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					Joint Committee on Mobility of Blind and Partially Sighted People

                 Chairman: Peter Barker OBE




         Adjacent Facilities for
     Pedestrians and Cyclists


                Policy Statement
                      June 2004


  Joint Committee on Mobility of
 Blind and Partially Sighted People


         Chairman: Peter Barker OBE



              Secretariat: Guide Dogs
           Hillfields, Burghfield Common,
           Reading, Berkshire. RG7 3YG

     Tel: 01189 838359 Fax: 01189 835477
       Email jcmbps@guidedogs.org.uk
                     Guide Dog Chairman: Peter Barker OBE



Joint Committee on Mobility of Blind and Partially Sighted
People Policy Statement:
Adjacent Facilities for Pedestrians and Cyclists


1     Introduction
1.1   The Joint Committee on Mobility of Blind and Partially Sighted People is an
      independent body consisting of representatives of the principle organisations
      of and for blind, deafblind and partially sighted people with a specific interest
      in mobility. The Joint Committee on Mobility of Blind and Partially Sighted
      People believes that blind, deafblind and partially sighted people should be
      able to move around safely and independently.

1.2   The Joint Committee believes that currently this is not the position and that
      blind, deafblind and partially sighted people experience enormous barriers to
      freedom of movement, seriously limiting their opportunities and choices. The
      Joint Committee believes that all blind, deafblind and partially sighted people
      should receive the support and skills they need to enable them to meet the
      challenges of the external environment.

1.3   There are around 10.6 million disabled people in the UK, including over a
      million blind and partially sighted people. Almost 2 million people with
      significant sight lossi would have difficulty, even with the aid of glasses, in
      recognising a friend across the street. Many also have additional disabilities,
      particularly hearing loss, and experience serious problems moving around
      the built environment. Those engaged in providing services and facilities in
      the built environment should always take their needs into account.

1.4   It is predicted that over the next 30 years
       The proportion of the population over 65 will increase by 40%
       The number of people aged over 65 will double;
       The proportion over 80 will increase by 100% and the number will treble
       Over the same period the overall population will increase by less than 7%.

1.5   The growing disabled and older population will have social as well as
      economic implications if those responsible for the provision of transport
      systems and built environments do not recognise and address the need for
      more inclusive environments.

1.6   The Government is committed to social inclusion, and access to goods,
      facilities and services through the Disability Discrimination Act. The
      Government is proposing to make it unlawful for a public authority to


JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
                    Tel: 01189 838359 Fax: 01189 835477

                                    Page 2 of 10
                      Guide Dog Chairman: Peter Barker OBE


       discriminate against a disabled person in carrying out its functions, and to
       impose a public sector duty to promote disability equality in such areas as
       pedestrian environments.
1.7    The Joint Committee on Mobility of Blind and Partially Sighted People, which
       comprises representatives of the principal organisations of and for visually
       impaired people with a specific interest in mobility, seeks to create an
       environment that enables blind, deafblind and partially sighted people to
       move around the built environment safely, independently and without
       restriction.
1.8    In recent years there has been a dramatic increase in the number of places
       where pedestrians and cyclists must share facilities. This is linked to the
       encouragement of walking and cycling as transport modes for environmental,
       health and economic reasons. The National Cycling Strategy is committed to
       the increase of cycling and provision of cycle routes. At the same time the
       Government is encouraging walking and pedestrian routes which are
       „pleasant, safe and convenient to walk‟.ii
1.9    The increase in footways and footpaths shared by cyclists and pedestrians is
       causing widespread concern not only to people with a sensory impairment
       but also to other pedestrians and facility planners. These concerns and
       needs should be taken into account as part of the national cycling and
       pedestrian policies.
1.10   There is also concern about the increase in illegal cycling on pavements
       which may be partly due to the increase in shared facilities, giving cyclists the
       message that it is acceptable to cycle on pedestrian paths. The use of
       scooters and skateboards on pavements is of great concern, dangerous and
       frightening for pedestrians particularly visually impaired and other disabled
       people. This must be strictly controlled and enforced and alternative safe
       areas found where children can use these.

2      General principles
2.1    The right of all pedestrians to unrestricted and safe passage on the footway
       must be upheld under all circumstances.
2.2    JCMBPS recognises and supports the benefits of providing safe and
       convenient conditions for cycling.
2.3    Safety and peace of mind of footway and carriageway users must have
       precedence over all other issues.
2.4    A proper balance must be established between vehicular traffic, cyclists and
       pedestrians so that each does not adversely affect the others.
2.5    JCMBPS supports the following hierarchy, adopted by the Welsh Assembly
       Government and enlightened local authorities throughout the UK.

JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
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                     Guide Dog Chairman: Peter Barker OBE


            Disabled people; then
            Pedestrians; then
            Cyclists; then
            Public transport; then
            Freight deliveries; and then
            Other motorised modes.

2.6   This hierarchy should be reflected in the reallocation of road space and its
      subsequent design and management.

3.    The issues
3.1   DPTAC, the government‟s advisory committee on access in transport and the
      built environment, commissioned a MORI survey into the attitudes of disabled
      people to public transport (2002). The research findings show that the poor
      condition of the pedestrian environment is the major cause of concern to
      disabled people, and that disabled people did not consider that those
      responsible for providing and operating the pedestrian environment
      sufficiently understand their requirements. It is also notable that the research
      showed that visually impaired respondents are significantly more likely to rate
      streets and pavements poorly than other disabled people.

3.2   For blind, deafblind and partially sighted people the walking environment is
      fundamental to independent mobility, both for complete local journeys and for
      accessing and interchange with public transport services. Independent
      mobility of blind and partially sighted people is more restricted than that of the
      general disabled population. RNIB survey of 1991, “Blind and partially sighted
      adults in Britain” found that, while 87% of the general population over 65 had
      gone out alone in the previous week only 42% of blind and partially sighted
      people over 60 had done soiii. Further, research shows that a quarter of blind
      and partially sighted adults never go out of their home on their own rising to
      nearly a third of those over 65iv

3.3   Cycling on footpaths and footways is one of a range of problems in the
      pedestrian environment identified in RNIB researchv (Rights of Way, 1999)
      and in Guide Dogs research (Safer Streets Survey, 2004)vi. Others include
      obstructions, poor path surfaces, poor location and design of street furniture,
      lack of safe road crossings, lack of tactile paving, cars parked on pavements,
      overhanging vegetation and litter.

3.4   Cycling on footpaths and footways is undoubtedly a major cause of concern
      to blind, deafblind and partially sighted pedestrians. RNIB research showed
      almost universal condemnation for shared use facilities by visually impaired
      people with 96% thinking it either essential or desirable that there were no
      shared pavements.vii


JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
                    Tel: 01189 838359 Fax: 01189 835477

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                      Guide Dog Chairman: Peter Barker OBE



3.5   The problem with cyclists is that their presence is unnerving and potentially
      dangerous, the perception of the danger caused can reduce the confidence
      to go out independently.
3.6   Research by the Cycling Touring Club (2000)viii showed how widespread
      these concerns were among the general public. Half of the pedestrians and
      cyclists feared crashes.


4     Specifications for pedestrian and cyclist provision

4.1   In all areas:

4.1.1 Pedestrian routes should always provide a minimum obstacle free clear
      passage of 2.0m in accordance with government guidelines in Inclusive
      Mobilityix. This will allow two wheelchair users to pass. Where 2m is not
      possible because of physical constraints 1.5m should be the minimum width
      of the pedestrian path.

4.1.2 Properly segregated adjacent pedestrian and cyclist facilities are only
      acceptable where there is sufficient width to accommodate both users‟
      needs. The pedestrian side of the facility should always provide an adequate
      minimum obstacle free clear passage.

4.1.3 In all types of route it should be clear through signage and other information
      that pedestrians have precedence over cyclists.
4.1.4 Effective visual and tactile signage must be used to indicate any entry or exit
      points to pedestrian routes.
4.1.5 Suitable and safe arrangements must be made for pedestrian access to all
      footway amenities, for example, crossing points, bus stops, telephone boxes,
      rest places and public toilet facilities etc.
4.1.6 All routes must be provided with warnings to cyclists to take care and give
      right of way to pedestrians.
4.1.7 Adjacent or shared cyclist and pedestrian facilities should never be permitted
      within the following types of location, which are totally inappropriate for
      cycling;

         pedestrianised areas

         promenades

         shopping areas and footways




JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
                    Tel: 01189 838359 Fax: 01189 835477

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                      Guide Dog Chairman: Peter Barker OBE


4.1.8 Where a cycle path is required in these situations, for instance to ensure the
      continuity of a cycle route, a totally separate route must be provided.

