176 junctions in Greater Manchester upgraded to improve cycle safety

Initiative forms part of £650k range of measures announced today by Transport for Greater Manchester

by Simon_MacMichael   February 5, 2014  

Trixi C

Trixi mirrors are to be installed at 96 major junctions throughout Greater Manchester in a bid to improve the safety of cyclists, including improving their visibility to lorry drivers, a further 112 junctions will get advanced stop lines, and a small number will get both. A total of 176 junctions in total will be upgraded. The initiative forms part of a £650,000 package of cycle safety measures announced today.

The convex mirrors, typically placed high up on traffic lights at junctions with a left turn, were devised by Swiss citizen Ulrich Willburger, who named them after his daughter Beatrix who was seriously injured when she was hit by a cement lorry at the age of 13.

Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) says they will be deployed at a number of junctions across the area for which it is responsible, among the 176 locations identified by local authorities where improvements could be made to reduce the risk to cyclists from left-turning lorries.

Other improvements include more advanced stop lines being marked out at junctions, although many bike riders would argue that those are only of benefit if they are properly enforced to ensure that motorists do not encroach on them when traffic lights are red.

TfGM says the money for the initiative has been provided by the Department for Transport's Cycle Safety fund, administered by Sustrans and in this case the Greater Manchester Casualty Reduction Partnership.

It will be accompanied by posters reinforcing to all road users their responsibilities regarding their own safety and that of others.

TFGM Committee’s Cycling Champion, councillor Chris Paul, said: “Any road accident is one too many and any measures we can take to improve cycling safety should be welcome.

“Trixi mirrors and advance stop lines are just a few among many safety initiatives being introduced across Greater Manchester, but they will only help if everyone shares our roads in a respectful, caring way.

“Where we can, Greater Manchester is also investing in traffic free cycle routes, reduced speed zones and developing other measures at junctions to help cyclists.

“We hope that the combination of all these initiatives will not only improve road safety, but encourage more people to consider commuting by bike.”

According to TfGM, in the first 10 months of 2013 there were 472 reported road traffic incidents within Greater Manchester in which a cyclist and another vehicle was involved. It adds that 91 per cent of those incidents took place no more than 20 metres from a junction.

Eleanor Roaf, Sustrans Regional Director for the North West, said: “Fear of traffic danger is the number one reason preventing people from travelling by bike so it's fantastic to see such a comprehensive improvement to safety on Manchester's roads.

“By increasing the visibility of cyclists while also giving them priority at junctions the chance of an incident occurring between a cyclist and motorist is significantly reduced.

“The safer we make our roads, the more people are encouraged to travel by bike and that makes for healthier, cleaner and more prosperous Greater Manchester.”

Under its Velocity 2025 initiative, bolstered by £37 million of government funding between 2011 and 2015 alone, including under the Cycle City Ambition scheme, TfGM aims that 10 per cent of trips in the Greater Manchester area will be carried out by bicycle by 2025.

http://cycling.tfgm.com/velocity/

Initially, it is aiming to build a 56km network of cycle lanes and says that these will be segregated "where possible."

Last year, it unveiled proposed segregated cycle lanes as part of its Bus Priority initiative, which will see some major routes in Manchester City Centre closed to traffic other than buses, taxis and bicycles.

It is also installing 'cycle and ride' facilities at railway stations, provides free training to cyclists, and is also conducting cycle awareness training to bus drivers in partnership with Stagecoach.

30 user comments

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Just one more thing for motorists to ignore.

posted by Some Fella [746 posts]
5th February 2014 - 19:28

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no, sorry. Trixie mirrors are a cheap stopgap measure. What we want is proper Dutch style segration between cyclists and motorised trafic in BOTH time and space... Trixie mirrors require the driver to actually look at them... not good enough. Sad

posted by Paul_C [175 posts]
5th February 2014 - 19:28

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Paul_C wrote:

proper Dutch style segr[eg]ation between cyclists and motorised traf[f]ic

Really? And then watch the cycle path completely disintegrate over time while they barely fix the roads? I'd much rather take my chances on the road, TBH.

