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Updated: 1 hour 35 min ago

Richmond Park closure - our groups respond

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 15:19

Following the closure of Richmond Park to cycling, one of eight Royal Parks in London, our local group, the Richmond Cycling Campaign, has written to The Royal Parks regarding the situation.

The LCC alongside our borough groups in Kingston, Merton and Wandsworth, bordering the park, and Regent's Park Cyclists, CPRE London, London Living Streets and Parks for People have all co-signed the letter. Richmond Park Cyclists, the group representing (sports) cyclists who use the park have also been liaising with The Royal Parks and cover the issue in their newsletter - raising broadly similar concerns to the letter. 

The Royal Parks took the decision last week to close the park due to some people failing to socially distance during the current Covid-19 pandemic. This follows moves they already took including closing all cafes in all parks and closing the outer London parks, including Richmond, to motor traffic.

The letter poins out that it has been a "joy to see so many families and so many with adapted cycles cycling, as well as walking and scooting, enjoying the freedom of a car-free park", highlights how important the park is for exercise (the park remains open for cycling for under 12s and keyworkers who show a badge). And suggests ways forward including utulising local volunteers to reopen the park for safe and responsible cycling.

The full letter is readable here.

Categories: London

Jonathan Kelly gets NHS staff cycling with Brompton

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 12:42

LCC member Jonathan Kelly is a co-founder of the new Better Streets for Kensington & Chelsea group, and General Manager of Barts Heart Centre at St Bartholomew Hospital. He’s helped and encouraged his staff to cycle to work during the coronavirus crisis and he’s also been instrumental in Brompton’s scheme to loan bikes to NHS staff across London for free.

Jonathan was already in talks with Brompton on behalf of the hospital before the coronavirus crisis hit and they were keen to help. He put them in touch with NHS London, and Brompton are now loaning their bikes for 30 days to NHS staff for free - and will extend the scheme as long as the crisis lasts. Five hundred NHS workers in London have taken up the offer so far.

 

Great to see @BromptonHire & @BromptonBicycle helping to keep #NHS moving @BartsHospital @NHSBartsHealth

Let’s make sure we can keep people like Zoe cycling after this by ensuring London has safe segregated spaces for cyclists in every borough @willnorman @london_cycling pic.twitter.com/H6XbuTcDiq

— Jonathan Kelly (@JKBartsHeart) March 28, 2020

“The pandemic has really made our staff think about how to get to work,” says Jonathan. “We have to avoid the risk of infection on crowded tube trains and buses. Those who own cars and live ten or more miles away have started driving because there’s no congestion charge, but for those who live nearer and don’t own cars, a bike is the only real option. Especially with such quiet roads right now.”

Jonathan cycles to work daily along the notoriously dangerous Holland Park Avenue, where Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea council are debating a road safety scheme, Cycleway 10. Normally it’s hellish, but now, “I could do the entire journey with my eyes shut. It’s empty.”

Of the 20 or so staff at Bart’s Heart Centre who have just started cycling to work, about half are women. Zoe Carter, a cardiac physiologist at St Bart’s, hadn’t cycled since living in London but took up the free Brompton offer to avoid the tube. Another is Sandra Mulrennan, a clinical nurse specialist, who hadn’t cycled since she moved to London from Cambridgeshire. 

“I avoided cycling in London because of traffic, the speed of other cyclists, pedestrians and road markings and also getting lost! What promoted me to dust the cobwebs off the wheels? I saw lots of encouraging tweets from Jonathan (@JKBartsHeart) and also I thought I need a contingency to get to work if public transport fails me.”

Jonathan put Sandra in touch with her local LCC group for tips on route planning, who she says “took into account my fear of the Old Kent Road and navigating Elephant and Castle”.

She says, “It may take me an hour but I have done it a few times now, and feel a sense of accomplishment.  It was a bit windy today going over Blackfriars Bridge but I kept thinking of a coffee once I got to Bart’s!”

“We talk a lot about the psychological wellbeing you get from cycling,” says Jonathan. “It’s a good way to decompress after a stressful day at work.”

The question is – what will happen when the crisis is over? 

“Now is the best time to do it,” says Sandra. “It will be a different story when London gets busy again.” 

Jonathan is clear that safe segregated cycleways are needed across every borough in London. “Then people like Zoe and Sandra can keep cycling when the pandemic is over.”

