London to fast-track mass walking and cycling network

London to fast-track mass walking and cycling network

Plans are in place for a major transformation of safe walking and cycle routes across London, it was revealed last week.

With public transport capacity severely reduced, it is estimated that up to eight million journeys a day in London will need to be made by other means. Even a small shift to car journeys from public transport would cause major problems for the capital, including congestion, pollution and road safety issue. To avoid this harmful shift towards car use, steps are being to ensure Londoners can continue to get around by other means.

The 'Mayor's Streetspace Plan', announced by London's Walking and Cycling Commissioner Will Norman, will fast track the transformation of the UK capital's streets to allow millions more people to safely walk and cycle as part of their daily journeys. With more people looking to get around on foot and bike after lockdown measures are eased, convenient and connected walking and cycling routes will be needed to ensure everyone can travel around safely. Modelling has predicted that cycling could increase as much as ten-fold once lockdown measures are lifted as people seek ways to travel safely and hygienically.

The Streetspace Plan aims to repurpose road space and parking spaces for temporary cycle lanes and wider footways to allow people to safely socially distance when travelling. TfL plans to roll out a strategic cycling network using temporary materials and create new routes to reduce crowding on public transport lines. Traffic lights will be altered to reduce the time pedestrians have to wait to cross. Some roads could be restricted to provide access for only buses and bikes at certain times of the day. More space will be given to pedestrians to reduce crowding at key transport interchanges.

This comes as local boroughs across London seek to implement similar measures to give more space for walking and cycling. For example, Lambeth has recently announced measures to restrict street access to only walking, cycling and residential access.

You can read more about the Mayor's Streetspace Plan in this article from Bikebiz.