Bicycles

The Kolelinia - a rush-hour bike-path in the sky

The Kolelinia - a rush-hour bi...
The Kolelinia concept puts a bike lane above the hustle and bustle of city traffic
The Kolelinia concept puts a bike lane above the hustle and bustle of city traffic
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The Kolelinia concept puts a bike lane above the hustle and bustle of city traffic
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Riding a bicycle through city traffic is often dangerous enough to be considered an extreme sport, but a concept by architect, Martin Angelov, takes the thrill of city cycling to a whole new level – literally. His design proposes a new type of bike lane, based on steel wires and suspended up to 4.5 meters (14.5 feet) above the hustle and bustle found at street level.

The above picture of the Kolelinia - a contraction of the Bulgarian words for ‘bike” (kolelo) and ‘line’ (linia) – might look a bit like riding a bike on a tightrope, but the bike tire actually sits inside a U-shaped furrow, while the outer edge of the left handlebar is attached to a steel wire for stability. For added safety cyclists would also be expected to wear a safety harness.

The Kolelinia is intended to join existing bike lanes that are currently separated by areas shared with motorists – possibly with a bridge-type line. Angelov also suggests the Kolelinia could be used for special tourist lines or even longer transportation lines.

Although the concept provides an interesting solution to an all too common problem, there would appear to be some kinks that need to be ironed out before such a system could be implemented.

Firstly getting cyclists with a fear of heights to use such a device might be difficult – even at a maximum height of 4.5 meters.

Also the time needed to hook the handlebar and safety harness up to the device would need to be kept to a minimum – particularly on shorter lines like the connection of two bike lanes.

And if longer Kolelinias were to be built there would need to be some system for overtaking. Otherwise all the Kolelinia is likely to achieve is moving the traffic jam up into the air a few meters as everyone comes to a crawl behind the slowest cyclist.

But to be fair, Angelov admits that building a prototype is the only way to identify and rectify the problems of the Korelinia, which is exactly what he hopes to do.

He plans to hand build a 15 -20 meter long prototype of the concept. Then, after dealing with any issues made obvious from the prototype Angelov hopes a bigger version could be built – possibly a short tourist line in a city or an extreme sport line in nature surrounds.

Kolelinia via ETA.

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17 comments
Aussie Bob
Great idea :-) But what about the pollution rising up from the traffic below? I used to ride from Strathfield to the CBD (Sydney, Australia) most mornings and had to give it up because I nearly choked on the fumes! Cycling above the traffic does appeal to me though :-) Aussie Bob.
Pieter
Flat tyres, toilet breaks, U-turns, passing slow pokes, corners?, rest stops, fear of heights....
This has got to be the lame-brained idea of the year. NO, the decade.... No wait, the century.
JPAR
Another problem, won;t a suspended stell wire have some element of \'sag\' in the middle, and how much will sag increase with a 15 stone cyclist sat in the middle of it? Sounds like a bouncy ride to me, and it\'ll become a series of dips/hills.
A better solution would be to forget about using a bike altogether, and focus on an electric powered vehicle to sit on the wire and be pulled along... hang on, thats a cable car !!!
felix
I agree there are quite a few big problems with this, still, the basic idea of bike lanes ABOVE the car lanes is sound, I\'d love to see it here in london.
Facebook User
i like the idea of riding above traffic, but a bike designed to hang on a cable would be more desirable, and safer........sort of like a ski lift that you peddle
Facebook User
I hate this idea. The areas of town that have all the wires for trolley cars already look so overcrowded- last thing we need is more wires stretched across air space. Driver liability is an issue- if an idiot biker loses balance and falls into traffic- can he sue the car that hits him?
jdupree
Tread lightly here folks, give this idea a chance. Any negative posters I ask this of you: What have you done to address this problem?
Facebook User
This idea is great, but we could build on this though. Why have bikes at all? Why not have a clear tube made of UV resistant plastic wherein small capsules seating 1 or 2 people could move. Overtaking slow movers would just mean \"flying\" over them, where the entire inner surface could be used as a \"road\". The tube could be filled with air-conditioned negative-ionized air. Toilets or other stopovers could be provided along the way by means of bypasses for these tubes, an analogy would be to look at capsules as blood cells and tubes as arteries and veins. This tube network could encompass an entire city. Hospitals could have ambulance capsules. Police could have capsules of their own. One could even extend this tube right to one\'s doorstep.
eecolii
isnt most pollution heavier than O2, what about windy days though why not have a railing on the outer side
but i agree lame idea as it sits, seems like a lot of engineering for the bike which is so elegant in its own simplicity
it might make a great extreme olympic sport if you tilted it like the luge run
Facebook User
I don\'t think this was intended for Americans... or ANY country with a very high level of liability claims ( eg: Australia! :P). Would be great in most other places though. U-steel won\'t warp as much, and if the clips that go on the handle bars were < ok, like a T-bar at the Ski resort, goes round and round a circuit>, with riders reconnecting at regular stops to the next circuit - or pedelling past slower riders on the road. It could work, or could crash. Do the prototype!!