A new Cycle Superhighway connecting North East London to the centre of the capital has been described as ‘shoddy’ and overly circuitous.
Transport for London (TfL) is currently consulting on the new 7 mile route known as CS1, which is to run between Tottenham and Liverpool Street, through Stoke Newington and Dalston.
Work is due to begin on the route later this year.
Jenny Jones, Green Party assembly member, has suggested that a superhighway should be a fast and direct route along major roads with segregation, and that CS1 should in fact be rebranded as a Quietway.
Mark Treasure, Chair of the Cycling Embassy of Great Britain, told the Hackney Citizen that “shoddy backstreet routes” was “desperately poor.”
He said: “Of course there is the issue of whether this route even deserves to be called a ‘Superhighway’ at all.”
“Superhighway 1 is most definitely a Quietway, not a Superhighway. It runs of low-traffic side streets for almost its entire length… It is not ‘mostly on main roads.’”
Jenny Jones told East London Lines: “As a cyclist I’m not out for a day trip, I want to get places and back again in the quickest route possible. If it takes cyclists longer, even if it’s safer, it is only going to attract a certain percentage.”
“The Mayor needs to fix the main roads and junctions which he controls on the parallel route.
“It’s not good enough not making the main roads safe.”
TfL counters that the back street route only has eight sets of traffic lights, compared to 54 along the main road.
The Mayor of London’s Cycling Commissioner, Andrew Gilligan, said: This route will be quicker to deliver, more pleasant to use and more convenient for cyclists than anything we could do on the main road – including full segregation.’
Last week we reported how the CS1 is billed as an “A10 bypass” for people on bikes, with claims that cyclists will save more than a quarter of the journey time for travelling along its entire length compared to riding on the main road.
Where it does run alongside the main road, the cycle path is off-carriageway and – something that has grabbed a lot of attention – has trees running down the middle of it, presumably to encourage a two-way flow of riders.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: “Our research shows that well over 100,000 journeys in this area could be made by bike instead.
“This Cycle Superhighway will provide cyclists with a direct, protected route along quiet streets, making it even easier for people to hop on a bike rather than getting in their cars.
“This is exactly what the cycling revolution is all about – making it simpler and safer for ordinary people to choose to get on the saddle and enjoy London by bike.”
The consultation says: “Our research shows cyclists could ride from Tottenham to the City in around 30 minutes, compared with over 40 minutes for a similar journey along the A10. Cyclists on CS1 would pass through just eight traffic signals, compared with 54 traffic signals for the equivalent journey along the A10. We are confident CS1 would allow faster and more reliable cycling journey times.”
To see the detailed plans and have your say click here.
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.