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Designing a new road layout: Things to consider with bollard placement

Bollards are designed to mitigate danger from vehicles to pedestrians. They can prevent accidents where there are areas of busy traffic both on the road and on foot by creating a visual delineation between a pedestrian area and traffic area. Choosing where to place bollards needs a considerable amount of thought since it doesn’t just determine safety, but convenience, accessibility and pedestrian traffic. It is important to take a holistic view when designing bollards and their placement. Here are a few things to consider:


Restricting pedestrian movement

Inevitably bollards will restrict some pedestrian movement by blocking possible paths and causing some inconvenience. Bollards should not be placed where pedestrians are required to walk in a more dangerous place such as the road to avoid them, nor should they be as restrictive that they significantly reduce the pedestrian flow. On average, bollards spaced 1.2m apart are unlikely to stop pedestrian movement by a noticeable amount, such as speed of walking or their body position.


Human factors influencing placement

When assessing an area for bollard placement, the following things should be determined:

- How much the speed of pedestrian movement will be reduced by. This should not be above 82 people passing each metre per minute.

- The amount of space taken up by the bollards and how this will impact the pedestrian density. A density of over 40 people within every 10 square metres is considered an unacceptable level.

- The effect on the natural pathways taken by pedestrians and how these may be altered by the bollard placement.

- Areas of conflict where natural pedestrian pathways cross or cause direction changes, as bollards should not be placed here.


Aesthetics of the area and bollards

Bollards are highly versatile and come in a huge range of different designs, heights, shapes and sizes. See our full range…. When choosing which bollards to implement, the surrounding area should be considered to ensure that they fit the aesthetic of the area. For example, if the area is comprised of largely contemporary buildings, then modern-looking bollards would be a suitable choice. In crowded areas, it may not be helpful to have short bollards which are not visible easily as it may cause accidents and pose a safety risk.

Another thing to think about is how the bollards should be physically arranged and spread out. For example, bollards arranged in a linear fashion perpendicular to the pedestrian direction of flow cause very little disruption to pedestrian movement, easily fitting through the gaps without divergence from their pathway. On the other hand, linear bollards placed parallel to the main flow direction present more of a continuous and potentially greater movement for pedestrians to avoid collisions.


Put safety first by consulting experts

Bollard placement comes down to both practicality and safety. Unsuccessful bollard positioning can aim to eliminate danger yet cause health and safety issues with pedestrian interaction. The aim is to reach a compromise between protecting pedestrians from traffic risks, whilst maintaining convenience. It is beneficial to conduct research into your proposed layout and style of bollard. For maximum usability and minimum disruption, it is vital to allow a recognised company with expertise in bollard design and placement to carry out the design work needed and actual implementation of the bollards.

For more information about bollards suitable for your scheme, from advice to the complete implementation process, get in touch with Furnitubes today by calling 020 8378 3200.

Author: Anna Curran - Follow us on


Categories Bollards

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