Having good facilities at work is crucial when encouraging people to cycle. Speak to people who already ride to work and ask them what they want. If you have a Bicycle User Group (BUG) ask them, if not set one up. Another useful tool is a simple survey asking people how they travel in and what facilities they would like to see – you could then use this to draw up a workplace travel plan.
LCC can assess your workplace cycling facilities and grade them with our London Cycling Survey.
Secure cycle parking is one of the most important facilities, because if people are worried that their bike will be stolen, they're much less likely to bring it to work. What you install will depend on what space you have in your workplace and who needs to access it. A general rule of thumb is the more convenient the cycle parking, the more people will use it, so identify how people get to your buildings by bike. If you have pressure on your car parks or need to reduce car parking then 12 cycles take up one car parking space.
Here are some useful guidelines for workplace cycle parking:
• Take some time to research bike stands before buying them, and speak to cyclists about what works and what doesn’t.
• Establish the most secure and most convenient location for bike stands (unused stands are a waste of money). A Cycle Parking Audit is a good way of gathering evidence you need and getting expert advice.
• Don’t forget parking for visitors, customers or students – you may want to ask the council for on-street parking to supplement what you are doing for employees.
• Consult with your employees who cycle before installation.
• Plan for future growth. If you put in good cycle parking you may be surprised how quickly it fills up.
• Make sure the stands are installed correctly.
• Consider providing a good cycle pump and some basic tools for minor repairs – these need not be expensive but cyclists will be grateful if they have a puncture.
• Put up a local cycling map to show safe routes to and from your building – cycle maps are free from TfL.
• Follow-up to make sure users are satisfied.
Showers are not normally necessary for those cycling on short journeys of 30 minutes or less (6-7 miles), however it is a good facility for those with longer or hilly commutes. Showers are not only useful to cyclists, you’ll find runners making use of them at lunchtime as well.
Some workplaces arrange a deal with local gyms to use their facilities. A changing room for people to change and freshen up may be a good compromise if you can’t put in showers.
Drying room/ Lockers
A place to dry wet waterproofs, clothes and towels is useful, especially if you don’t want this in the main office areas. Lockers are a good incentive to store items or hang smart work clothes. Cycle commutes will often bring in a week’s worth of clean clothes in one go or use local cleaners to wash and iron shirts.
A workplace bike pool provides well-maintained bikes for use by employees – typically for work-related trips such as moving between sites or visiting clients. Often people who may not want to cycle to work will use a bike to go to a meeting, especially if it’s a nice day and they can’t face the tube. Cycling can often be quicker then using public transport or a taxi.
LCC can help you setup a bike pool scheme.
Rewards for staff
A great way to reward existing cyclists is to arrange for a mechanic to come in and check out bikes and do minor repairs. Other rewards for staff could be bike breakfasts, free cycle skills sessions or LCC membership.
LCC’s Cycling Projects deliver a wide range of cycling events, projects and programmes for private and public sector clients. For more info email firstname.lastname@example.org and to find out how we can help you.