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Ridgeway cycle way nears completion

Gates have appeared on a new cycle path in Cambridge, causing cyclists to ponder their ‘bizarre’ design..

The gates were installed on the Ridgeway route near Storey’s Way this week, and are staggered, meaning cyclists have to slow down and wobble between them.

The cycleway is not yet officially open.

Cyclist Oliver Chick told Cambridge News: “Cambridge now has a bizarre set of fences and gates on the cycle path along the Ridgeway.”

Matthew Danish, a member of West Cambridge Active Travel, described the gates as “ill-advised”, and said they should be removed.

He said: “The gates appear to be a strange and ill-advised method of keeping cars off of the newly-built path, a method that the latest standards say should not be used.

“We are worried that the gates will exclude people from using the path, such as families with tandems and trailers, novice riders who may find tight manoeuvres difficult, or persons with disabilities using tricycles or mobility scooters.

“The gates will cause unnecessary conflict between path users, and the obstacle they pose will distract people from the junction ahead of them, potentially leading to crashes that could have been avoided.”

He added: “The normal solution is to use thoughtfully selected and designed bollards, as found on cycling routes all around Cambridge. We will be asking the North West Cambridge project team to remove the gates and replace them with properly placed and clearly visible bollards.”

A Cambridge University spokeswoman said: “These works are ongoing, being built in accordance with the planning permission granted by the local authorities, and we look forward to welcoming residents and visitors when the development opens later this year.”

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.