17 January 2011

And this place our forefathers made for man!


Milton Keynes
Originally uploaded by alexliivet
Milton Keynes... I don't know. Un-British, car-centric 1960s monstrosity, where glass meets steel and modernism meets lack of taste.

Suburbia's own Jerusalem, all this I survey from a bus - long story, a job interview as it happens. I have been through MK before, but it was in a taxi which stuck to the periphery as soon as we left the train station. It is different from the bus, as it weaves its way in and out of neighbourhoods - and here's the link to cycling: beneath the car-centric surface, MK may well be more cycle-friendly than most large British towns and cities. For a start, more bikes I saw parked outside the railway station than I've seen anywhere else bar the rather a-typical Oxford. Certainly many more than in any Manchester station, by a long chalk.

Second, the town seems criss-crossed with segregated bike lanes - and by 'segregated' I mean really segregated, not council-speak for lip-servicing green paint on the verges of main roads. The place reminded me of parts of the Netherlands. The only caveat was that, in the whole journey I saw many more cycles parked than being ridden. Indeed the paths over green and gently rolling terrain looked like the ideal setting for a Silent Witness opening sequence - eerie, but with easy access for the productiont team.

2 comments:

ian... said...

That's interesting - I've heard a lot of anti-cycling whispers about Milton Keynes, but have never heard of the Redways before.

Another local cyclist (from Ashton) is working down in MK btw.

His blog is here...

Good luck with the job :>)

OldGreyBeard said...

Take a look at
http://forum.ctc.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=46081

A current discussion on the CTC forum all about the Redways