The Cycle-Station Project

7.0 Research



The flexibility and multi-functionality of the Cycle-Station idea affords considerable potential for varied and significant research. Whilst a variety of possible directions have been touched upon in the above, there is obvious potential for research not only in sustainable transport futures but in the potential for it becoming a backbones infrastructure for many forms of fully environmentally sensitised projects, be they eco-educational, commercially orientated, or relating in the first instance to Green Design and architecture themselves.

Fourth Door Research has carried out the first steps of research and development. The Unit is interested in developing a range of further and more detailed research agendas in partnership with other interested parties.

The Cycle-Stations project is aimed both to publicise the opportunities of the marriage of Green Design with the development of Cycle-Centre's and as a forum to co-ordinate any centre's either built or in the planning stages into a potential country-wide network. It is aiming to develop further Cycle-Stations at strategic points aiming to bring into being a coherent and cohesive network of linked stations around the country.

The forum is also helping to co-ordinate the cohesiveness of this potential network of Stations to create publicity, information and awareness of the network as it develops, as well as the connecting routes, etc, between the stations. The project is also attempting to assist in providing information, networking interested parties, and developing and publicising new and interesting iniatives. It already has a number of green-hued architects committed to designing where possible, green Cycle-Stations. This grouping is growing to comprise an affiliation of architects, designers and other interested organisations and individuals. At the same time both a publishing and on-line website dimension is an ongoing plan, instigated to publicise this and other projects of the Fourth Door Solar-Stations programme.To date the Fourth Door Research Unit has developed a full data-base of many of the interested groups and individuals in the targeted regions. It has conducted research, and is involved in on going discussion with a variety of groups to take the project further.

Some of these Green Architects have developed imaginings and detailed working plans of their versions of Cycle Stations. One of these has been featured in the 1997 Royal Academy Architecture exhibition.

Connections have also been instigated with the Universities of Brighton and Falmouth's Multimedia Dept respectively to explore the potential of multimedia as an eco-educational instrument for the Cycle-Stations. A web site is planned with the architects plans on line, as is an initial ideas conference on the potential of Cycle-Stations.

the research unit is interested in developing a range of other possibilities, including the following

locating a cycle-station alongside or within rural recording studio, to provide visitors with a first hand experience of musicians recording, and the recording process

craft ecosystems. Xploring a variety of crafts can be woven together to form an ecology of crafts, and how computers and digitilisation can be integrated to introduce virtual crafts, pottery, etc.


these two examples go under the rubric 'hi tech/hands on'


research into how to make weather forecasting technology publically accessible. Maybe in co-operation with the University of East Anglia's Weather Forecasting Unit.

research into the urban design potential of integrating cycle stations et al into the eco-village concept

Research into the integration of forestry and woodworks resources into a Cycle- Station Ecology.


These are a few possible research programmes which could be considered.