A new YouGov poll has found there is strong public support for building more segregated cycle lanes alongside main roads. The Independent reports that 71 per cent of those questioned supported building segregated cycle tracks along main roads in their local areas, against just 18 per cent who were opposed and 11 per cent who didn’t know.
In mounting a High Court challenge to one of the capital’s cycle superhighways, the head of the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association suggested that the traffic disruption resulting from its construction was “sucking the lifeblood from London.” However, in contrast to this, the poll found that support was still over 50 per cent among all groups, even when it was suggested that construction work might delay commutes to work by five minutes.
Chris Boardman, British Cycling’s policy advisor, commented:
“This YouGov poll shows us, yet again, that the vast majority of the public want to see more cycle tracks on main roads.
“This is what people are telling their democratically elected leaders they want; meaningful resource to deliver segregated infrastructure on an ambitious scale to unlock the benefits cycling can offer our society. If this kind of evidence isn’t enough to give politicians and transport authorities the confidence to act, I don’t know what is.”
However, Chancellor George Osborne “isn’t listening to the evidence” on transport investment, according to CTC’s Roger Geffen, who says there is a complete mismatch between the Government’s stated aims for a cycling revolution and where the money is going.
The £300m allocated by the government for cycling over the next four years equates to just £1.39 per head per year – far short of the £10 recommended by cycle campaigners.
Last week, the minister for cycling, Robert Goodwill, told road.cc that decisions about cycle spending would increasingly be in the hands of local government.
“You’ll be aware that the government’s agenda is all about devolving power to local government to local people, to Local Enterprise Partnerships, and so in many ways by devolving that decision making we’re giving them the responsibility to deliver cycling infrastructure.”
Boardman said the case for more segregated cycle lanes was obvious and expressed his impatience that more wasn’t being done. “Business wants it, the public want it, the environment and the health service needs it. I really don’t understand what we are waiting for.”