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Mayor pledges to cut cycle deaths by 40% by 2020 with new insfrastructure and bus and HGV technology

Innovative trials and new design standards will improve cycle safety and save dozens of lives across London, according to Transport for London (TfL).

The organisation has completely revised its Cycle Safety Action Plan to include new technology to improve the safety of HGVs and buses, which which is promised to include making bicycles more easily visible and vehicle braking systems more responsive - and a plan to double the number of adult cyclists taking advanced skills training.

TfL has also outlines multimillion pound infrastructure redesigns, making use of public consultation and best practice.

The fully updated London Cycling Design Standards, have been published for public consultation today.

TfL states as one of its top priorities to reduce by 40 per cent the number of people killed or seriously injured on London's roads by 2020.

Last year 132 people, included 65 pedestrians and 14 cyclists, were killed on London roads.
The Mayor, Boris Johnson, and TfL pledged action to prioritise the safety of the most vulnerable road users:  pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists, including 32 new proposals   on top of the last Cycle Safety Action Plan published in 2010, including:

 

  • Helping to reduce HGV traffic during peak hours by trialling innovative quiet vehicle technology to help expand off-peak delivery. This would remove conflicts between cyclists and lorries during morning and evening rush hours.
  • Working with manufacturers to develop better designs for side guards in order to further prevent fatal and serious injuries, as well as delivering the Safer Lorry Scheme this year.
  • Carrying out trials of detection equipment on London buses to help drivers be more aware of pedestrians and cyclists near their vehicles, which if successful could be rolled out across London's bus fleet. TfL will also look to trial Intelligent Speed Adaptation (ISA), which would monitor and potentially restrict the top speed of buses.
  • Working with the automotive industry to explore how improvements to car design could further protect cyclists, such as Autonomous Emergency Braking Systems, which could help make vehicles stop more quickly, and the introduction of a EuroNCAP safety rating system for cyclists so that car buyers can assess the cycle safety credentials of any new vehicle.
  • Working with cycle manufacturers to improve how easy it is to see bicycles by building lights or retro-reflective equipment into bike frames.
  • Continuing to develop and deliver the Safer Urban Driving CPC course to help put more than 10,000 freight and fleet drivers a year through essential safety training.
  • Doubling the number of adult cyclists receiving advanced skills training by creating a dedicated London Virtual Skills Hub. This will allow online booking of cycle training and advanced safety skills across London to attract more commuter cyclists to take up training.

Andrew Gilligan, The Mayor’s Cycling Commissioner said: “The Mayor is spending hundreds of millions of pounds on better bike infrastructure to cater for the vast growth in cycling on London’s roads.

“This document aims to see that those projects are delivered to higher standards. We do not expect perfection, and the best must not be the enemy of the good. But as the Mayor has said, everything we pay for must be done at least adequately, or not at all.

“At the same time, we know that TfL and City Hall have no monopoly of wisdom. The standards will be consulted on before they become final by the end of the year. We welcome ideas, and we know that many of the ideas which people liked most in the cycle vision were pioneered in the London boroughs.”

In February 2014 the Mayor and TfL published six safety commitments, being:

1.    To lead the way in achieving a 40 per cent reduction in the number of people killed or seriously injured on the capital’s roads by 2020 - with a longer term ambition of freeing London’s roads from death and serious injury;

2.    To prioritise safety of the most vulnerable groups - pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists - which make up 80 per cent of serious and fatal collisions;

3.    To provide substantial funding for road safety, invested in the most effective and innovative schemes;

4.    To increase efforts with the police and enforcement agencies in tackling illegal, dangerous and careless road user behaviour that puts people at risk;

5.    To campaign for changes in national and EU law to make roads, vehicles and drivers safer;

6.    To work in partnership with boroughs and London’s road safety stakeholders to spread best practice and share data and information.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

51 comments

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Gromski [46 posts] 2 years ago
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Related question - why aren't London buses speed limited?

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matthewn5 [776 posts] 2 years ago
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So no commitment to segregated cycling? Just more investment in pie-in-the-sky vehicle modifications that will take years to adopt?

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A V Lowe [575 posts] 2 years ago
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Gromski - Epsom Coaches tweaked the Euro 4 engine management system to limit the top speed of their buses used entirely within 30mph limit to 29.7mph (ie 1% tolerance)

As a result they found this delivered a reduction in minor damage crashes, a reduction in driver stress, and a reduction in fuel consumption.

The main big groups already use GreenFleet or similar packages to give a traffic light score on a driver's performance, with gentle braking & acceleration scoring high, and drivers getting rewarded for 'green light' rating and retrained for red light performance.