Are you returning to cycling during the coronavirus crisis? LCC are offering free advice by phone, email and online chat - find out more here

Categories: London

NHS staff get cycling with borrowed Bromptons

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 12:41

LCC member Jonathan Kelly is a co-founder of the new Better Streets for Kensington & Chelsea group, and General Manager of Barts Heart Centre at St Bartholomew Hospital. He’s helped and encouraged his staff to cycle to work during the coronavirus crisis and he’s also been instrumental in Brompton’s scheme to loan bikes to NHS staff across London for free.

Jonathan was already in talks with Brompton on behalf of the hospital before the coronavirus crisis hit and they were keen to help. He put them in touch with NHS London, and Brompton are now loaning their bikes for 30 days to NHS staff for free - and will extend the scheme as long as the crisis lasts. Five hundred NHS workers in London have taken up the offer so far.

“The pandemic has really made our staff think about how to get to work,” says Jonathan. “We have to avoid the risk of infection on crowded tube trains and buses. Those who own cars and live ten or more miles away have started driving because there’s no congestion charge, but for those who live nearer and don’t own cars, a bike is the only real option. Especially with such quiet roads right now.”

Jonathan cycles to work daily along the notoriously dangerous Holland Park Avenue, where Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea council are debating a road safety scheme, Cycleway 10. Normally it’s hellish, but now, “I could do the entire journey with my eyes shut. It’s empty.”

Of the 20 or so staff at Bart’s Heart Centre who have just started cycling to work, about half are women. Zoe Carter, a cardiac physiologist at St Bart’s, hadn’t cycled since living in London but took up the free Brompton offer to avoid the tube. Another is Sandra Mulrennan, a clinical nurse specialist, who hadn’t cycled since she moved to London from Cambridgeshire. 

“I avoided cycling in London because of traffic, the speed of other cyclists, pedestrians and road markings and also getting lost!  What promoted me to dust the cobwebs off the wheels? I saw lots of encouraging tweets from Jonathan (@JKBartsHeart) and also I thought I need a contingency to get to work if public transport fails me.”

Jonathan put Sandra in touch with her local LCC group (Lambeth?) for tips on route planning, who she says “took into account my fear of the Old Kent Road and navigating Elephant and Castle”.

She says, “It may take me an hour but I have done it a few times now, and feel a sense of accomplishment.  It was a bit windy today going over Blackfriars Bridge but I kept thinking of a coffee once I got to Bart’s!”

“We talk a lot about the psychological wellbeing you get from cycling,” says Jonathan. “It’s a good way to decompress after a stressful day at work.”

The question is – what will happen when the crisis is over? 

“Now is the best time to do it,” says Sandra. “It will be a different story when London gets busy again.” 

Jonathan is clear that safe segregated cycleways are needed across every borough in London. “Then people like Zoe and Sandra can keep cycling when the pandemic is over.”

Are you returning to cycling during the coronavirus crisis? LCC are offering free advice by phone, email and online chat - find out more here. 

Categories: London

Extra care on the roads – Please

Mon, 03/30/2020 - 11:48

 

 

Extra care on the roads – pls  

London Cycling Campaign asks all road users to take extra care at this time as advised by Road Safety GB 

Yes, London’s roads are a lot less congested but there are key workers on bikes, including vital health workers, and families out for exercise, who may not be expert at cycling. (LCC is offering free advice for returning cyclists)  

Please drive and ride with consideration for those who might normally be on public transport – the last thing we want is collisions that could put more pressure on the NHS. If you see someone wobbling – take extra care – that could be a key worker.

The best thing to do is to stick to speed limits or drive even more slowly and give cycle users a wide berth – think ‘social distancing’ on the roads (that goes for cyclists as well as motorists). This light hearted video by the medal winning Brownlee brothers for Continental was made well before coronavirus but illustrates the point of staying wide apart.

Key workers and anyone else who needs cycling advice is welcome to contact LCC 

Categories: London

Record attendance online for LCC volunteer meeting

Thu, 03/26/2020 - 11:39

London Cycling Campaign’s regular Local Groups Forum had a record attendance in the week  after the coronavirus lockdown, with more than forty volunteers gathering on a video conference call. The Forum brings together the co-ordinators of LCC's 33 local groups and usually takes place at LCC's office in Wapping. The groups campaign for better cycling conditions and, before the pandemic, ran hundreds of guided free bike rides, bike repair clinics and socail events. 

