Whether in towns or city centres, accessibility is a becoming a recurring issue for local authorities. Getting pedestrians, cyclists and motorized vehicles to share the same space can be a real headache. For the safety of both residents and motorists, this section is regulated. The installation of concrete bollards is subject to certain conditions.
What are concrete bollards used for?
These small concrete bollards come in a variety of shapes and can be found in most towns and urban areas. Concrete bollards are a type of urban furniture for public spaces. But what are they for and where are they placed ?
Demarcation and safety in pedestrian zones
Concrete bollards, or anti-parking bollards, are used by local authorities to designate no-parking zones for vehicles. When placed between pavements and roads, they provide a safe zone for pedestrians and/or cyclists.
They can also be found in town-centre squares and public spaces. Markets, parks and building entrances are often protected by concrete bollards. They are often used to prevent motorists from parking in pedestrian areas (illegal parking).
Traffic control in car parks and on roads
Concrete anti-parking bollards have other functions as well. They can be installed in underground and outdoor car parks to facilitate traffic flow and access. Bollards can also be installed between two lanes of alternating traffic to improve traffic flow in city centres.
The weight and height of bollards act as a deterrent to keep traffic in a single lane. These demarcation systems can help traffic to flow more smoothly in car parks and city and town-centre roads.
Demarcation and the protection of private property
They can also be installed along the boundaries of private property. They are often found near motorways and trunk roads, they are used as distance markers and demarcation for work zones.
They can also be installed in front of buildings and businesses which are at greater risk of burglary or vandalism. This particularly applies to banks and shops in busy city centres. Stores and shop windows are more vulnerable targets in streets where demonstrations take place, for example. These types of bollards are designed to deter people and protect high-risk businesses.
Which regulations apply to concrete bollards ?
There are several regulations which apply to the placement of concrete bollards. Local authorities and town halls cannot just put them where they like. They must take certain criteria into account to avoid making roads inaccessible to motorists, pedestrians or cyclists.
Authorization must be obtained from the highway authorities before concrete bollards are installed. They have the skills needed to draw up the plans and define access routes, they also give the go-ahead for the project. Street furniture is also subject to accessibility standards.
Compliance with PMR standards
Urban areas must be accessible to everyone. This requires the creation of passage ways which are wide enough to facilitate access for people with disabilities (wheelchairs, canes for the visually impaired, etc.) or reduced mobility (pregnant women with strollers, etc.). Bollards must not obstruct the passage of users, unless they can be moved.
Compliance with installation standards
To avoid obstructing roadways, anti-parking bollards and posts must be adapted according to a number of criteria :
- The widths of roads and pavements
- The number of bollards installed according to the space available and size of the bollards chosen
- Distances must be proportional to the constraints defined above
The usual distance between bollards is 1.40 metres. But this may vary depending on the constraints. It must not be less than 1.20 metres.
The bollards must also meet some minimum height requirements to be properly detected. The latter varies with the diameter. The minimum height is 50 cm and the diameter cannot be less than 28 cm.
Respect for pedestrians and vehicular traffic
Obstacles must be sufficiently visible to motorists, pedestrians and cyclists in order to prevent accidents. In fact, depending on their location, size and colour, concrete bollards should ideally contrast with the surrounding environment.
For example, if a concrete bollard is placed on a street corner and is the same colour as the pavement, it will be harder to identify. This has the opposite effect to the intended one: instead of making the pavement safer, it creates a hazard for pedestrians and cyclists.
Concrete bollard shapes to suit every situation
Concrete parking bollards come in many shapes and models. Francioli offers various ranges that not only provide security, but also carry out other functions :
- Practical functions: square concrete bollards, protective bollards and ram bollards can act as urban benches
- Aesthetic functions: the ""Patrimoine"" urban bollard offers an attractive visual appearance