Jenny Jones says cycling basics still not being dealt with in London

Green Party mayoral candidate highlights the everyday issues that continue to plague capital's cyclists

by GreenJennyJones   February 28, 2012  

Jenny Jones.jpg

London Assembly Member Jenny Jones, the Green Party's candidate in the forthcoming Mayoral Elections, says that basic issues that would make life easier for the capital's cyclists are still not being dealt with, as outlined in this blog post from her. She has also published a report, Cycling In London, based on research compiled through speaking with cyclists in all of London's boroughs over the past year, which you can download at the end of her post. Over to Jenny:

Cycling in London has definitely progressed in the last decade and has continued to expand through the Cycle Hire and Cycle Superhighways.

But there are a lot of basic problems that need to be tackled. By basic, I really do mean the things that cyclists should not have to worry about – signage, parking, maintenance, uninterrupted cycle routes and safety.

I have visited every London borough and been out riding with many local cyclists. It is clear from what they have shown me of their areas that cyclists are facing these difficulties everyday, across the whole of the capital. The report I have published on cycling in London identifies these problems and sets out several recommendations that I believe would make cycling a much better experience.

High priority for cyclists when designing road layouts is one of these recommendations. It’s frustrating for cyclists who have to dismount and mount a number of times or have to negotiate one way streets or cross multiple lanes, because they have just not been considered in the road design. Cyclists are key road users, just like motorists, and this needs to be emphasised.

I recommend secure cycle parking, including card-access facilities, are installed in places where theft from bike stands is prevalent and at every railway station and in all town centres. I’ve seen people cycling to the station in the morning to get the train to work, only to find all the cycle parking spaces are full. It’s highly inconvenient and means that the person has to park their bike elsewhere, often where it is less safe.

Litter, glass and debris does not sound like a major problem, but it can be particularly annoying for cyclists. It only takes one piece of glass to burst a tyre and that person may not bother to get a new one, so that’s another cyclist lost. I recommend that cycle routes are routinely maintained and all boroughs should provide a service for cyclists to report these basic maintenance problems.

Even these three simple recommendations would massively improve cycling. There are eight more in the report that I believe tackle the problems. 

I’m certainly not detracting away from the big schemes. They have gone a long way to bring cycling to many more Londoners. But it is the cycling basics that really need to be dealt with in order to improve cycling across London and bring the pleasure of cycling to thousands more.

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Jenny Jones Cycling in London Report.pdf685.31 KB

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Time for the general speed limit to be 20MPH on all secondary , urban routes . Those in a hurry can use the " A " roads ! Suburban streets should not be used as " Rat runs " endangering Children , Cyclists and Pedestrians .

With the lower speeds , there will be less need for Cycle infrastructure in the short term BUT this is only a stop gap measure that allows time for a properly planned dedicated Cycle Safe Ntwork to be built ! Currently these " Super Cycle Routes " are reported as being less than satisfactory ! Each cyclist has a personal opinion , so it is only those that take the time to comment , that YOU and I hear from .

Setting up a General Info service that deals with ALL Complaints in a timely fashion will avoid the " It's not our area for responsibility " when you phone the wrong " local Authority " in the effort to Advise/complain about road hazards ! When in London , i wouldn't know who to advise of dangerous potholes or garbage/litter blocking the cycling route , so would those living locally ?

Painting in yellow ALL impediments such as manholes ,potholes and drains will allow Cyclists time to adjust their line of travel and be an obvious reason for following motorists ! Too often these problems have been ignored following reports and thus Death or Injury can result ! When there is neglect by the Local Authority that leads to death , then Corporate Manslaughter charges should result !

" Accidents " should not be the word used for , negligence , cost cutting , laziness and inattention !

Expect in the next years to see ALL the excuses trotted out as the situation deteriorates for Cyclists ! Elected representatives MUST be held PERSONALLY responsible and brought to account when they fail to act to improve the services in their area !

Skippy(advocate for "Disabled / Para Sport")@skippydetour. blogging as skippi-cyclist.blogspot & Parrabuddy.blogspot currently on the road with ProTour Grand Tour Events .

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posted by skippy [383 posts]
1st March 2012 - 8:25

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