I've been using the cycling layer of Google Maps when cycling to an area I don't know.  I liked the way it seem to crowd-source information to come up with networks.

But it has some weird ideas, having Main North Road just above the City as a "bike friendly street".  

Does anyone have any opinions on which sources to use?  How is Cycle Instead?  

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I use both on occasion. However I only treat then as suggestions, always looking for quiet side roads. Both platforms allow you drag and drop the route via another path so you can customise your route quite easily.

I didn't know you could do that.  

I appear to be wrong about dragging the route with Cycle Instead (don't use it much) but it certainly works with Google Maps. Mind you I'm still better off with the Topo map on my Garmin Etrex, I can make up the route as I go along exploring whatever road or track takes my fancy.

I use Google maps over Cycle instead generally. Google appears to be more up to date and generally gives you more realistic routes. Cycle instead very often gives me really strange routes.

I agree about Main North road being "cycle friendly", that is a serious WTF! Plenty of others in that category too. Would love to see maps updates to show where lanes disappear, marked part time only lanes, and eliminate or call out all the really crap lanes out there- which is nearly all of them. If you use the DPTI guidelines of " ride at least 1 metre away from the gutter and any parked cars", there's very few you can actually use.

Google maps is by far the superior tool, but Cycle Instead has much more accurate maps.  Google took a large step backwards when MapMaker was withdrawn from Australia a few years ago.  Thousands of community edits were reverted, and a massive amount of detail (especially walking and cycling paths) was lost.  Some of these make Google maps useless for planning routes in some areas (e.g. Goodwood).

Note that you can report a data problem, and point out where roads have been marked 'Cycle Friendly' in error.  I've had a little success in getting some places changed.  I've yet to have any missing links added.

For everything else, Google Maps seems to work much better.


I use MapMyRide, loosely based on google maps, but more user friendly.  It also allows point-to-point input of segments (not following predetermined routing) which can be used to "bypass" known mapping errors.  Allows change-of-mode (walking, cycling, motoring) within one journey - a useful feature if one is riding on the footpath, or to overcome some mapping errors.

I prefer Google maps with the cycling infrastructure overlay and a bit of human creativity.

But I find a bit of experimentation is required for the optimum route, depends on direction, time of day, types of drivers etc. Hard to know until you ride it.

I prefer CycleInstead, Google Maps often suggests strange/dangerous routes.

It took me three emails to CycleInstead over many months for them to remove the "bikelane" marking for The Grove Way (along Cobbler Creek). There is a narrow shoulder but cars/trucks regularly stray into it as they speed up and down so why it is considered a 'bikelane', I don't know (there are no bike lane markings/signs and).  Google maps, Open Street Map and the  'BikeDirect' maps still show it as having a bikelane or being 'bike friendly'. Makes me wonder if there is meant to be one there and they never put it in?

You use Open Street Map?  

What I liked about Google Maps originally was the crowd-sourcing, but it seems that has been removed.  And your experience pointed to the difficulty of getting Cycle Instead changed - though at least you have somewhere obvious to go to get it changed. I've been told that it is quite a lot of work within DPTI to get changes to Cycle Instead.

I guess Open Street Map would be easier to change.  But would that make it unreliable, for example if someone changed the designation of a route because it was temporarily unavailable, but then didn't get around to changing it back again?

I prefer Google Maps, as the routing is more reliable than the strange routing engine on Cycle Instead. Both sites use the same original dataset, but Google has a better routing engine.

I've been using the cycling layer of Google Maps when cycling to an area I don't know.  I liked the way it seem to crowd-source information to come up with networks.

The bicycling layer in Google Maps is not crowdsourced, it uses the state government's Bike Direct dataset which is the very same data used for the Cycle Instead site and also available on LocationSA

There do appear to be some individual changes here and there on Google Maps (sourced from community feedback, or maybe merging in other walking datasets?) but not big diversions from the dataset.

But it has some weird ideas, having Main North Road just above the City as a "bike friendly street".

That is 100% the state government's fault, they were the ones who included Main North Road as a cycling route in the Bike Direct dataset and provided it to Google.

Google combine the 'Main Road' and 'Secondary Road' categories of the Bike Direct dataset into 'Bicycle-friendly roads' and do the same for 'Main Road with Bicycle Lane' and 'Secondary Road with Bicycle Lane' being merged as the 'Dedicated Lanes' category. Google use the same four categories around the world, and won't be changing them just for Adelaide. 

In my opinion, the state government should discontinue the Cycle Instead map site and focus on making sure a better job is done at maintaining the BikeDirect dataset and keeping it up to date. For example, this part of East Terrace in the city still shows the dotted line along the old alignment of the road before it was realigned for the busway extension project:

That a view from from the Location SA browser?

cycleinstead.com.au has much newer data.


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