Richmond Council is to start “urgent work” on a segregated cycle lane outside Kew Gardens, which reopens on Monday. Single yellow line parking will be removed from Kew Road to create the required space.
The council explained that the move comes in response to recent Government guidance instructing local authorities to make active travel improvements.
Protective barriers will be installed to create a 24-hour mandatory northbound cycle lane as part of the council’s Post-Covid Transport Action Plan.
A statement said: “The council has engaged with Kew Gardens and have considered their emerging transport plan their planned re-opening. The Council believes that these measures are crucial in discouraging unnecessary visits to the facility by car, as well as supporting much-needed cycling infrastructure at the same location.”
The spokesperson went on to say that the council would consult residents and businesses within weeks of the emergency changes being implemented about the future operation of existing Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs) and on the possibility of implementing a new CPS in the area around Kew Green.
Describing the change as “long overdue,” Councillor Alexander Ehmann, Chair of the Transport and the Air Quality Committee, for Richmond Council, said: “Kew Gardens is a global beacon of sustainability, but immediately outside the walls of this amazing institution lies a road that has been allowed to become a car parking lot. All provided via the creation of a sub-optimal cycle lane. Today that comes to an end.
“Covid-19 has changed the way we travel and looks set to do so for quite some time. We are delighted that Kew Gardens will be imminently re-opening, but this Council believes that we need to ‘build back better’. That means we need to back the role of cycling and walking with serious upgrades to our network.
“The measures on Kew Road are crucial. Even the interim arrangements with water barriers make this cycle route Richmond’s first-ever physically segregated cycle lane. I hope that this is the first of many such changes and that cyclists – both new and old – will make use of this safer arrangement.”