Cyclists outnumber cars in City of London

"Cyclists have for the first time outnumbered motorists on some of the country's busiest commuter routes during rush hour" reports Robin Henry in Today's Sunday Times (p.11).

Henry quotes monitoring data from Transport for London, Mouchel/Sustrans and the City of London. The Corporation of London's assistant director for planning and transportation, Iain Simmons said "On some roads such as Cheapside cycles account for more than 50% of the traffic and these numbers are going up and up every year."

Cycles account for up to 42% of traffic on Southwark Bridge, 35% on Blackfriars Bridge and around a quarter of all traffic entering central London in the morning peak hour according to TfL monitoring.

For London Cycling Campaign, Mike Cavenett said, "There needs to be more sensible planning, which gives cyclists the appropriate road space, provides safer junctions and reduces speed alongside cycle lanes to 20mph.

"We have these huge motorway-style dual carriageways in the centre of London, which are completely unnecessary. Instead there should be a lane for cars and a lane for cyclists."

The City of London is considering introducing 20mph limits on all its streets and already allows two way cycling on many narrow streets which are one-way for motor traffic.  These measures to reduce danger recognize that walking and cycling are the most popular choices for transport in the City.

London Cycling Campaign supports the call for 20mph on every road in the City and on all the bridges across the river, especially Blackfriars.  A report for TfL in 2008 concluded that 20mph on the four bridges with the highest casualty rates would save £7m. over five years.

Last week Norman Baker, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary for State at the Department for Transport, said that the government wants to provide the framework to allow local authorities freedom to provide for the transport choices of all people.

London Cycling Campaign's Charlie Lloyd commented, "DfT ministers should make it clear that the Traffic Management Act should no longer be used to block local policies aimed at reducing road danger and increasing cycling".  In London hundreds of proposals to reduce danger for cyclists on the London Cycle Network and the Cycling Superhighways have been over-ruled in order to maintain motor vehicle capacity.


It's the Traffic Management Act, not the Transport Management Act


Vole O"Speed

  • By Jon at 8:10am 20 June 2011

There's also a needless full stop in the first par, and the third from last. And why no picture? Or more from the ST article itself? Kudos for putting something up on a Sunday, but this story was an opportunity only half-seized.

But why is this all so surprising? The vast majority of City workers, own cars or use them, don't own cycles and never use them but would never dream of bringing their cars to the city. I stopped working in the City about 18 years ago, and for 30 years before that I would only take my car at weekends or on night work so I think this is a bit of a non-story really.

London transport is unique nationwide. The options for London commuters are vast and simply could not be replicated anywhere else. So we have to be realistic about all this.


This post was edited by Drivers' Protest Union at 9:25am 20 June 2011.

The full Sunday Times article can be read by subscribing to their website. We would love to publish more of it, especially the graph showing the number of cycles being higher than cars between 7am and 9am.

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