At the meeting local issues were discussed online as was support for people who are currently isolated, communication with volunteers and helping key workers plan trips to work by bicycle. As you can see at the top of the LCC home page, we are running a phone helpline and chatline for anyone who is returning to regular cycling and needs advice  needs advice on cycling . The meeting was also briefed on LCC's significant report on Climate Safe Streets and there was also a discussion of  micromobility and its future. 

Many LCC local groups are using a range of communication channels to get together to provide both mutual support and support to others. Zoom was used to run the very orderly Local Groups Forum but we learned that LCC groups are using the whole gamut of technologies from Google Hangouts and Microsoft Teams to Whats app, Slack and others. LCC members, some of whom are IT professionals and web experts, were providing technical advice and are likely to continue to do so throughout the lockdown. 

 

 

 

  

Categories: London

Climate Safe Streets Report Launch

Thu, 03/19/2020 - 12:05

Today, the London Cycling Campaign launches its ‘Climate Safe Streets’ report, a roadmap to decarbonise the capital’s roads in the next 10 years.

Click here to read the full Climate Safe Streets report

It lays out in detail the specific decisions the next Mayor of London must take to achieve this, as well as the opportunity for boroughs to take a big leap towards addressing the Climate Emergencies they have declared. It shows how we can create a new, zero carbon, healthier and more efficient system for road travel that will render it unnecessary for most Londoners to ever own a car again after 2030.

Note: this report was produced before the postponement of the London mayoral election by 12 months. The arguments and policy proposals are, however, unaffected by this.

Right now we face a global health crisis that risks derailing action to rapidly decarbonise our transport systems, which is an absolute necessity if we’re to avoid an even more terrifying future and even larger global crises. However, the same current pandemic also represents an opportunity to reimagine how London works, shift away from our most unsustainable habits and reshape the capital to be healthier and more sustainable going forward.

Our Climate Safe Streets report sets out the eight priority areas where the Mayor of London and Borough Councils must work together to radically change the way Londoners move about the capital, for the better. Because while many, including the Mayor, have recognised the need for action and declared a Climate Emergency, they have yet to answer the fundamental question: what action will they take now to get to zero carbon in the next 10 years?

Too many leaders are holding up electric vehicles as the solution. But to meet climate change targets, we would need nearly a 60% reduction in car mileage, even if all cars were low emission, by 2035. And we’d still be left with problems of pollution, inactivity, congestion and road danger. Clearly, more needs to be done to encourage people away from private cars and provide a better, greener and more efficient alternative

The Climate Safe Streets our report sets out clear priorities for change, including:

  • Rapidly delivering a high-quality cycling network: to enable people to choose to cycle their everyday journeys
  • Introducing Smart Road User Charging: to discourage the most damaging and polluting motor vehicle trips
  • Supporting the growth of zero-carbon shared mobility options: such as dockless e-scooters (if made legal), cycles, e-bikes and electric car clubs, so that all Londoners have suitable, sustainable transport choices on their doorstep.

Taken together, these will drastically reduce carbon emissions, transforming the city into one where active, sustainable travel, such as walking and cycling become the standard choice for everyday travel. Where air pollution is reduced, with a heathier, more active population. Designing a city where the car Londoners own now will be the last one they’ll need.

Our Climate Safe Streets report sets out how London can rise to meet this challenge, leading the world out of this crisis and forward in creating Zero Carbon Roads. The Mayor and London Borough Councils will need to decide if they will deliver it, or carry on delaying until it’s too late.

Click here to read the full Climate Safe Streets report

Categories: London

Cycling to avoid Coronavirus?

Thu, 03/12/2020 - 13:59

Lots of people are taking up cycling at the moment in London in order to dodge packed tubes and buses, and avoid not just congestion but also potential exposure to Covid-19 (in Germany, the health minister is appealing for more people to cycle and walk and avoid public transport). So, if you’re getting (back) on your bike for the first time in ages, and rather suddenly, here’s some advice from the London Cycling Campaign experts:

