London Cycling Campaign welcomes focus on improving worst junctions but warns that traffic models still block cycle and pedestrian safety
- By London Cycling Campaign on at 1:03pm 9 December 2013
- Posted in: News and blogs, Press
- Tagged with: cycling safety, better junctions, traffic modelling, boris johnson, pedestrians
The London Cycling Campaign has welcomed today’s announcement by Mayor Boris Johnson of a timetable for making London’s most dangerous junctions safer for cycling.
This is a much need injection of urgency into the Mayor’s Better Junctions programme, which has so far failed to deliver on its promise to make cycling through London's worst junctions significantly safer.
However, we believe this programme has failed so far for the same reasons the Cycle Superhighways have failed to provide a safe cycling environment, namely that too many safe junction solutions, particularly those that provide protected space for cycling, are rejected because of their modelled impact on motor traffic.
Despite an increase in funding from £19 million to £100 million, and a reduction in the number of junctions being tackled – from 100 to 33 – there's little confidence that under the current remit the Better Junctions programme can deliver vital safety improvements unless the safety of cyclists and pedestrians is put ahead of motor traffic flow.
LCC Chief Executive Ashok Sinha said, "Mayor Boris Johnson must tell Transport for London that cycling safety should be prioritised, even if it means increasing some motor traffic journeys by a few seconds.
"Providing protected lanes on main roads and cycling-specific traffic lights at junctions like Bow roundabout are the only way to reduce the number cycling deaths and serious injuries, but these solutions are frequently rejected on the Superhighways and at major junctions across Greater London.
"Rather than causing congestion, encouraging more Londoners on to switch to bicycles is one of the best ways to reduce long-term traffic congestion on our streets as well as overcrowding on public transport."
The Better Junctions programme was announced in December 2011 after a series of high-profile on-street protests, including vigils at Kings Cross and Bow, both locations where a number of fatal and serious cycling crashes took place.
The Mayor promised the Better Junctions programme would tackled the 100 worst junctions in Greater London, and take substantial action to make them safer for cycling.