Fewer than 5% of Cork cyclists surveyed believe the City Council is doing a good job in ensuring existing cycle infrastructure is fit for purpose.
The finding forms part of the results of an online survey by the Cork Cycling Campaign, who say the views expressed by over 600 respondents vindicate the issues they have been raising with City Hall, such as infrastructure and enforcement.
Asked “Do you feel that Cork City Council is doing a good job in ensuring existing cycle infrastructure is fit for purpose?”, 4.7% of respondents to the online survey said yes, 78.1% said no, 13.7% said “Not sure”, while others gave their own responses such as “Not even close”, and “They are doing a reasonable job given their budgets”.
Almost three-quarters (74.1%) said safety concerns are the biggest obstacles they face when cycling in Cork, followed by the weather (9.2%), and hills (4.9%), while 58.9% said they do not feel that An Garda Síochána in Cork appreciate the risks that people who cycle face on our roads.
More than half (51.4%) said they encounter cars parked on cycle lanes on almost every trip they take on a bike in Cork, while 24.5% said it was a problem they come across “very frequently” and 13% who said it was a regular issue.
Just 11.2% said they infrequently or rarely encounter cars on cycle lanes.
Asked on a scale of one to five, from no increase to significant increase, if cars parked in cycle lanes increase the dangers of cycling, 71.2% chose five or ‘significant increase’ while 2.2% selected the first point on the scale, indicating no increase.
Conn Donovan of the Cork Cycling Campaign said they were heartened to see that 76% of respondents were not members of the group and that the survey findings mirror concerns they have been seeking to address.
“It is reassuring to see the issues we have been raising are the issues faced by cyclists in Cork every day,” he said.
Mr Donovan said a question asking respondents to rate efforts taken by their employer to promote cycling in the workplace as a commuter option drew a spread of rankings.
“This would suggest that while some employers are great to facilitate cyclists, others could be doing more,” he said.
More than four-in-ten (43.6%) said they dress for their destination while cycling, suggesting a large number use the mode of transport for commuting purposes.
Mr Donovan also pointed to findings on helmet wearing and motor tax which he said challenge established narratives surrounding cyclists.
Almost two-thirds (66.2%) said they wear a helmet “all of the time”, with a further 13.4% stating they wear one “sometimes”.
Eight-in-ten said they paid motor tax in the last three years, and a slightly higher figure (81.5%) said they typically use a private car over the course of a month.
Mr Donovan said the message from the City Council from the survey findings is that Cork cyclists want enforcement and maintenance of cycle lanes.
He said he believes the Council should reconsider its stances on issues such as introducing segregating cycle lanes at illegal car parking blackspots.
“The majority of funding for cycling does come from central government, but there are lots the Council can do cheaply and effectively to improve things now,” he said.