  • Join us. Our membership means peace of mind with free public liability/3rd party insurance, exclusive discounts on theft insurance and at hundreds of bike, outdoors and other shops, a regular magazine, and you support our campaigning to make cycling safer and easier in London. https://membership.lcc.org.uk/join
  • Check bike before you ride. The “m-check” means looking over and checking over your bike for roadworthiness in a few simple steps. From the rear wheel, check your wheels are tightly on, check your spokes are not broken or wobbly, check your tyres are firm and at the right pressure (written on the tyre), then move up to check your seatpost is the right height and tight, back down to the middle, check your chain is oiled, your pedals spin, now up to the stem to check your handlebars and stem are firm, tight and aligned with front wheel, check the brakes work well, look at the frame to make sure it’s not cracked or dented, then finally down to the front wheel to repeat the checks you did on the rear. For more on this quick check and other maintenance issues: https://lcc.org.uk/articles/checking-your-bike-1
  • Get a fix. If your bike has more trouble than that, our local groups might well be running “Dr Bike” sessions near you. Check our events page: https://lcc.org.uk/events Or check our list of local bike shops that offer discounts for a service: https://membership.lcc.org.uk/discounts-and-benefits
  • Get back in the saddle. Cycling in London is very safe, and adds years to your life, health-wise. However it can feel quite intimidating. Lots of local councils offer free one on one adult lessons: https://lcc.org.uk/pages/cycle-training-for-adults And our extensive FAQ section includes plenty of advice on safer, more assertive riding techniques: https://lcc.org.uk/articles/road-positioning-and-turning-1
  • Lock it, don’t lose it. You probably need two decent locks to make theft a far less likely outcome – ensure your frame and both wheels minimum are locked to something solid and secure (that doesn’t wobble when shoved, and the bike can’t be lifted off of). See our short advice page here: https://lcc.org.uk/articles/cycle-security-lock-it-or-lose-it

We'll be updating this advice as the situation changes.

Categories: London

Lambeth Bridge lurches forward!

Fri, 03/06/2020 - 16:05

Upgrades to the horrific, dangerous roundabouts at both ends of Lambeth Bridge have finally moved forward today. The north one has previously been named the most dangerous roundabout for cycling in the UK. And the announcement comes after years of campaigning by LCC and its local groups. 

TfL has announced revised plans (see image above) and a construction timetable “subject to approvals and agreements” which strongly implies those holding the scheme back for so long have finally agreed a way forward. However, construction isn’t even set to begin until 2022 – meaning it’ll be over 10 years since we highlighted the junction in our Love London Go Dutch campaign until it’s complete. These changes are already too late for Moira Gemmill, her friends and family. Hopefully they won’t be too late for anyone else.

The scheme proposals were controversial at the time of consultation, with results of the consultation very much split down the middle (the northern roundabout got the worst result, 41% opposed vs 37% support). Major concerns raised were of banned turns leading to traffic displacement into more residential Westminster streets, increased congestion and pollution, and even that despite the horrific collision record of these junctions changes were “not needed”. Westminster Councillors campaigned against the proposals at the time – including fighting to retain the palm tree at the middle of the northern roundabout.

Powerful voices against

Sadly, several stakeholders raised objections to the scheme:

Church Commissioners for England “strongly objected to the proposals for Lambeth Bridge south” and were “concerned proposals might adversely impact to day-to-day operations at Lambeth Palace for both residents and visitors”. The Commissioners, however, barely mentioned the current safety record of the roundabout, and only mentioned safety, apparently, in opposing a keep clear box.

Westminster Council also opposed the scheme in its entirety at the time. Improved safety for cyclists “needed to be balanced with their duty of network management and transport objectives of lower emissions, quicker journey times and reduced congestion”.

MPs James Duddridge and Sir Alan Duncan opposed displacement of traffic into residential streets, as did ward councillors and several Lords.

Possibly strangest of all was the Millbank complex owners Motcomb Estates who said (according to TfL) their tower was “some distance from underground and national rail links which meant that walking to the site was unattractive, and visitors often arrived by taxi.” It’s 0.6 miles – about a ten minute walk.

Most openly anti-cycling comments came from the board of Westminster Gardens who “considered proposals to be a huge waste of public money and suggested that the project should be cancelled. They did not find the current, recently redesigned, Lambeth Bridge northern roundabout dangerous… Urged TfL to consider the registration of all bicycles as this had been demonstrated in other countries to have significantly reduced the loss of cyclists’ lives.”

Why delay?

As well as powerful voices set against the scheme, security forces have been pushing back improvements, we understand, to enable designs to move forward that include “hostile vehicle mitigation” measures to stop motor vehicle terrorist attacks. However, we remain convinced that none of these issues should have caused the delays the project has already seen, risking more lives of those walking and cycling, nor does the current two year delay before construction make much sense either. We’ll be pushing for clarification on this from TfL and the Mayor’s office as a matter of urgency.

