Audit of Cycle Parking at Railway Stations in Borough of Richmond

“Although half the nation owns a bicycle and 60% live within a 15-minute ride of a station, only 2% of passengers currently use their cycle to access the local station.”
Source – Dft

Compare this to Holland where:

“All major stations in Holland provide extensive cycle parking, usually based around a cycle hub which also offers additional secure storage for a fee of about £1 a day, together with repairs and cycle hire for as little as £3 a day. A typical Dutch intercity station would store 4,000 cycles, but at Leiden this rises to 9,000 and the plan is to more than double this to 22,000 in the near future.” Source – Dft

There are fourteen railway stations in the Borough of Richmond, each with great potential for increasing the number of people arriving by bicycle. RCC members carried out an audit of all thirteen stations and these audits can be accessed by clicking on the station name in the table below.

Check out your nearest station and the recommendations from the audits. These are live documents so let us know of anything we’ve missed, new issues or things you’d like to see improved at campaign@richmondlcc.co.uk Having accurate information is vital to influence future consultations and any future updgrades of facilities.

Station (Click on station name to see audit)  National Rail Cycles Reported Stolen (1)  Cycle Parking Spaces (2)  % Usage of Parking (3)  Annual Passengers (4)  DfT Target Spaces (1/20 passengers) (5) 
Barnes Station Plan 5 62 TBC 855,109 117
Barnes Bridge Station Plan 1 14 0 233,627 32
Fulwell Station Plan 3 20 40 242,576 33
Hampton Station Plan 3 49 53 610,021 84
Hampton Wick Station Plan 11 82 39 439,060 60
Kew Gardens Station Plan 1 34 141 2,028,668 278
Mortlake Station Plan 6 102 63 992,791 136
North Sheen Station Plan 0 0 n/a 160,160 22
Richmond Station Plan 9 128 125 6,742,049 924
St Margarets Station Plan 1 12 100+ 775,058 106
Strawberry Hill Station Plan 1 16 56 507,697 70
Teddington Station Plan 7 92 52 1,254,146 172
Twickenham Station Plan 14 60 100+ 2,460,099 337
Whitton Station Plan 4 10 100+ 683,975 94

(1) Bikes reported stolen by the British Transport Police, (01/06/09 – 07/03/10). Source, BTP
(2) Bike parking spaces as observed as part of 2010 RCC Parking Audit
(3) Based on number of spaces observed full as part of 2010 RCC Parking Audit
(4) Obtained from BTP website, http://stats.btp.police.uk  Accessed October 2010.
(5) DfT Report targets 5% of passengers arriving by bicycle – equates to one space per 20 passengers
(6) In Holland, where up to 40% of passengers arrive by bicycle, there is on average one space per 3 passengers

RCC would like to see improvements in three areas that would help realise the potential for growth in cycling to stations in the Borough – Security, Provision and Access.

Security

“Cycle theft is a serious barrier to increased cycling – National research indicates that of those who suffer the theft of a bicycle, 24% no longer cycle, and 66% cycle less often” – Source – TfL

The recent campaign by SmarterTravelRichmond highlights the need for better security to re duce cycle thefts. As a minimum, station cycle parking should:

  • Be easily accessible, close to the station entrances and in an area well frequented to dissuade cycle thefts
  • Be well lit
  • Be covered
  • Allow locking of both wheels and be correctly spaced
  • Have CCTV coverage (which should cover the cycle parking)

Where demand is greatest, more secure cycle parking should be provided. The following are examples of more secure parking (both subscription and free):

There are plenty of documents out there which outline the key requirements for well designed cycle parking:
Cycling England – Cycle Parking
TfL Cycle Parking Standards
Cambridge Cycle Parking Guide

Provision

“[cycle] parking facilities…should aim to meet the existing demand (including suppressed demand), and provide capacity for future growth.” Source – DfT

Demand clearly exceeds supply at several stations within the Borough and there is the issue of suppressed demand – those put off cycling to stations due to lack of adequate spaces or poor access or security.

There are guidelines for the number of spaces that should be provided at stations. In Holland, on average they have one for every three daily commuters. The 2009 DfT report ‘Better Rail Stations’, proposed a national target of 5% of passengers cycling to stations (compared to Holland where it is currently 40%) Richmond station, to meet the DfT guideline, would require 900 stands. On the same basis as Holland, it would have over 6,000 spaces! Clearly there is some way to go before we reach standards of Holland, but there is no reason why we can’t increase usage significantly and space exists to expand the current parking.

Access

“Often a Bike and Rail journey is prevented by a hazardous (perceived and real) or circuitous route for cyclists to the station. Source – DfT

One of the main barriers to increased cycling to the Borough’s stations is poor consideration of access routes for cyclists. A good example of this Richmond station, which has a gap in provision from the recently improved A316 cycle paths. Each of the station audits attempted to review access and provide recommendations for improvement. Any future works around these stations should take into account these recommendations.

When routes and parking is provided, clear signage should be installed to direct cyclists. One of the criticisms of the new cycle parking at Richmond station is that many cyclists are unaware of existence.

Where footbridges have to be crossed, ‘wheeling channels’ should be provided, as have been successfully demonstrated at many railway stations.