4.2   Provision for cyclists
4.2.1 The provision of safe, well designed and convenient cycle routes is important.
      The National Cycling Strategy states that: „most cycling takes place on the
      road and this will continue to be the case. So it is essential that the road
      network is made suitable for cycling‟. Traffic management to enable safe on
      road cycle routes should be actively promoted. The provision of safe cycle
      routes separate from both vehicular and pedestrian traffic, as advocated in
      the London cycling plan, should be explored, particularly in busy areas.
4.2.2 An on highway solution should always be the first consideration and only if this
      has been properly explored and eliminated as an option should shared routes
      with pedestrians be considered. As stated in Inclusive Mobility (DfT 2002)
      shared use facilities should be regarded as a last resort; every effort should be
      made to keep cyclists and pedestrians fully separated.

4.2.3 A hierarchy of solutions has been adopted by some local authorities following
      the principles set out in Local Transport Note 2/86. West Sussex County
      Council, in their cycle track design notex state that the hierarchy of solutions
      should be used only when the more favoured option of an on highway solution
      has been eliminated, and one is reconciled to a off highway solution.

4.2.4 JCMBPS recommend the following hierarchy of provision be adopted for off
      highway routes if on road provision has been fully considered and rejected.

4.3   Hierarchy of provision.

4.3.1 Parallel routes dedicated to pedestrians and cycles, separated by a verge
      (minimum verge width 1m, absolute min. width of 0.5m where space constraints
      do not allow 1m)

4.3.2 Parallel routes separated by a change in level (50 to 100mm kerb up stand).
      Footway higher.
      Minimum 3m wide where unbounded, 3.5m wide where bounded on both
      sides. The pedestrian part must be 2m with a minimum of 1.5m.

4.3.3 Parallel routes separated by a barrier such as a hedge (which must be well
      maintained) or railing, 1 metre high. This may be more suitable for short
      lengths.
      Minimum 3.4m wide where unbounded, 3.9m wide where bounded on both
      sides.
      Any barrier should have -
            Suitable gaps where necessary
            A lower rail no higher than 200mm above ground


JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
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           No sharp or protruding parts
         Contrast in colour and tone with the background against which it is seen

4.3.4 Segregation by a raised white line 20mm high (minimum 12mm), 150mm wide
      with sloping sides and a flat top 50mm wide. This should only be used where
      there is a lateral constraint that prevents separation as described in 1 or 2
      above and where both pedestrian and cyclist traffic will be light, and the
      following conditions are met:

         The pedestrian part of the footway is an obstacle free clear passage of
          2m, (minimum 1.5m)
         The raised white line must be continuous and run the entire length of the
          route except at crossing points.
         Tactile surfaces, as specified in the DfT Tactile Paving Guidancexi, are
          laid, ladder pattern with the bars at right angles to the direction of travel at
          the pedestrian part, and parallel to the direction of travel at the cyclist part.
          These tactile surfaces should be laid at the start and end of the shared
          segregated route, at regular intervals along the route, at any entry and
          exit points and junctions with other pedestrian or cycle routes.
         A permanent different surface texture and colour is laid, such as paving
          slabs for the footway and tarmac for the cycle way. For long routes where
          this may not be practical these surfaces must at least be installed at all
          entry and exit points where pedestrians and/or cyclists may enter or leave
          the route and at regular intervals along the route.
         At approaches to points where cyclists and pedestrians may cross or
          converge, road crossing points for example, the cyclist facility should be
          surfaced with a material that effectively reduces speed and produces
          noise.

4.3.6 A shared route with a flat white line down the centre is never acceptable.

4.3.7 Where physical or other constraints mean that none of the above hierarchy of
      provision can be followed, for instance due to narrow paths, this must mean
      that shared use is not appropriate and alternative separate provision for
      cyclists must be made.

4.4   Junctions

4.4.1 Particular care must be taken where adjacent pedestrian and cyclist routes
      approach junctions or road crossings. The pedestrian must always have
      control of road crossings.


4.5   Rural areas



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4.5.1 Wholly shared routes, such as a forest footpath, will only be acceptable in
      sparsely populated areas where routes are used by few people infrequently.
      They will not be acceptable in rural areas which are popular tourist
      destinations, or in recreational parks or rural paths which provide access to or
      between populated areas or destinations.