Finally, the changes to the scheme on Lambeth Bridge North (see image above) have weakened cycling and walking provision too. Only one dedicated left turn lane to allow cyclists to avoid waiting at lights remains (two have gone and one more is now shared pavement). On two arms there are now staggered crossings for pedestrians. The bus bypass onto the bridge has also gone, which looks like it removes a potential hook risk that was criticised in the original scheme, but does leave some potential for longer delays for those cycling or potentially even less separation from turning traffic at the lights - we're trying to confirm which currently.

Categories: London

Protected space in London tripled, thanks to LCC

Fri, 02/28/2020 - 10:39

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced this morning that he has tripled the mileage of protected space for cycling in London since his election to 162km (counting each direction).

“In 2016, the London Cycling Campaign called on the mayor, Sadiq Khan, to triple the amount of protected space for cycling in London within one mayoralty,” said Dr Ashok Sinha, CEO, London Cycling Campaign. “We know that fear of collisions is the main reason more people don’t cycle; we also know that a mass shift to cycling is essential to help address the climate emergency. So we congratulate Sadiq, and his Walking & Cycling Commissioner, Will Norman, on reaching this important milestone. It makes London safer for cycling and will help more people to reduce their carbon footprints by getting on the bikes”

Sadiq and his commissioner haven’t just tripled protected space for cycling in London in four years. Sadiq has also produced funding criteria for its rebranded Cycleway network of main road tracks and quieter routes. This has decisively ended the “blue paint” era on main roads (but has to be improved in order to avoid using heavy ratruns as cycle routes). And ensured boroughs know they need to deliver good schemes to get funding.

As a result, they’ve spread safe cycling routes further into outer London. While boroughs like Waltham Forest, Enfield, and Camden, who were already delivering cycle tracks, have accelerated their progress, they’ve also been joined by boroughs such as Lambeth, Hounslow and Newham. Next? A joined-up network of routes that enables far more people to go from front door to office or shops without ever facing hostile driving and dangerous road conditions.

This will be key to enabling many more Londoners to cycle, and enabling our city to play its part in avoiding the worst of climate breakdown. A network of truly safe, comfortable and direct cycle routes is what has been needed to get other cities to mass cycling levels. That’s why one of the key pledges we will be asking Sadiq and the other Mayoral candidates to commit to in the run-up to the upcoming elections in May will be the rapid expansion of the cycle network, alongside other improvements to ensure by 2030 our roads transport system is carbon neutral. Watch this space for more on our campaign, launching soon!

From TfL’s press release

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and Transport for London (TfL) have announced that the amount of protected space for cycling in London that is either complete or under construction has reached a total of 162km – more than triple the amount compared to May 2016.

In 2016, Sadiq Khan pledged to triple the amount of protected space for cycling by May 2020 – a commitment which he has delivered and exceeded ahead of schedule. Protected space for cycling includes both full and semi-segregated cycle lanes along with stepped tracks, which keep people on bikes separated from motor traffic, reducing the risk of collisions and making cycling more accessible and convenient. 

To mark the milestone, Sadiq today met construction workers in Lambeth who are building protected space for cycling along Baylis Road as part of Cycleway 5 between Waterloo and Clapham.

The Mayor is committed to further expanding London’s network of cycle routes, building on his record investment which has led to record cycling numbers across the capital. The total distance cycled in London on an average day in 2018 exceeded 4 million km for the first time, the highest figure since monitoring began in 2015 and an increase of almost five per cent from the previous year. Growth in cycling was particularly strong in central London, where the number of cycling trips increased by more than five per cent. There was also strong growth in outer London, with an increase of six per cent.

Laid end to end, the 162km of protected cycle lanes would stretch from Leicester Square to New Street station in Birmingham. 

Construction work is currently underway across London to make cycling easier and safer including:

  • Cycleway 4, a major new route in southeast London between Tower Bridge and Greenwich, which will add 10km of protected space to the capital’s growing network
  • Cycleway 9 between Brentford and Olympia in west London will add 15km of protected space for cycling. Construction work to reduce road danger for the thousands of people cycling in the area started at Kew Bridge last year
  • Cycleway 34 will add 3.4km of protected space for cycling between Acton and Wood Lane when it is completed next month
  • A network of safe cycle routes as part of Camden’s scheme to transform Tottenham Court Road is currently under construction, including four kilometres of segregated cycle tracks connecting Bloomsbury and Fitzrovia with the West End to encourage more people to cycle.