Moving on to trucks, the big problem is construction traffic, as few large logistics vehicles are operated inefficiently crawling round the city streets. The position is reflected in the crash figures, with tippers, skip trucks and concrete jiggers dominating the fatal crash reports. These cannot be stopped magically as they are removing or delivering from confined city sites where there is nowhere to stockpile material. What is daft though is to use off-road vehicles with ridiculous ground clearances to run on the road and on sites where H&S legislation now ensures that a firm and flat access route for trucks is provided. It is only the excuse that these trucks might be use in a quarry or ploughed field, or sold on for such work that we have this specification used on our city streets. TfL could change that by setting up a scale of a charges for unsuitable trucks operating within inner London

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Big Softy [23 posts] 2 years ago
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If Boris were serious he would sack Peter Hendy.
400 Killed or Seriously Injured a year by London buses, and that useless bastard gets a knighthood.

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darrenleroy [213 posts] 2 years ago
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Gilligan accepts the proposals aren't perfect and acknowledges improvements can always be made. This is a sensible approach. We aren't going to get segregated roads for cyclists in London because the roads are usually too damn narrow so get over it.

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darrenleroy [213 posts] 2 years ago
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A 20mph speed limit on all London roads that aren't dual carriageways and a strict liability law for motorists would further cut deaths and injury. Government motorist awareness adverts on TV and radio and static media would help as well.

A private hire cabby was behind a car on a narrow street that was giving way to me as I cycled the other way. The cabby pulled out around the car and headed straight for me. I stood my ground and flagged him down.
'You just overtook that car that was giving way to me.'
He looked surprised. (I assume he thought the car had just stopped because no driver would pull out to overtake another driver patiently giving way.)
'You realise cars have to give way to bikes?'
'What, bikes? No, only other cars.'
He wanted to dismiss me but he was carrying passengers so held his tongue.
'No mate. You have to give way to other road users, whether they be bikes, lorries, horses, pedestrians or unicyclists.'
Off he drove, shaking his head.

I might add he was from somewhere in the middle east by the look of him and I'm certain from my experience drivers from developing countries have even less regard for cyclists than our own homegrown black cab drivers, if such a thing were possible. It's ignorance. Pure ignorance.

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drfabulous0 [409 posts] 2 years ago
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Quote:

Working with cycle manufacturers to improve how easy it is to see bicycles by building lights or retro-reflective equipment into bike frames.

Good luck with that, I'm sure it will catch on.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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drmatthewhardy wrote:

So no commitment to segregated cycling? Just more investment in pie-in-the-sky vehicle modifications that will take years to adopt?

Segregated cycling is NOT a solution. That is the last thing most cyclists want to see.

A solution has to work for ALL not the just ones who want a certain thing, anything segregated in this country at the moment, I cannot take my bike on because it would block both lanes, also I believe you cannot take a mobility scooter onto a segregated lane at the moment, but you can take them onto a cycle lane.

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userfriendly [562 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

Segregated cycling is NOT a solution. That is the last thing most cyclists want to see.

To add to that, it's not just that it wouldn't work in most built up places. Even if it did work, it would be counter-productive for a large portion of cyclists simply because it would make the roads a more dangerous place to be in, as it would reinforce the misguided notion of a lot of drivers that cyclists don't belong on the road.

The general argument for segregated cycling is that it's the preferred option for inexperienced cyclists, children, and old folks. But their journeys are short, irregular, and thus already catered for - not perfectly, I admit, but sufficiently - by a large number of shared use paths and the like. Even pavements - and don't try to tell me a cop would stop a 6 year old on a BMX bike and fine them for pavement riding ...

Nothing wrong with cycling like that, in fact it's great to get started and/or keeping at it into old age - but please don't treat it as the solution to a problem those people don't really have, a problem that concerns a different kind of cyclist, those that use their bikes regularly and a lot, for general transport, commuting and sport - those people want the roads to be safer. And not be told to fuck off because "there's a perfectly good cycle path right there, get out of my way!"

The problem is not the bikes, they don't need to be 'segregated'. It's careless (mildly put) drivers, they do. They're what the solution, whatever it is, needs to take aim at. They're the ones making the roads unsafe. But since the vast majority of the voting populace drive and don't cycle this is a seemingly hopeless uphill battle - and will continue to be one until there is a sea change in attitude towards the motor car and, more generally, towards your fellow human being. I.e., probably never.

Until then, all we're likely to see is politicians pretending to do something by promising "better infrastructure" and other such 'grand ideas' ... while what they invest in those half-hearted schemes is less than 1% of what they keep investing in making the problem worse, i.e. more motorways, more cars, more means for lazy and ignorant people to remain lazy and ignorant.