Work harder. Buy a tank.

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posted by userfriendly [285 posts]
5th February 2014 - 19:59

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I commute in Manchester and don't think there is enough money or space for dutch style segregation in most roads. However saying that, there is enough to facilitate commuter routes on the main roads in and out e.g. Stretford road and Cheetham Hill road.

That is where the money shoud be spent, ensuring that cars are not parked on roads where there are many side streets better suited.

posted by GREGJONES [112 posts]
5th February 2014 - 20:10

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Paul_C wrote:
no, sorry. Trixie mirrors are a cheap stopgap measure. What we want is proper Dutch style segration between cyclists and motorised trafic in BOTH time and space... Trixie mirrors require the driver to actually look at them... not good enough. Sad

Speak for yourself, the last thing I want is segregation. It is NOT the answer, even these mirrors are better than that.

Plus, if I took my trike into a segregation area here, I would take up the full lane. Where as in Holland, I wouldn't even take up half of it

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posted by Gkam84 [8825 posts]
5th February 2014 - 20:28

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May not be ideal but if it saves just one cyclist surely its worth it. I wish more councils did something rather than just spouting hot air.

posted by Rouboy [63 posts]
5th February 2014 - 20:46

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Its a start, better than nothing, which allows the continued harassment and abuse of cyclists on Britains road.

posted by pgwsheffield [5 posts]
5th February 2014 - 21:15

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Balls all use, how can a driver possibly use them if they have stopped past them?

Why would a driver not stop before them and before the ASL?

Because Greater Manchester Police refuse to do anything about people parking in ASLs and even their own guidelines give people a get out of jail free card as they tell people that there is no way GMP could realistically prosecute even if they wanted to.

Does anyone really think a few convex mirrors are going to change or solve anything? Are they buggery, this is just Manchester City council find ways of squandering the Velocity money.

It comes as no surprise that such wasteful fuckwittery has Sustrans' involvement in it either.

As for segregated lanes in Manchester, we do have them leading up to the Velodrome down Alan Turing Way, although it hardly takes the thinking that cracked the Enigma Code to realise that building segregated lanes that flood when it rains, in Manchester for gods sake, is on a one way ticket to a hiding.

posted by farrell [1401 posts]
5th February 2014 - 23:32

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Gkam84 wrote:
Speak for yourself, the last thing I want is segregation. It is NOT the answer, even these mirrors are better than that.

Plus, if I took my trike into a segregation area here, I would take up the full lane. Where as in Holland, I wouldn't even take up half of it

Yeah, no one wants to be stuck behind your fat axle.

Zero pot holes were filled.

farrell wrote:
As for segregated lanes in Manchester, we do have them leading up to the Velodrome down Alan Turing Way, although it hardly takes the thinking that cracked the Enigma Code to realise that building segregated lanes that flood when it rains, in Manchester for gods sake, is on a one way ticket to a hiding.

Oh, you mean the sand pit? Might be useful for Greg Rutherford to train on.


Leviathan of Riderstate

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posted by bikeboy76 [1251 posts]
5th February 2014 - 23:46

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Paul_C wrote:
What we want is proper Dutch style segration between cyclists and motorised trafic in BOTH time and space...

I don't know who 'we' are, but I'm certainly not one of them.

The mirrors appear to achieve very little. The main thing which needs to happen is that cyclists need to stop trying to go up the inside of traffic.

Alan Turing Way...haha. Sandpit? In Manchester? It's been a while since it was a sandpit. It's been resembling the Somme of late, but my favourite was last Autumn where for a week or so there was a neatly swept 1m high pile of leaves across the whole path.
And I do so love having to be cut up by people turning left at every junction, as the cycle path 'joins' the road , or having to move across three lanes of traffic when *they* say so, rather than when is safest for me. Mental bit of cycle laneage*.

