Concerned about the high rate of cycling casualties in the city

Portsmouth City Council has revealed a series of plans to create more space for cyclists reports Portsmouth News.

The plans were revealed at a meeting of Portsmouth Cycle Forum by road safety officer, Oliver Willcocks. They include a cycleway along the northern side of Goldsmith Avenue nearest the railway station as well as removal of parking; and a shared pathway and cycleway on the western side of Milton Road, from Velder Avenue to St Mary’s Hospital. About the latter, Willcocks said: “This is what the school wants and people have been asking for.”

He also revealed plans for a cycleway along Havant Road at Cosham, saying: “We are consulting on making space for cyclists. And we’re consulting on removing parking along the northern side of the road for pretty much the whole length from the main Cosham roundabout out to the city boundary to the east.”

While adding that parking would still be allowed near the main shopping area, he said that the design was ‘still very much an open book’.

The council is keen to improve Portsmouth for cyclists after it was revealed that the city has the highest rate of cycling casualties outside London with 183 collisions last year.

In September, a number of cycle accident ‘hot spots’ were identified and Portsmouth Cycle Forum was asked to come up with ideas with a number of suggestions put forward at the recent meeting. However, Forum chairman, Jon Spencer, believes that major changes to road layout will be required.

“The worst places for cyclists are all found on 30mph roads. In the residential streets, we have got a 20mph speed limit. That is not where these accidents are happening.

“The question is what do we do? In the short term, the council needs to go to these hot spots to see what we can do. Longer term, we probably need more substantial engineering to be done to redesign the roads and address the problem.”

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