Since 2016 more than 40km of protected space has been added through the Mini-Hollands programme, which includes Waltham Forest’s award-winning cycle network, Kingston’s Go Cycle scheme and Cycle Enfield.

Last year a new route through the heart of London, Cycleway 6, opened between Elephant & Castle and Kentish Town. The number of people using this new route since it was completed grew by 115 per cent between September 2018 and September 2019.

TfL research has shown that fear of collisions is one of the biggest factors putting people off cycling more often for their everyday journeys. TfL and the Mayor have committed to strict new standards for the capital’s network of high-quality Cycleways, based on the latest evidence, with a focus on traffic volumes and speeds, to give people the confidence that all routes will be safe and fit for purpose.

Schemes to build new cycle routes in London have also delivered significant improvements for people walking, with new pedestrian crossings, new public spaces and more pavement space for people walking.

Press release quotes

I’m really proud to have tripled the amount of protected space for cycling – making it safer and more convenient for Londoners across our city to cycle as part of their everyday routine. My record investment to enable more people to cycle is vital to tackle some of the biggest challenges our city faces - including the climate emergency and our toxic air – and has led to record cycling numbers. I’m determined to build on this success which is why I’m committed to expanding our network further so that even more Londoners can enjoy using our high-quality cycleways to get around the city,"

Sadiq Khan, The Mayor of London. 

I’m delighted that we have achieved our target of tripling protected space for cycling ahead of schedule. It’s clear that where we have built new high-quality infrastructure more Londoners are choosing to cycle, and our continued investment in a city-wide network will help support people of all ages and abilities to take to two wheels,"

Will Norman, London’s Walking and Cycling Commissioner. 

Enabling more people to cycle and walk more often is vital to supporting London’s growth and ensuring that the capital is a clean, healthy and sustainable place to live, work and visit. We’re determined to make sure that neighbourhoods across London have access to safe, high-quality cycle routes and continue to build a network of Cycleways that everybody can use to get around the capital,"

Gareth Powell, TfL’s Managing Director for Surface Transport. 

Protected space for cycling is absolutely vital in encouraging younger and more inexperienced riders to take up cycling. Keeping vulnerable road users safe by separating them from general traffic on our main roads, coupled with removing rat-running and traffic from our residential streets, will create the conditions for everyone to feel comfortable in making cycling a part of their everyday life. I am really pleased that we have got a London Mayor who is putting his money where his mouth is and who is backing councils like ours in Lambeth with the money to deliver miles of new protected healthy routes so people can walk and cycle more,"

Councillor Claire Holland, Deputy Leader of Lambeth Council (Environment and Clean Air).

Categories: London

20 mph limit on all red routes in central London

Thu, 02/27/2020 - 11:37

 

As of Monday 2nd March 2020 there will be a  20 mph limit on all red routes (TfL run roads) in central London (congestion charge zone). This brings LCC’s long-standing policy of making 20 mph the speed limit on all London roads where people live, work and shop closer to realisation, and with it, the accompanying reduction in the road danger caused by higher speeds.

All inner London boroughs except for Westminster and Kensington and Chelsea have already implemented 20 mph limits on their roads. Westminster is due to make a decision on a 20 mph limit on its roads this spring following a public consultation last year and the City of London is considering lowering the limit below 20 mph on its roads.

The roads affected by the new 20 mph limit are listed here. TfL say it wants to make a further 140 kilometres of its (red route) roads subject to 20 mph limits by 2024. This will put further pressure on boroughs that have yet to impose 20 mph limits even on residential streets to follow suit. This map shows which parts of London  still choose to retain 30 mph or higher limits on their roads.

There is a clear association between higher vehicle speeds and the severity of collisions. TfL states that speed is a factor in at least 37% of collisions where a person is killed or is seriously injured on London's streets. According to TfL in the years  2016 to 2018,  131 people were killed in speed-related collisions on London's streets.  A further 2,256 people were reported as seriously injured in collisions where speed was recorded as a contributory factor. According to the WHO (World Health Organisation) Pedestrians have been shown to have a 90% chance of survival when struck by a car travelling at 30 km/h (19 mph) or below, but less than 50% chance of surviving an impact at 45 km/h (27 mph).

