, and where there are a number of options, we’ve just chosen the best one so the map doesn’t get too crowded. The map is on Google Maps so it’s possible to download to your phone - and you can even make a copy and edit yourself if you want to.”
Campaigners are also calling for better road safety measures including more school streets and the introduction of traffic filters.
There are few places better to cycle than Oxfordshire, and cycling groups will be putting on special rides and events across the county to mark Bike Week. Cyclox are running two stalls on the weekend of the 3 and 4 June at Oxford Pride and Headington Festival, both with cycle repair services.
Dr Alison Hill, Chair of Cyclox, said: “It’s a great tool for planning a commute, a journey to the shops, or visiting a friend. We’ve aimed to make sure schools and other destinations are connected up, and where there are a number of options, we’ve just chosen the best one, so the map doesn’t get too crowded.”
Oxfordshire is a great place to be cycling. Oxford is the second highest area for cycling in the country, after Cambridge, and 59% of adults cycle. According to data published by Oxfordshire County Council, the six traffic filters would reduce road casualties by 9% and cycling casualties by 13%.
To find other rides and events check out the Cycling UK Oxfordshire website.