Save our pop-up cycle lane!

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Si
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Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby Si » 20 Sep 2020, 4:11pm

We got a new pop-up segregated cycle lane in Sutton Coldfield. If takes one lane of a two/three lane carriageway and allows cyclists to ride between the town centre and the local large park (which has various other cycle routes running out of it). I've ridden it a few times and although not perfect (what is?) it's a lot better than not having it.

Alas a local councillor wants it removed on 'safety grounds'. He is someone with no experience of cycling or road safety. He's started a petition to have the lane removed.

There is a counter petition to have it retained and expanded. http://chng.it/kkCJMJMJCB

Please do sign it if you'd like to support the lane.

BTW, the photo on the petition is it in its part complete form - there is now physical separation (wands) between the cycle space and the lanes open to all traffic.

Thank you.

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mjr
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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby mjr » 20 Sep 2020, 6:28pm

That's change.org hiding behind that redirect. I can't sign anything on that :(
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merseymouth
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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby merseymouth » 24 Sep 2020, 8:29am

Hi Si, On Tuesday last a vandalized Pop-Up Lane nearly did for me?
Maybe I am too inexperienced to use such facilities, well I've only been cycling for about 68 years!
In my case pond-life set out to wreck the facility, putting me on my tricycle at about 20 mph at genuine risk of death. But this novice cyclist luckily managed to avoid paying the ultimate price for what in my case a stupid, ill-conceived waste of money!
Cycle facilities are rarely engineered properly in this country, which is certainly the case here in Liverpool, the ones in Liverpool did Pop-Up, without any sensible thought being applied!
I will strive to have the one that endangered me removed, it is not fit for purpose nor was there a case offered for a need!
The only measure that needs to be implemented and enforced should be the speedy removal from our roads people who use the in a negligent and unlawful fashion. Rather on the lines of "If you hit a vulnerable road user you will have to prove that they intended suicide", fail in that and you lose the permission to use a vehicle on our roads! MM

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby Richard D » 29 Sep 2020, 7:44pm

Have they reopened the cycle lane yet, Si? When I went past it last week, the cycle lane itself was barriered off by Amey's finest orange plastic :(

It wasn’t just the councillor; Andrew Mitchell MP was also complaining about that pop-up cycling lane (though at least he managed not to call anyone a pleb).

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby merseymouth » 30 Sep 2020, 8:35am

Hi Si, These "Pop-Up Cycle Lanes" may please some people, but sadly they will endanger more than they please!
What the people who install them fail to realise is that cycling is a wide term for pedal powered movement. The laws were structured at at a time when the nature of cycle design was extremely varied, so cycle provision must allow for the fact that such machines can still be used with pleasure by a number of folk.
The current provision only seems to be aimed at the safety bicycle, and even then on uphill stretches they offer little wobble room, something which my local cycle officer says she's aiming the facilities at, newbies.
Tricycles, tandem-tricycles, tandems, long-Johns, cycle trailers (both cargo & child), they all have to be considered!
I currently see more Long-John here, very useful.
One conventional cycle lane close by my home is an absolute disgrace, in one direction riders have to navigate over two lanes of motor traffic to get onto it and in the other direction riders have to make two 90 degree turns within 4 yards!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So good cycle provision is certainly needed, but sadly the folk doing the work here are simply "Unfit For Purpose"! MM

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby MikeF » 30 Sep 2020, 9:57am

Pop-up cycle lanes generally have generated calls for their removal. The problem is this money was allocated in haste and generally not much thought was given to what should or needs to be provided, because people not enough people who make these decisions actually ride a bike on roads! Many motorists, as well, are annoyed by the fact that, in some cases, some of "their road space" has been lost so they are generating absurd or exaggerated claims for objections. This is what has happened in Tonbridge; More 20mph zones as opposed to just pop-up lanes.
"It takes a genius to spot the obvious" - my old physics master

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby Si » 30 Sep 2020, 2:30pm

The one I was referring to is one that I and several others have used a number of times and, as stated, it could be better (but then everything could be better), but was perfectly usable. I would be happy to ride along it with children, or, indeed, allow a child who has achieved bikeability L2 to use it alone. The bit that was being complained about was where the cyclists had to stop at a bog standard give-way line and give way to traffic exiting a car park from their left*. The alternative was for cyclists to ride along a dual carriageway, with no protection, and then find themselves in the second lane of a three lane carriage way as the exit from the car park formed a new first lane - thus the cyclist now had cars on both sides of them, often going faster than they were, with the need to filter into the left lane to gain the next turn off.

The councillors and now (as noted above) a certain infamous cycling MP have adjudged the cycle lane too dangerous but have made no alternative suggestion on how to improve it, rather they have insisted it just be removed, whilst continuing to assure us that they support cycling and green initiatives.

The council have agreed to remove it.

There is a plan to make the whole of the road in question a cycling/pedestrian only area, at some unspecified time in the future.

*I think that the original plan was that the traffic exiting the car park would give way to the cycle path but the planners obviously thought that that was beyond some drivers' abilities.