5     General requirements
5.1   Management and Maintenance
5.1   Path surfaces must be regularly monitored and repairs carried out. Regular
      cleaning is also essential. Well designed pedestrian and cycle facilities will
      become inaccessible if litter and debris is allowed to collect, or fallen leaves
      or ice in winter not effectively dealt with. As in all pedestrian environments it
      is important to have effective reporting of day to day problems and issues
      that affect accessibility. Information on how to report defective lighting or
      pavement obstructions should be clear, accessible and explained to all users
      of the pedestrian environment.
5.2   Pedestrian environment enhancement
5.2.1 Proposals to improve the pedestrian environment, or budgets to implement
      proposals, must not be conditional on sharing the route with cyclists. The
      choice between a resurfaced and well lit path, shared with cyclists or
      retaining a poor pedestrian path is not a real choice. Such proposals put
      pedestrians firmly at the bottom of any hierarchy if improvements to
      pedestrian routes are only considered when they will benefit cyclists!
5.3   Consultation
5.3.1 Shared facilities should never be introduced before full and effective
      consultation has taken place with all local relevant organisations, especially
      those representing visually impaired people and other disabled people
      (including people with sensory and learning impairments), Local Access
      Groups and rehabilitation officers. As with all consultation exercises the
      requirements of the consultees, including the use of alternative formats, must
      be considered and effective feedback procedures put in place. The Joint
      Committee can provide details of local organisations representing visually
      impaired people.
5.3.2 Any organisations developing national or regional programmes or guidelines
      must consult with national/regional organisations representing pedestrians,
      elderly and disabled people, including people with visual impairments.
5.4   Research


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5.4.1 Research into the use of adjacent or shared use paths, segregated or
      unsegregated, must ensure that the views of potential users of the path who
      do not use it are effectively included. There is concern that research
      conducted among pedestrians who have continued to use a shared path will
      not include the views of visually impaired people and others who no longer
      use the path.
5.5   Enforcement
5.5.1 Regulations concerning cycling in shared facilities should be enforced by the
      use of fixed penalty fines.
5.5.2 Regulations relating to the prohibition of cycling on footpaths and other
      pedestrian areas should be enforced at all times by fixed penalty fines.
5.5.3 Any profits from fines should be used for pedestrian environment
      improvement.
5.6   Education
5.6.1 When contemplating the introduction of adjacent or shared facilities a
      comprehensive public information campaign with special emphasis on
      cyclists and pedestrians must be implemented by the local authority or other
      organisation responsible for the facility. Information on the importance of
      considering the needs of pedestrians with disabilities should be provided to
      cyclists purchasing cycles.
5.6.2 Cycle proficiency programmes should be encouraged in schools and should
      include training modules on the needs of elderly and disabled people in
      particular.
5.7   Publicity
5.7.1 A general publicity campaign must be mounted which indicates both the
      rights of pedestrians and the benefits to cyclists.
5.7.2 Such publicity should be carried out at three levels - nationally by the
      Department for Transport, locally by local authorities, and both nationally and
      locally by disability organisations and others including the Cyclists Touring
      Club and Sustrans.
5.8   Review
5.8.1 Any approved project must be reviewed after one year following consultation
      with local bodies to which any evidence of problems or benefits must be
      widely publicised.



JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
                    Tel: 01189 838359 Fax: 01189 835477

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                          Guide Dog Chairman: Peter Barker OBE


5.8.2 Financial provision must be available to implement change if that is
      necessary.


For further guidance on walking strategies and pedestrian environments
please see the JCMBPS policy statement on Walking Strategies.


Carol Thomas
01/04/2004



i
 Figures from the 1999 DSS Research report No.94 `Disability in Great Britain‟
indicated there were an estimated 1.97 million people with a significant sight loss.
ii
 Encouraging walking: Advice to Local Authorities DETR 2000 and On the Move by
Foot DfT 2003
iii
    RNIB, 1991, Blind and partially sighted adults in Britain – available from RNIB
Customer Services
iv
    GDBA, 1999, A New Way Forward – available from GDBA 0118 9835 555
v
   Rights of Way: Transport and Mobility for Visually Impaired People in the UK,
RNIB 1999
vi
    Guide Dogs, 2004, Safer Streets Survey
vii
     Within reason: Access to services for blind and partially sighted people. Thomas
(A) RNIB 1998
viii
     Cyclists and Pedestrians – attitudes to shared use facilities. Cycling Touring Club,
Surrey 2000
ix
      Inclusive Mobility, Department for Transport 2002
x
      West Sussex County Council Feb 2000
xi
      Guidance on the use of tactile paving surfaces, DETR (now DfT) 1998




    JCMBPS Secretariat, Hillfields, Burghfield Common, Reading, Berkshire RG7 3YG.
                        Tel: 01189 838359 Fax: 01189 835477

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