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TfL’s cycle route priorities are not the same as cyclists’

Rik Andrew London SE6
05 March 2018

Given Transport for London’s announcement of six mostly low priority new cycle routes (‘New cycle routes for inner & outer London’ LTT 02 Feb), I am almost inclined to say “come back Andrew Gilligan, all is forgiven” . What London needs is a coherent high quality network, not these isolated fragments that will have very little impact:

• Ilford to Barking is not strategic – and there is an existing London Cycle Network route, most of which is ok (the Barking end needs upgrading)

• Lea Bridge to Dalston is just a short extension to the overdue Lea Bridge Road cycle superhighway, which is still far from complete. It is not a new route

• Orbital routes e.g. Hackney to Isle of Dogs and  Rotherhithe to Peckham are low priority – we still lack good quality strategic radial routes in most areas

• Tottenham Hale to Camden is the only truly strategic and new route proposed by Will Norman

• Wembley to Paddington would indeed be a valuable new strategic cycle superhighway but not if it ends at Willesden Junction

Frankly, Sadiq Khan’s so-called strategic cycling analysis tool to identify cycle route priorities was the last thing we needed. It’s an academic exercise that has wasted a whole year. 

There are various other viable alternatives, which would complement the existing network much better:

• Canning Town to Barking would be a strategic extension to Cycle Superhighway 3 (East) (CS3(E))

• Stratford to Ilford would be strategic, as per the original plan for CS2 that TfL then axed in 2011 and has still not delivered

• Chelsea Embankment would be an easy and strategic extension to CS3(W), i.e. a fully segregated two-way track with safe junctions throughout

• Nine Elms Lane – Albert Embankment would be another straightforward solution (this was agreed by Andrew Gilligan as a replacement for the failed CS8, but not delivered

• CS7 also needs upgrading to ‘best practice’ – promised by Boris Johnson but not delivered, like CS8 it is still an unsafe blue-paint only joke ‘route’

• CS5 could easily be extended north via Vauxhall Bridge Road to Victoria, which is a real destination (again I thought this was agreed) and continued south to and through Oval junction. 

• CS1 (a.k.a. LCN10) could be extended north to Tottenham, but along the A10. This was 'consulted' on two years ago but again stakeholders were ignored 

• The A21 is flat and wide and could be a very good cycle superhighway through the whole of the London Borough of Lewisham and a logical extension to CS4, which is already planned along the A200

Yes, all of these are cycle superhighways, but that is what Will Norman promised to deliver.

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