*(is laneage a word? If not, it should be.)

posted by andyp [860 posts]
6th February 2014 - 10:11

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Another one against segregation.

Whilst I can see the advantage of segregation in and around town centres, there is a very real chance that drivers will pay even less attention where there is no seperation as they have got use to not having to. And that is the whole problem in this country, drivers have got use to having the roads to themselves and don't adapt to circumstance.

Also they are a death trap if whilst happily tottling along at 20mph, some prick steps out and you have no option but to bunny hop over the kerb into faster flowing tin cans. I know !

If you really want to go Dutch style. Their attitude is a lot better,
1. Cyclist have right of way.
2. If you are involved in an accident, you are at fault not the cyclist unless you can prove otherwise.

posted by Yorkshie Whippet [290 posts]
6th February 2014 - 13:18

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There are some good things in this... well, one anyway, the reduced speed zones.

As for segregation? No thanks. It's interesting how the mindset behind that is manifested in another part of the description: "Where we can, Greater Manchester is also investing in traffic free cycle routes,..."

Wut? Bicycles are not traffic?

posted by Ush [389 posts]
6th February 2014 - 15:25

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Gkam84 wrote:
Plus, if I took my trike into a segregation area here, I would take up the full lane. Where as in Holland, I wouldn't even take up half of it

For the the proposed facilities on Oxford Road they're debating whether they should be 1.75m or 2m (and the general consensus is 2m, especially from cyclists). How wide is your trike?

Of course many of the existing segregated facilities in Manchester are totally substandard - narrow, poorly maintained (Alan Turing Way), discontinuous (throwing cyclists back into the road just as the road gets busy). But the "we have some cr@p cycle facilities now so we don't want any dedicated cycle facilities at all" argument is flawed. On fast or busy routes in the Netherlands the policy is ALWAYS to segregate cycle facilities, and to make them good quality, since it's more economically sensible to do so - cyclists weigh a lot less and don't ruin tarmac like buses.

Also, unlike many of the readers here, a lot of people - particularly kids and many older people - will never be persuaded to ride a bike if it means sharing a lane with buses and lorries, etc. So if your attitude is "I'm alright Jack, keep your segregated cycleways" then I'm sure that's great, but maybe it's not all about you?

Personally I'd rather keep the pressure on to make sure any facilities we can get are of a high enough quality to make them worthwhile.

posted by pmanc [115 posts]
6th February 2014 - 17:48

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pmanc wrote:
unlike many of the readers here, a lot of people - particularly kids and many older people - will never be persuaded to ride a bike if it means sharing a lane with buses and lorries, etc. So if your attitude is "I'm alright Jack, keep your segregated cycleways" then I'm sure that's great, but maybe it's not all about you?

An unecessarily personalized approach to the subject, unlikely to convince anyone.

If your proposal is to shove in another substandard lane with spits said children and old people out into the maw of the beast... having trained them and the motor vehicle operators to NOT know how to ride except in segregated lanes... well, it ain't going to be pretty. It's likely that like any of us they'll look at it and decide "no thanks".

On the other hand if all cyclists concentrated their attention on reducing, slowing and banning motorized vehicle use, then maybe we could all use the roads.

posted by Ush [389 posts]
6th February 2014 - 17:57

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'But the "we have some cr@p cycle facilities now so we don't want any dedicated cycle facilities at all" argument is flawed'

It's not a 'we have some cr@p cycle facilities now so we don't want any dedicated cycle facilities at all' argument. It's just a 'we don't want segregated lanes' argument.

posted by andyp [860 posts]
6th February 2014 - 23:02

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If all motorists drove responsibly, children and the elderly could easily use the roads, as is their right as human beings (or as tax payers, if you're so inclined).