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby merseymouth » 30 Sep 2020, 3:42pm

Hello again, I have responded to the Tonbridge Consultation process. This was done to encourage them to implement well thought out schemes rather than the "Rush for the cash" that far too many places have done.
20mph ones would permit sensible traffic management but also ensure the safety of all vulnerable user groups.
If a careless driver hits someone at speeds much less than 30mph then injury and death is far less likely to occur.
But I would also love to see those Electronic Speed Disclosure Signs being more widely used especially if the could be combined with speed cameras!
I regularly see the signs flash at the speeding drivers, but they don't slow down? Maybe if the also doled out fines on such offences then drivers might change the behaviour??? MM

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby mjr » 30 Sep 2020, 3:44pm

MikeF wrote:The problem is this money was allocated in haste and generally not much thought was given to what should or needs to be provided, because people not enough people who make these decisions actually ride a bike on roads!

Actually, my understanding from two people who make decisions on what to spend this money on and actually ride bikes on roads (and I know they do because they told me this while doing so) was that almost no thought was given to what is currently needed because only "shovel-ready" schemes were allowed to be included in the bid for this money.

So the quick, easy and obvious were effectively prioritised by the way Shapps's DfT defined the scheme. The only way anywhere gets anything decent in that process was if local government had already drafted cycling schemes for some reason, such as a recent past project that was scrapped.

merseymouth wrote:The current provision only seems to be aimed at the safety bicycle, and even then on uphill stretches they offer little wobble room, something which my local cycle officer says she's aiming the facilities at, newbies.
Tricycles, tandem-tricycles, tandems, long-Johns, cycle trailers (both cargo & child), they all have to be considered!

Hopefully the following from the new Cycling Infrastructure Design book will eventually be read by the people working near you. It tells them what widths and lengths of cycle they must consider and there is now a lurking threat that if a new government agency (Active Travel England) spots them building crap, they will lose funding for motoring and possibly have their whole highways department taken away for a while!
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Figure 5-2 illustrating cycle sizes
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merseymouth
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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby merseymouth » 30 Sep 2020, 3:53pm

+5 mjr, Spot on :D :D :D MM

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby MikeF » 2 Oct 2020, 2:04pm

mjr wrote:
MikeF wrote:The problem is this money was allocated in haste and generally not much thought was given to what should or needs to be provided, because people not enough people who make these decisions actually ride a bike on roads!

Actually, my understanding from two people who make decisions on what to spend this money on and actually ride bikes on roads (and I know they do because they told me this while doing so) was that almost no thought was given to what is currently needed because only "shovel-ready" schemes were allowed to be included in the bid for this money.

I think we're saying the same. "Shovel ready schemes" (don't councillors love that phrase) are sadly lacking mainly because no-one with any say ie councillors, rides a bike on the road.
"It takes a genius to spot the obvious" - my old physics master

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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby Richard Fairhurst » 2 Oct 2020, 2:24pm

mjr wrote:So the quick, easy and obvious were effectively prioritised by the way Shapps's DfT defined the scheme. The only way anywhere gets anything decent in that process was if local government had already drafted cycling schemes for some reason, such as a recent past project that was scrapped.


In theory, local councils should be writing LCWIPs which are exactly this.

In practice most of them aren't. (Special prize as ever to Oxfordshire, which has a couple of LCWIPs but largely ignored them for their Tranche 1 bid...)
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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby Cyril Haearn » 2 Oct 2020, 2:44pm

merseymouth wrote:+5 mjr, Spot on :D :D :D MM

+6
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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby mjr » 2 Oct 2020, 4:55pm

MikeF wrote:I think we're saying the same. "Shovel ready schemes" (don't councillors love that phrase) are sadly lacking mainly because no-one with any say ie councillors, rides a bike on the road.

No, I think we're saying different things. I have been on a recent bike ride on the road with a current cabinet county councillor. I have met past council leaders while we've both been out riding our bikes on the road. No amount of riding on the road would give their staff time to develop any new schemes to the point of being eligible for the emergency active travel fund bid.

Richard Fairhurst wrote:In theory, local councils should be writing LCWIPs which are exactly this.

In practice most of them aren't. (Special prize as ever to Oxfordshire, which has a couple of LCWIPs but largely ignored them for their Tranche 1 bid...)

My understanding is that Norfolk is writing some LCWIPs, but the problem was that the LCWIPs aren't finished yet. It also seems like projects in early LCWIPs wouldn't comply with the latest design requirements so weren't submitted.

I suspect councils were being expected to guess in May what might comply with the design guide published in July, so most played it very very conservatively and unimaginatively. So that's why we've mainly seen things that look a bit like cautious mini versions of London's Low Traffic Neighbourhoods and I don't think anywhere in England is seeing the sort of radical street change seen in Blackrock, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, Ireland, or the other things that I expect to see in this weekend's BBC documentary.
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Re: Save our pop-up cycle lane!

Postby Tangled Metal » 3 Oct 2020, 8:50am

Where's the recumbent towing a trailer??
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