Bike tubes

The VEIL 25 year vision sees great changes to the way we move around our cities and neighbourhoods. Private cars are not as practical, or as widely used, as they once were. Exploring this theme led to investigations of cycling and how the cycling experience might be improved to be more enjoyable and convenient. Bike Tubes are one solution in this domain.

The Bike Tube urban transport strategy provides for dedicated enclosed bike-ways attached to the existing car-based freeway network. The infrastructure that once privileged the automobile (at great cost) is now re-invigorated, providing a medium distance commuting facility for human and battery powered bikes (and possibly, trikes).

The Bike Tubes provide separate bike lanes that utilise the road structures and air-rights of the freeway network (leaving a single lane for the reduced vehicle traffic). The ‘tube’ provides protection from the rain and cold winds in winter and the hot sun in summer. They peel off at key entry and exit points on the freeway network and connect to the secondary road network, providing very fast and convenient travel paths for bike riders. Bike tubes can be developed as a ‘tolled’ system using RFID tags.

The tubes are design and landscaped to provide safety zones and stopping points. If more of the existing road system was release from use by cars, then the tubes could connect to spaces used for urban food production. Possibilities exist for new services in this future system, the tolling system, bike maintenance, cafes, urban food distribution.

The tubes radiate out from the CBD on the freeway network out to about 10 Kms.

There is still much work to be investigated within this concept. If you are interested in Bike Tubes as either a development project or would like to run this idea as a studio project please contact us.

Idea seeders: Michael Trudgeon and Prof Chris Ryan.

Michael Trudgeon is a member of the VEIL Hub Alumni he was a member of the initial workshops and atelier held January 2007 and participated in the VEIL Hub Autumn 2007 on behalf of the Industrial Design Department at RMIT. Michael is also a PhD candidate at RMIT and a director and principal designer of Crowd Productions.