 

 

 

Categories: London

UK cities pitch transport emission solutions that could reach London

Fri, 01/24/2020 - 15:42

UK cities pitch transport emission solutions that could reach London 

With an Ultra-Low Emission Zone(ULEZ) in central London, a growing network of Cycleways and several ‘mini-Holland’ boroughs the capital has attracted international attention for its progress on transport strategy.

But other UK cities are developing thier own solutions to the challenges of climate change, poor air quality and liveability.

Birmingham is the latest  to announce radical transport plans. Taking inspiration from the Belgian city of Ghent Birmingham now plans to reduce traffic travelling through the city centre by  dividing the city into zones, accessed only via a ring road, which will limit through traffic thereby cutting congestion, emissions and improving air quality. In an examination of both Birmingham‘s plans and Ghent’s implementation since 2017 Bikebiz editor Carlton Reid notes that a key element of the Birmingham’s proposals, which is yet to be tried in London, is a workplace parking levy of £500. Currently every driver in London allocated a free parking space at work effectively gets a tax-free benefit worth £2000 or more.

Bristol is due to introduce a ban on all (not just the most polluting)  diesel cars  in the city centre in 2021. London’s ULEZ restricts the most polluting diesel-engined vehicles but less polluting  Euro 6 generation  diesel vehicles are currently permitted into the ULEZ without a fine.  In Bristol a wider clean air zone will apply across a larger part of the city.

Nottingham was the first council in the UK to implement a workplace car parking levy (of £387) which has helped reduce congestion and raises some £9m per year that is used to improve public transport which, in turn, has some of the highest usage rates in the country. All of which contributes to falling CO2 emissions.

York's council has supported palns to exclude all 'non-essential' vehicles from the historic city centre within the next three years. The city faces heavy congestion during the summer months when many tourist visit.

Edinburgh aims to be carbon neutral by 2030 and the city's 10 year plan includes closing key streets to motor traffic, expanding the tram network and creating an integrated payment system for all public transport including cycle hire. 

Oxford's zero emission zone is due later this year. Petrol and diesel vehicles will have to pay a charge to enter the city centre unless they are exempt (which will apply to businesses until 2024) and residents will get a 90% discount till 2030.  

Brighton, which has declared a climate emergency,  has comissioned a report on making the city centre car free by 2023. 

London will likely follow some of the innovations being explored elsewhere as it seeks to meet a target of reducing car trips by 3 million per day despite a growing population.  The London borough of Hounslow is already consulting on a workplace parking levy and the City of London is committed to introducing a Zero Emission Zone (excluding both petrol,and diesel cars) by 2025. London Councils, which represents all London local authorities, is considering plans for a workpalce levy

London’s air quality levels are among the worst in the UK,  so to meet international commitments the capital  has to move more rapidly than other cities to reduce emissions. And added to that is the Mayor’s recent commitment to make the city carbon neutral by 2030 – to achieve that target the Mayor must address road transport which accounts for 19% of all greenhouse gas emissions. Boosting cycle use, walking and public transport are obvious steps but drastically reducing private car trips and decarbonising and consolidating freight journeys will also be required.  

Categories: London

Tweet at your MP

Thu, 01/23/2020 - 14:15

Without action on cycling, we know that fear of hostile and dangerous road conditions will continue to dissuade millions across the UK from cycling. The active engagement of MPs will be critical and so this week, LCC wrote to all newly elected and re-elected London MPs impressing on them the importance of promoting cycling as an everyday mode of transport and a key element in tackling the climate crisis. We reminded them that although London has become one of the leading cities for cycling in the UK, cycling rates still lag far behind many other European cities. 

In the run-up to the 2020 London Mayoral election, and beyond to the local council elections in 2022, LCC will be asking Mayoral and council candidates to commit to decarbonising London’s roads transport system by 2030, by boosting cycling, walking and public transport, and reducing motor traffic, to help tackle the climate crisis. MPs were asked to support the campaign.

We reminded them that although London has become one of the leading cities for cycling in the UK, cycling rates still lag far behind many other European cities. So we asked those who have not done so to join and support the All Parliamentary Cycling Group, a cross-party group of MPs from both Houses who work to get “more people cycling in the UK, more often.”

MPs were also asked to support cycle and other active travel schemes in their constituency and we offered to put them in touch with their local LCC group and our campaigns team so that they can understand why these schemes have been proposed and the benefits they will bring. To help inspire them, we invited them to be in touch with Waltham Forest Cycling Campaign who regularly organise tours of the area, as well as Kingston and Enfield, also part of the mini-Holland programme.