Since it is actually against the law to drive irresponsibly, I don't get why we continue letting people get away with it. So here's an idea:

Take all that money (what little money it is) that's currently spent on badly thought out and even more badly implemented "safe cycling" infrastructure and give it to the police instead - to increase their numbers and get really really tough on law breaking operators of fast heavy machinery (aka. cars, lorries, buses).

Accompany that with changes in legislation: harsher penalties, less tolerance, strict liability.

Also, why is the 3 feet minimum passing distance not a law yet? How hard can that be? That alone would drastically cut down on the number of cyclists knocked off their bikes and killed / seriously injured.

Work harder. Buy a tank.

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posted by userfriendly [285 posts]
6th February 2014 - 23:22

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'Also, why is the 3 feet minimum passing distance not a law yet?'

because
a) it's not enough distance
and
b) it's in imperial units and thus should be shunned.

posted by andyp [860 posts]
7th February 2014 - 9:21

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Ush wrote:
An unecessarily personalized approach to the subject, unlikely to convince anyone.
Not sure what you mean is personalized, my comment or the idea of car-free cycle routes? imo there's nothing personalized about it; everyone can benefit from decent dedicated space for cycling. http://aseasyasridingabike.wordpress.com/2014/02/07/gridlock/

Ush wrote:

If your proposal is to shove in another substandard lane with spits said children and old people out into the maw of the beast.
My proposal? My whole comment argued against more cr@p cycle lanes! The basic Dutch premise is: Quiet residential roads have 20mph limits and are designed for access rather than through routes. Bigger roads which are, by nature, fast or busy get consistent decent quality segregation. Of course we can't build it all at once but without it cycling will *always* be for an out-group minority.

Ush wrote:

On the other hand if all cyclists concentrated their attention on reducing, slowing and banning motorized vehicle use, then maybe we could all use the roads.
A road where motorized vehicle use is banned? That's what a good quality segregated cycleway is! I completely agree that reducing, slowing and banning are an integral part of this. Basically prioritizing cycling more highly compared to driving.

andyp wrote:
It's not a 'we have some cr@p cycle facilities now so we don't want any dedicated cycle facilities at all' argument. It's just a 'we don't want segregated lanes' argument.
If it's not a segregated cycleway then it's not dedicated to cycling. It's just a road, and motor vehicle traffic flow will inevitably end up taking priority.

Maybe everyone's too jaded by the rubbish we have at the moment. Why can't we work towards this kind of stuff? http://vimeo.com/76207227

posted by pmanc [115 posts]
7th February 2014 - 11:14

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'If it's not a segregated cycleway then it's not dedicated to cycling. It's just a road, and motor vehicle traffic flow will inevitably end up taking priority.'

which is fine.

posted by andyp [860 posts]
7th February 2014 - 11:31

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andyp wrote:

'Also, why is the 3 feet minimum passing distance not a law yet?'

because
a) it's not enough distance
and
b) it's in imperial units and thus should be shunned.

I'll happily concede the 2nd point. Having moved from Germany to Scotland a few years ago, and having got back into cycling only last year, I'm struggling a bit to unlearn something just learned rather recently. One metre it is then. Fine. Tongue Big Grin Be that way.

I did say 'minimum', though. Most of the cars that pass me during my daily commute do give me at least 1 metre of room, but every now and then I'm passed by people who don't seem to be concerned in the slightest to pass me within literally 10 inches of my handlebars. Sorry, 25 centimetres.

I'm fine with 1 metre. Anything less and I get a tad uneasy about it, especially when they're doing 50 mph or more. 80. I mean 80 kmh.

Work harder. Buy a tank.

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posted by userfriendly [285 posts]
7th February 2014 - 13:36

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Two metres, I think you'll find... Wink

posted by andyp [860 posts]
7th February 2014 - 13:43

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andyp wrote:
...motor vehicle traffic flow will inevitably end up taking priority.'
which is fine.

