Summary of Cambridge City Council’s Cycle Parking Standards from 1996 – 26th May 2003

These standards have now been superceded by new ones but are retained here online for the purposes of comparison.

  • The cycle parking standards are compulsory. They cannot be modified or adjusted except where specifically allowed for in the standards document. [section 1.2 and local plan policy TR18 in appendix A]
  • The stated objectives of the council’s parking standards, for both cars and cycles, are to “reduce growth in the length and number of motorised journeys”, to “encourage alternative means of travel which have less environmental impact” and to “reduce reliance on the private car”. [section 2.1]
  • The cycle parking standards require that “Secure cycle parking” must be provided for almost all residential and non-residential developments, as shown in the following tables:
Residential use
Cycle Spaces
Hotels and guest houses
1 for every 2 employees working at the same time
On merit
Residential care accommodation
1 for every 2 members of staff
On merit
Residential school, college or training centre
1 per student
1 bedroom houses
1 per dwelling
2 or more bedroom houses
2 per dwelling
Student residential accommodation
1 per bedspace
Houses in multiple accommodation
1 per unit

Non-residential use
Cycle Spaces
Stores of all sizes including “small stores”, “convenience superstores” and “retail warehouses”.
1 per 25 m2 GFA
Financial and professional services
1 per 25 m2 GFA
Pubs, restaurants, dining rooms and cafes
1 per 10 m2 public floor space or dining area
Hot take-away food
On merit
Offices, R&D and light industrial
1 per 30 m2 GFA
General industrial
1 per 40 m2 GFA
Storage and distribution
1 per 40 m2 GFA
Clinics and surgeries
2 per consulting room plus
1 per professional member of staff
Educational institutions, excluding residential
cycle spaces for 30% of children between 5 and 12 years old
cycle spaces for 60% of children over 12 years old
University faculty buildings
1 per student using the site, plus
1 per 2 members of staff
1 per 7.5 m2 public floor space
Auditoria, museums and exhibition venues
On merit
Sports and recreational facilities and swimming baths
1 per 25 m2 net floor area plus
1 per 15 spectator seats
1 per 3 cinema seats


  • The document is quite unambiguous that “secure” cycle parking “must make provision for immobilisation of cycles, for example by means of cycle racks to which the frame can be locked, garage space or cycle stores”.

    It does not explicitly demand that the frame must be capable of being locked, however.

  • The document contains a brief description of ‘hoop’ racks, with a recommended spacing of 900mm between hoops, 300mm “distance across to next hoops” and 1200mm “distance between double row of hoops”.

    There is no mention of the need for suitable clearance around such parking.

    There is no mention of where cycle parking should be provided, such as near the entrance.

Possible improvements

A number of possible improvements to the standards document comes to mind:

  • Section 1.2 states that the parking standards ‘should not be exceeded’. This needs to be modified to state that this applies to car parking but not to cycle parking.
  • It should explicitly demand that the frame must be capable of being locked to an immovable object (except where a locked store or garage is provided).
  • It should mention the need for suitable clearance around cycle parking.
  • It should give some guidelines about where cycle parking should best be located.
  • A photo of some cycle parking on the front cover would be nice, to accompany the current photo of a car