You wait ages for a Cycle Superhighway, then three come along at once...

Sneaking them in just before the Mayoral election purdah period, TfL have announced three new public consultations on three new Cycle Superhighways - so get your comments in quick because they all close on the 20 March.

The London Cycling Campaign will be putting together full consultation responses to share as soon as possible (our Infrastructure Campaigner is just finishing up a massive series of Quietway consultations first). But for now, here's what is proposed and our initial take on them:

1. CS11 Swiss Cottage to West End

There're lots of exciting elements to this new route - the proposal to close the Outer Circle to through motor traffic, the removal of the Swiss Cottage gyratory, the proposal to put segregated cycle lanes on Portland Place. But there are also significant concerns - Outer Circle should be closed 24 hours a day, some of the junctions when we initially saw them retained serious risks, there is an option for only advisory cycle lanes on Portland Place etc.

2. The East-West Cycle Superhighway extension from Paddington to Acton

Including taking a lane of the elevated Westway to create a high-quality track, separated by a screen and barriers, from motor traffic. It looks likely we will support this iconic, and controversial scheme, despite significant concerns. On one hand, it offers no route choice or mid-point entry/exit points - and is too separate from the street network, which cuts down its usefulness; on the other, it looks likely that this is the only way we are likely to see a Cycle Superhighway into West London any time soon - as at least one of the councils it passes through simply won't countenance any alternative route, apparently. Given this, far better to have this high-quality track than not.

3. The North-South Cycle Superhighway extension from Farringdon to Kings Cross

Extending the North-South Cycle Superhighway to near Kings Cross is broadly something to be excited about. But when we last saw plans there were still significant concerns over some of the junctions with the worst collision records (including West Smithfield/Snow Hill), and the route northbound turns into a "Cycle SuperQuietway" at Farringdon Station - potentially with many current cyclists continuing to ride up Farringdon Road without any protection, and concerns over whether the quieter streets will genuinely be quiet enough.

Of course, that's far from it for public consultations right now. There's CS3 Cable Street proposals to use modal filters and "bus gates" to boost capacity for cycling there; Hammersmith Broadway gyratory changes; Highbury Corner protected tracks and gyratory removal; Kings Cross gyratory removal; a load of Westminster Quietway/Central London Cycling Grid consultations closing soon and much more. You can see most of these on our new consultation map.

Replies

  • By paul at 5:34pm 19 February 2016

The Cable Street proposals look OK to me as an very occasional visitor. (the main problem was getting on to the east end from the north which is not being addressed)

Any issues that I haven't noticed ?

With regards to the East-West Superhighway extension, I have some sympathy with your position. Still, unless you have information to the contrary, I think it is safe to assume that the alternative route is the one originally planned (i.e. along Kensington High Street). It is already clear that the local council won't countenance a segregated cycleway along this thoroughfare, and so, if we want to see a high-quality route out towards Park Royal - and we do - then there doesn't seem to be any other option but to support this scheme. As you say, it's far better to have a high-quality track than not.

However, you also make the point that the elevated section along the Westway "offers no route choice or mid-point entry/exit points - and is too separate from the street network, which cuts down its usefulness". These are not trivial points. There is a very high possibility, then, that the elevated section would not be well used, and that there would be political consequences of this. 

I have prepared a map for your consideration (here). 

Sorry, but this Westway scheme is just stupid. As you say it's inaccessible from anywhere along the 3.5 miles of its route and at the western end will dump cyclists on the A40.

In addition, it's up on a very exposed bridge where riders will be at the full mercy of the wind and rain.

Bike tracks are needed at ground level, where poeple actually live and cycle around. Indeed cycle infrastucture is really only needed where there are people, there's no point in putting it where there aren;t any,

Frankly, very few people will use this route. 3.5 miles is around the normal cycling distance, so just who is expected to be using it? What will most likely happen is it will sit there unused by all but a few MAMILs demonstrating in a very public way that there is no demand for cycle infrstucture. It could be very bad PR for the cause of cycling in London.

I suncerelyt hope LCC say "no" to this hairbrained scheme. Keep on fighting for what is needed and wanted. It may take a bit longer but it will be worth it.

  • By issia at 11:53am 23 February 2016

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Sorry, but this Westway scheme is just stupid. As you say it's inaccessible from anywhere along the 3.5 miles of its route and at the western end will dump cyclists on the A40.  houston rodeo 2016 tickets

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Worth nothing that the CS11 proposals are up against massive objections from residents of St John's Wood who can't bear the fact that they will have to drive slightly further to get into Central London (!) Currently there's a petition on Change.org against the superhighway with 1500 signatures and counting.

I agree with LCC that CS11 plans are not perfect but they are a step in the right direction and a bold move from TfL. If cyclists want to see this happen they will have to answer the consultation  in huge numbers or TfL are bound to drop it becuase of the local opposition, and they will probably use it as an excuse not to try anything similar.

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