It's a fucked up society. And most of us deserve it.  37

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CanAmSteve [252 posts] 2 years ago
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I'd love to see a central London blanket 20mph limit. The average speed is 11mph or so anyway, so it would only affect a few idiots - like the ones in expensive cars that just have to put their foot down for two seconds on Park Lane.

There's nothing wrong with segregated cycling lanes - look at countries that have high cycle usage - they all offer segregated zones but also maintain cycle infrastructure on main roads. It's not one or the other - it's both.

I note in many Euro cities that concrete, for example, is stored on building sites in "silos" to be drawn down as needed. These silos allow concrete mix to be delivered off-hours (or at least less frequently) and stored until needed. I see this only rarely in London.

If London buses have some sort of driver monitoring, the drivers either don't care or have managed to spoof it. The standard of driving from London bus drivers is shocking. They run red lights and swerve and brake violently for no good reason. I would say the good drivers are notable and in the minority. But then, it's a crap job and poorly paid for stressful work. Mystifies me why a Tube driver makes double a bus driver.

OMG! The woman cyclist on the consultation doc cover is not wearing a helmet! Report them to the ASA!

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Yorkshie Whippet [530 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:
drmatthewhardy wrote:

So no commitment to segregated cycling? Just more investment in pie-in-the-sky vehicle modifications that will take years to adopt?

Segregated cycling is NOT a solution. That is the last thing most cyclists want to see.

A solution has to work for ALL not the just ones who want a certain thing, anything segregated in this country at the moment, I cannot take my bike on because it would block both lanes, also I believe you cannot take a mobility scooter onto a segregated lane at the moment, but you can take them onto a cycle lane.

+1 segregation is not the answer except on fast roads such dual carriage ways . Elsewhere there is no such thing as a dangerous road, it's the disrespectful, self centred, impatient organic thing that's dangerous. Imagine the most "dangerous" section of road you know and remove all traffic. How bad is it now?

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pique [20 posts] 2 years ago
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why aren't bus drivers getting driver CPC courses? they need better cycle awareness too

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pmanc [203 posts] 2 years ago
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It never ceases to amaze me how those against "segregation" can conveniently ignore the fact that nations with good quality protected space for cycling have (by a very long way) the most cyclists across all demographics.

Just because *you* are comfortable weaving through buses, and most cycle facilities in the UK are crap, that doesn't entitle you to be blind to the experience of other countries. We've had this debate. We've tried persuading everyone to "just be nice and get along" and it isn't working.

And about those narrow roads in London...
http://aseasyasridingabike.wordpress.com/2012/07/10/the-physical-constra...

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gazza_d [460 posts] 2 years ago
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Segregation IS the answer to get many more people to ride bikes.

It's not about the few % that already cycle, but about making cycling feel safer for the majority that don't cycle yet.

Even at 20 mph or lower many people are frightened by sharing the road with vehicles, and this will help them.

Just saying they need to MTFU and that drivers need to behave nicer is rubbish because that is what the UK has been doing for the last 50 years, and we are now in a position where the roads are only for the fast, fit and brave.

We are not talking about just chucking a sign on a lamppost allowing cyclists to ride on the path, we are talking about proper wide, well surfaced space either dedicated to cyclists or shared with pedestrians where that volume is low. cycle paths in the Netherlands are good enough for chain gangs to use in preference to roads, and that should be the aim here too.

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hexhome [26 posts] 2 years ago
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London buses are speed limited, to 100k.

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hexhome [26 posts] 2 years ago
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pique wrote:

why aren't bus drivers getting driver CPC courses? they need better cycle awareness too

They are, ahead of HGV drivers but Cycle Awareness is only an optional module. I have been campaigning for it to be compulsory. Please write to your MP and add your voice.

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HarrogateSpa [358 posts] 2 years ago
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Quote:

Segregated cycling is NOT a solution. That is the last thing most cyclists want to see.

Have a look at this video of cyclists in Utrecht http://youtu.be/qy7XtYPLZuA and tell me that segregation isn't the answer. You'll see a mobility scooter, small children on bikes, an older lady with plants she's bought at the flower market, and cargo bikes - all on good quality separate cycle paths.

The way we're going in the UK, when are we ever, ever going to get such a mix of people cycling, in such numbers?

The fact is that cycling in traffic puts off 60+ per cent of people. If you really want more utility cycling, this is the only way.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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HarrogateSpa wrote:
Quote:

Segregated cycling is NOT a solution. That is the last thing most cyclists want to see.

