A cyclist from Malta’s cycling community went down to the Mgarr bypass with a measuring tape to personally measure the new bike lanes himself.
This comes after members of the community reacted negatively to the newly unveiled bike lanes, with lane segregation once again not being included as part of the plans.
“Challenge accepted,” one cyclist said in the local biking community group ‘Kommunita Rota’ as he measured the lanes.
“The usable part of the Mosta bound side of Mġarr cycle lane is 1.2 metres to 1.1 metres wide,” he said.
“Sadly if they hadn’t put the rumble strip in it would have stayed on the good side of minimum even if it didn’t reach 1.5m.”
Many other cyclists had also criticised the placement of the rumble strips, arguing that it defeats the purpose if they are placed within the lane, as opposed to outside of the lane.
“Rumble strips are used to alert drivers when intruding into the cycle lane, and in any case should have been placed outside the cycle lane. If the car is within the rumble-strip zone, it is already too late for the cyclist,” the eNGO rota explained.
The cyclist also took it upon himself to measure the Mġarr bound side of the bypass, finding that it is much more varied in width compared to the Mosta bound side.
“One bit was a nice 1.5 metres, but very short and it quickly snuck down to a metre. The choke point next to the wall is barely 0.9 metres without any (0.5 metre) buffer zone or 0.2-metre vertical obstacle clearance,” he said.
“Where it does widen it reaches 1.1 metres at best so it’s way below the minimum,” he said.
These measurements are a clear cut indication that the lanes were not done appropriately, and not enough space from the new road was actually dedicated for the lanes, and by extension, Malta’s cyclists.
If we would really like to start achieving more usage of alternative transportation in the country, then these mistakes shouldn’t be continuously repeated.
What do you make of this?