We encourage local groups to tweet their MPs, reiterating the offer to engage with them.

Categories: London

Member nominations invited for the LCC Policy Forum

Wed, 01/15/2020 - 11:50

The LCC Policy Forum​ is selecting a fresh set of members and welcomes new faces. The purpose of the Policy Forum is to carry out research and develop policy for the organisation. There are four meetings per year which are open to all members to attend, and between-meeting correspondence via email and Slack (a social media).

We currently are working on developing river crossing charging and micromobility policy. Being an elected member for a two-year term gives you voting rights at meetings. Full details are here: https://lcc.org.uk/uploads/13536

 

 No in-depth knowledge of policy is needed, just enthusiasm for cycling policy and commitment to meeting attendance. You can nominate yourself, and final selection will be made by LCC membership using online voting. Please send 100 words to info@lcc.org.uk <mailto:info@lcc.org.uk <mailto:info@lcc.org.uk> > with Policy Forum in the subject line. The closing date for nominations is January 31st.

Categories: London

South London Cycleway klaxon: more tracks, new crossings, fewer lethal roundabouts

Tue, 01/07/2020 - 15:48

TfL want to hear what you think about their plans for the extension of Cycleway 4, with the consultation on the route announced yesterday. The proposed 2.5km section from Charlton to Woolwich will link up to the section of Cycleway 4 in construction through the Greenwich town centre Liveable Neighbourhood, eventually giving South-East London a major cycle route that stretches from Tower Bridge (and eventually London Bridge) all the way to Woolwich.

The current phase tackles a lethal stretch of the A206 Woolwich Road with continuous cycle tracks and six new pedestrian crossings including to/from schools and the Woolwich Ferry. The road was site of 215 collisions in 2017 & 2018 alone, including 3 fatalities. And in 2017 in nearly 20% of those the victims were cycling.

Anger at Angerstein

The consultation also includes initial concept sketches of the plan for the infamously lethal and dangerous “Angerstein” roundabout, as above, which is just to the west of where this first phase of consultation ends. Our local group, Greenwich Cyclists and LCC as well as others have long campaigned for the Angerstein to be tamed. The concept looks exciting, and it’s refreshing to see TfL’s video clearly demonstrating the issues with Angerstein embedded on the consultation page (and below).

How to respond

TfL says Greenwich Council will consult on its plans for Greenwich town centre in spring, to compliment these proposals and connect to Cycleway 4 that is already in construction from the edge of Greenwich, through Southwark along Lower Road and up to Tower Bridge.

The current consultation runs until 16 February. And we will be providing a list of key points for anyone who wants to respond quickly to the consultation soon. Meanwhile, we have a Cyclescape thread up and running where you can ensure your thoughts on the consultation are fed in to our response. Or you can go straight to the consultation here – and we urge you to primarily be supportive of the scheme!

Quotes from the release

TfL also issued a press release on the new scheme. The following quotes are from it:

Simon Munk, Infrastructure Campaigner at London Cycling Campaign, said:

It is wonderful to see plans moving forward to tackle the infamous and lethal Angerstein Roundabout, something we have long campaigned for. These plans promise to deliver a major route for South London, eventually linking Tower Bridge to Woolwich, taming hostile and dangerous roads. This should not only help save lives, but also enable far more people to walk and cycle, cutting air pollution and climate emissions.”

Will Norman, London's Walking and Cycling Commissioner, said:

I'm delighted that we're pushing ahead with these bold plans - part of a new high-quality cycle route from Tower Bridge all the way to the heart of Woolwich. With additional pedestrian crossings and a new bus lane, the route will be made better and safer for everyone. The area around Angerstein roundabout has seen two fatalities in recent years, and we will continue to work closely with Greenwich Council to deliver these vital improvements as soon as possible.”

Cllr Denise Scott McDonald, Cabinet Member for Air Quality, Sustainability and Transport at the Royal Borough of Greenwich, said:

We welcome the plans to build a cycleway that would run between Greenwich and Woolwich. This is a great opportunity that will make it easier and safer for people to travel on foot, by cycle or public transport. These proposals will also support the Council's commitment to reducing air pollution and vehicle congestion.”

Cllr Danny Thorpe, Leader of Greenwich council, said:

This is great news for Greenwich as the proposed cycleway will make cycling and walking a much safer and convenient way for residents to travel in the area.”

Categories: London