Have a look at this video of cyclists in Utrecht http://youtu.be/qy7XtYPLZuA and tell me that segregation isn't the answer. You'll see a mobility scooter, small children on bikes, an older lady with plants she's bought at the flower market, and cargo bikes - all on good quality separate cycle paths.

The way we're going in the UK, when are we ever, ever going to get such a mix of people cycling, in such numbers?

The fact is that cycling in traffic puts off 60+ per cent of people. If you really want more utility cycling, this is the only way.

None of that is on a road.....they are all cycle paths....

So how do you think you are going to fit that into central London or any other city.....It is NOT the answer

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bikebot [1924 posts] 2 years ago
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drmatthewhardy wrote:

So no commitment to segregated cycling? Just more investment in pie-in-the-sky vehicle modifications that will take years to adopt?

Download it, and read it. I'm only on chapter one, and there's lots in there about segregated design.

For anyone that still thinks it's a bad idea, take a look a Farringdon (Blackfriars through to Clerkenwell) as it is today, and the plans to transform it next year. I don't cycle in the center of London that often, but that's one of the routes I use. At peak hours, cyclists are the majority of users on that road, and yet it's bloody dangerous!

I'm hugely looking forward to that change, along with some of the others, just get on with it!

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Paul J [884 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam: Dutch city and town centres have road plans as old and narrow as London. London is not exceptionally narrow. Indeed, I'd say it has quite spacious streets compared to many dutch towns and cities.

You're peddlng a myth.

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userfriendly [562 posts] 2 years ago
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pmanc wrote:

It never ceases to amaze me how those against "segregation" can conveniently ignore the fact that nations with good quality protected space for cycling have (by a very long way) the most cyclists across all demographics.

Like you 'conveniently ignore' the fact that more segregation means more people thinking we have no right to be on the road? If you think drivers' attitudes are bad now ... what do you imagine them to be like then?

And you have it the wrong way round: the reason the Netherlands have a high percentage of people who cycle is not that a lot of money has been invested in segregated infrastructure there - the reason that a lot of money has been invested in segregated infrastructure there is that the Netherlands have a high percentage of people who cycle.

You can't magically turn the UK into the Netherlands by throwing money at it. Like any other change in any society, it always starts with the people, not the budget. There won't be any change in spending just for the sake of it. No politician is going to do that. The people have to demand it, like they did in the Netherlands. First, more (a lot more) people have to reconsider their relationship with their unsustainable and dangerous, petrol guzzling, private mobile castles. Then, and only then, there will a large enough base to effect a change in spending for the segregated infrastructure that you want.

If it was the other way round, you would find the drivers' attitudes towards cyclists on the road in the Netherlands to be just as bad if not worse than they are here. The opposite is the case. And that is why.

Until then, we all need to lobby for what little budget we are given to be invested in things that serve everyone, not just one part of us. And that is not more segregation while the cause of the problem is being left untouched and even encouraged!

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bikebot [1924 posts] 2 years ago
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As it reports in the draft plan, in central London cycling is 24% of peak traffic, and 16% across the day.

You don't need to talk about London becoming a cycling city as if it's some distant hypothetical future. The demand is already established, the infrastructure is lagging behind.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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As I keep saying, if you think segregation is the answer, it HAS to work for all.

My trike comes in at 45 inches wide....so 1.1m, The recommended width for most cycle lanes is only 1.5m-2m

That means I take up more than half of the lane. Almost all segregation is 2 way, so it doesn't leave much room for bikes to come past me going in either direction, even if I place myself as far in as I can. Going round a corner, no-one would be able to pass at all.

Segregation works for the few, not the many and therefore is not a solution in the long term for cycling. It also tends to only be placed on certain routes, which I'm not against, have that on routes where kids can go cycling safely, but that just enforces the mindset that cycles cannot or should not be on the road mixing with motors.

THAT is what we need to be sorting out, not diddy blue lanes and sh*t infrastructure that does nothing to benefit anyone.

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bikebot [1924 posts] 2 years ago
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Segregation works for the few... because you can't ride your 45 inch wide trike on them?

Erm... OK!

I suggest you start your own cycling charity, as everyone else is campaigning in a different direction. Personally I think your theory is absolute bobbins, I haven't seen any evidence to suggest that segregated routes lessen a cyclists perceived right to use the road where they aren't available.

If anything, the evidence is that providing safe routes increases the modal share of cycling, and thus the general acceptance of.

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zanf [838 posts] 2 years ago
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A V Lowe wrote:

These cannot be stopped magically as they are removing or delivering from confined city sites where there is nowhere to stockpile material.

