Helsingin kaupunki, kaupunkiympäristön toimiala

Closer monitoring of parking on segregated cycle paths

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This week, the City of Helsinki is stepping up its parking control on cycle paths and lanes. The efficiency campaign will place particular emphasis on new types of segregated cycle path and lanes. At the same time, the city will begin to monitor the long-term effects of systematic intervention.

Photo: Roni Rekomaa.
Photo: Roni Rekomaa.

Getting used to new transport solutions takes time

The city aims to create a traffic system that serves all traffic users equally. The construction of structurally segregated cycle paths and lanes in recent years is improving conditions and road safety for both cyclists and pedestrians, with each mode of transport clearly allocated its own space.

However, not everyone may yet be familiar with the new traffic solutions and their rules.

"According to the Road Traffic Act, a motor vehicle may temporarily stop on a segregated cycle path if there are no other suitable places, there are compelling reasons for the stop and the stop does not cause unreasonable inconvenience to cyclists. On the new types of segregated cycle path such as Hämeentie, these conditions are not being met; that is to say, parking on the cycle paths is not being dictated by necessity and is causing undue inconvenience. On Hämeentie, for example, service parking pockets have been placed at the edge of the pavement and the pavement is in any case wide enough to allow for momentary stopping. This is also the aim on other streets where similar traffic solutions are being implemented," says Oskari Kaupinmäki, Cycling Coordinator.

The campaign will also tackle the problem of incorrect stopping on the pavement. When stopping on the pavement, sufficient space must be left during loading and unloading to allow pushchairs and wheelchairs to manoeuvre around the vehicle on the pavement side. It is only permitted to stop on the pavement when there is no free parking or loading space nearby, and stopping in the driving lane is forbidden. When stopping on both the pavement and the cycle path, the driver must remain close to the vehicle.

The effectiveness of control for closer monitoring

The efficiency campaign is the starting point for closer monitoring of the effectiveness of control. Parking control also tackles incorrect parking on cycle paths within the framework of basic enforcement. For example, in 2020, 22,600 parking fines were issued for parking on cycle paths. The city intends to monitor more closely how control moves traffic culture in the desired direction in the long term.

"It's worth noting that the traffic culture of well-known cycling cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam didn't come out of nowhere. These cities also experienced the same problems when segregated cycle paths entered the urban landscape. The traffic rules started to take root as a result of control and communication of the change," Kaupinmäki continues.

Copenhagen has been acting as a mentor for Helsinki in an EU project to develop cycling in ten European cities, following the example of Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Munich. The Handshake project was launched in autumn 2018 and will run until spring this year.

Edited 14.6.2022 11.59: Edited momentary parking to momentary stopping (Kaupinmäki's quote).

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Contacts

Oskari Kaupinmäki
Cycling coordinator
Urban Environment Division
09 310 22589, oskari.kaupinmaki@hel.fi

Images

Photo: Roni Rekomaa.
Photo: Roni Rekomaa.
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Helsingin kaupunki, kaupunkiympäristön toimiala
Helsingin kaupunki, kaupunkiympäristön toimiala

PL 58200, 00099 Helsingin kaupunki

09 310 2611http://www.hel.fi/kaupunkiymparisto

Kaupunkiympäristön toimiala huolehtii Helsingin kaupunkiympäristön suunnittelusta, rakentamisesta ja ylläpidosta, rakennusvalvonnasta sekä ympäristöön liittyvistä palveluista.

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