Again. It's "fine" for you (lucky you) and some of the other members of that tiny minority of people who regularly cycle to get from a to b. I'm also in that minority but personally I would prefer not to be treated like a second-class-citizen, or like an afterthought, just because I chose a mode of transport which actually causes fewer social ills. It's especially not fine for me when I'm trying to get my kids around town.

Plus I would very much like to see everyday cycling become viable for more people so that minority could grow.

posted by pmanc [115 posts]
7th February 2014 - 14:02

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pmanc wrote:
My proposal? My whole comment argued against more cr@p cycle lanes! The basic Dutch premise is: Quiet residential roads have 20mph limits and are designed for access rather than through routes. Bigger roads which are, by nature, fast or busy get consistent decent quality segregation.

Do you honestly believe that when they say "Initially, it is aiming to build a 56km network of cycle lanes and says that these will be segregated "where possible" that they are talking about _anything_ remotely like Dutch infrastructure?

I suspect and would be willing to put good money on what they produce being the normal UK/USA style crap.

You can propose Dutch infrastructure all you want, but under the emotional guise of "think of the children" you are ignoring the reality that what is going to be built is not a pleasant, non-dangerous, child-friendly infrastructure.

Instead of ambitiously focusing on the reduction and removal of most motorized traffic from city centers you have chosen to harp on the dangers of cycling and to promote infrastructure which causes damage to those of us that _do_ cycle.

I can agree that it would be pleasant to have Dutch style infrastructure. I don't agree that it's possible to get from here to there by naively invoking the children and welcoming every crap path.

posted by Ush [389 posts]
7th February 2014 - 14:42

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Also it would be impossible to enforce by the police because retrospectively measuring the distance with a ruler would be a challenge in itself...?

posted by Sswindells [14 posts]
7th February 2014 - 15:06

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'Again. It's "fine" for you (lucky you) and some of the other members of that tiny minority of people who regularly cycle to get from a to b. I'm also in that minority but personally I would prefer not to be treated like a second-class-citizen, or like an afterthought, just because I chose a mode of transport which actually causes fewer social ills. It's especially not fine for me when I'm trying to get my kids around town.
'

I absolutely agree with this bit. There's no reason at all though why the answer should be segregation.

posted by andyp [860 posts]
8th February 2014 - 12:15

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Sswindells wrote:

Also it would be impossible to enforce by the police because retrospectively measuring the distance with a ruler would be a challenge in itself...?

Hmm. A tiny optical transceiver, taking a distance measurement, fitted to the right-hand seat stay and activated by movement of the bike, with an equally tiny forward-facing camera that takes a picture of the licence plate of a too closely passing car ... cheaply mass-produced and reasonably tamper proof, sold by police / road safety charity etc.

Silly idea maybe. Could use some refining. Would love to have it.

Of course, a much simpler idea would be CCTV cams watching the traffic at certain pinch points where drivers tend to overtake closely. Nerd But that would be boring. I like my hypothetical gadget better.

Work harder. Buy a tank.

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posted by userfriendly [285 posts]
10th February 2014 - 0:58

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andyp wrote:
There's no reason at all though why the answer should be segregation.

except of course that it's proven to be the answer elsewhere? or are we asking a different question?

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7318 posts]
10th February 2014 - 9:04

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Nicely put Dave.

Yes, Segregation can work.

But, there are many ways in which we can be not 'treated like a second-class-citizen, or like an afterthought, just because I chose a mode of transport which actually causes fewer social ills'...than removing us from the roads.

posted by andyp [860 posts]
10th February 2014 - 10:38

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I see 176 junctions has become 96 junctions. I presume this is Manchester City Councils fault, not the infallible road.cc.


Leviathan of Riderstate

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posted by bikeboy76 [1251 posts]
10th February 2014 - 23:10

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bikeboy76 wrote:
I see 176 junctions has become 96 junctions. I presume this is Manchester City Councils fault, not the infallible road.cc.

ahem Big Grin

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7318 posts]
10th February 2014 - 23:57

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