I was at the documentary about Jan Gehl (with the q&A afterwards) and one of the points that was made is that on one street alone at Bond Street, there are 35 different waste contractors that collect refuge from the shops. That is unnecessary duplication, a waste of resources and spurious cause of congestion.

As for the skip/tipper trucks that are related to construction, there is a trend to use contractor vehicles that engage self employed drivers on piece work so safety is a massive hindrance to making a profit. Reverse that culture (or introduce huge financial penalties on the vehicle owners) and then you might start getting somewhere.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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bikebot wrote:

Segregation works for the few... because you can't ride your 45 inch wide trike on them?

Erm... OK!

I suggest you start your own cycling charity, as everyone else is campaigning in a different direction. Personally I think your theory is absolute bobbins, I haven't seen any evidence to suggest that segregated routes lessen a cyclists perceived right to use the road where they aren't available.

If anything, the evidence is that providing safe routes increases the modal share of cycling, and thus the general acceptance of.

I am using myself as an example. Not a lone voice against it.

So by your thinking, disabled cyclists or any cyclist for that matter, that ride anything other than a "normal" bike should be left out.....

I'd love to see this "evidence" that segregation increases acceptance when using the road where there is no segregation.....I don't think that is true at all. You would get a rise in "use the pavement" arguments

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bikebot [1924 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

I am using myself as an example. Not a lone voice against it.

So by your thinking, disabled cyclists or any cyclist for that matter, that ride anything other than a "normal" bike should be left out.....

I'd love to see this "evidence" that segregation increases acceptance when using the road where there is no segregation.....I don't think that is true at all. You would get a rise in "use the pavement" arguments

I'd love to see the evidence for any of your argument. You're the one making the case against the model used by the most successful cycling countries in Europe.

You should have a look at the designs for Farringdon and the Embankment, they will handle disabled cyclists absolutely fine. And in much greater safety than if they were riding amongst tipper trucks along those busy sections of road.

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gazza_d [460 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

As I keep saying, if you think segregation is the answer, it HAS to work for all.

My trike comes in at 45 inches wide....so 1.1m, The recommended width for most cycle lanes is only 1.5m-2m

That means I take up more than half of the lane. Almost all segregation is 2 way, so it doesn't leave much room for bikes to come past me going in either direction, even if I place myself as far in as I can. Going round a corner, no-one would be able to pass at all.

Segregation works for the few, not the many and therefore is not a solution in the long term for cycling. It also tends to only be placed on certain routes, which I'm not against, have that on routes where kids can go cycling safely, but that just enforces the mindset that cycles cannot or should not be on the road mixing with motors.

THAT is what we need to be sorting out, not diddy blue lanes and sh*t infrastructure that does nothing to benefit anyone.

Most of the new infra is 3 metres wide. Lots (about 75%) of my commute (alongside the Nissan plant in Sunderland for example) is shared path and at least 3m wide.

It's like cycling along a road frankly, and being honest is smoother than the road as most around there seem to be surfaced from railway ballast with just enough tarmac to hold it together.

Depending on my route I do several miles on NCN71, which is the C2C, and that again is mostly 3m wide as well. I participated in a infrastructure ride organised by a council to demo new paths, and they were designed and built to be wide and well graded enough to allow people in mobility scooters to get around easily.

There is some rubbish, but it is largely old "legacy" stuff which does need updating.

It's not separated infra that is the issue, but the poor design standards (where used) for some of the stuff put in previously. Pressure needs to be applied to ensure that best practices are adhered too, and that new stuff is fit for purpose for all use.

The new TFL plan is a very good step in that direction, as are the other guides.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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gazza_d that sounds like a perfect solution, but for many areas, setting aside 3m of space is not feasible, for instance, in a city centre, unless you make every road a 1 way route, which I wouldn't mind and take a lane away, solely for use as a path.

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bikebot [1924 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

gazza_d that sounds like a perfect solution, but for many areas, setting aside 3m of space is not feasible, for instance, in a city centre, unless you make every road a 1 way route, which I wouldn't mind and take a lane away, solely for use as a path.

One more time.

http://aseasyasridingabike.wordpress.com/2012/07/10/the-physical-constra...

And the statistic again from the report, cyclists are 24% of roads users at peak hours, 16% across the day in central London. Taking back road space (lanes and parking space) is exactly what other countries did, and London has tentatively begun to do to reflect the modal share.

And for anyone that thinks that is politically impossible because of the motoring lobby, I had an interesting chat recently with a councillor after the local elections (I won't mention his name or party). He told me that in Hackney anyone with an anti-cycling policy would now be unelectable, regardless of party.

In parts of London, mainstream cycling isn't some hypothetical future, it's present day reality and there's political pressure to deliver on promises made.

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