13 July 2011

Much more bread to slice....

It's a Peruvian expression - meaning there is still a long way to go - no room for complacency.   Which, I wonder, may be a danger in London when it comes to promoting and enabling safer cycling.  In a nutshell, London seems to think that it, alone in the UK, has 'cracked' cycling - no need to go envy your fellow Europeans, cycling in London has doubled - and who ever cared about the rest of the UK anyway?

The reality is that, while there's been progress and numbers have certainly grown dramatically in the capital, there remains much to do, and some of the things being done could be better. This chimes with views expressed by David Henbrow about cycling in London.

Take this as an example.  These very short clips show a dedicated cycle lane near King's Cross/St Pancras.  It is a segregated cycle lane - cor blimey, isn't that enough?  What more do cyclists want?

Now, look at the picture again.  I am prepared to accept the cycle lanes, even though they are very narrow - some sort of passing scrape or collision can only be a matter of time.  You can see how the change of direction so imposed baffles most people - one fellow just ignores it and carries on, others weave back into the traffic, almost recklessly.

Then you have this absurd design, in which suddenly all bike traffic going one way is directed to cross the path of bikes coming in the opposite direction and, a bit more abruptly than anyone wanting to live to cycle another day would like, rejoin the main carriageway and go back to competing against motor vehicles.

It's just not good enough.  I can't quite see why this is an OK arrangement.  It isn't.  And don't even get me started on the Boris Bikes.

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