Your turn to save most progressive cycle path stretch in South-Camden

taviimg_20160923_192022A trial structure of a segregated two-lane cycle path on Tavistock Place in Bloomsbury, adjacent to Kings Cross / St Pancras (leading to Torrington Place), is under threat of being demolished, due to a disgruntled group of a handful, but well organised group of local activists in the area.

They falsely claim, that traffic has increased air-pollution, when in fact the independent results measured show already a 21% decrease in pollution for all, residents, pedestrians and cyclists, during the trial period.

The schema has forced a two-way motor traffic street into a single unidirectional lane for cars, for the benefit of a two-lane segregated cycle lane on each side (previously merged into a two way single cycle lane). This means that some like the London Taxi Driver Association (LTDA ) and a few others like the Imperial Hotel Group  (according to Camden Cyclists), dislike the schema.

However there are just as many who support the scheme, like Safer Bloombury , University College London, and naturally Camden Cyclists. Letters in support and some against have also found their way into Camden New Journal.

Camden is planning to further reduce through traffic in the long-run, meaning motor-traffic can enter and leave the area, but can not cross through North to South or East to West, which will bring about further reductions in non local motor-traffic.

The cycling schema is meant to increase and encourage safe cycle-use in an area that serves many universities with tens of thousands of students (UCL, SOAS, IoE, Birkbeck, a.o.) and in an area already immensely and adversely affected by car-traffic and car-pollution. In fact the schema already has let to a measured 52% increase in cycle traffic.

The street links into South-East Kings Cross via  Sidmouth Street and Ampton Street, which are soon meant to be part of the cycle super-highway schema from Farringdon Road to the South, but also via Judd Street / Pancras Road to the North, and once completed it would eventually enable hassle-free and save passage for cyclists of all ages all the way to Camden Town and Hampstead.

The cycle lanes have been inspired by the Amsterdam / Copenhagen transformations, and whilst so far but a short stretch, they are possibly the most progressive in South Camden.

LCC believes, that should the cycle path trial be rejected, there are no other alternatives in the pipeline, as the money for it stems from a former initiative. The dismantling of the schema would therefore immediately increase pollution and motor traffic and bring back cycling to its former low levels in this area.

All who are supportive of this schema (and those who are not), should make sure to leave their comments now on the web-site of Camden, or at the latest by 21st of October 2016.

Link here: https://consultations.wearecamden.org/corporate-services/torrington-place-tavistock-place-route-proposed-im/consultation/intro/view

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Daniel Zylbersztajn

Daniel Zylbersztajn, works as a journalist, mostly for German media, and as a Pilates Teacher. Born in Germany and raised in Germany, Holland and Israel, he is a long term resident of London Kings Cross, involved parent, local and social activist, and positive lifestyle advocate. He also held posts in research, and conflict work, a.o. for the Palestinian - Israeli peace village Wahat al Salam ~ Neve Shalom. He holds a BA in history and politics from SOAS and two Master degrees, in Urban Sociology (Goldsmiths) and Sports Coaching (Brunel) and tweets under @zylbersztajn
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6 Responses to Your turn to save most progressive cycle path stretch in South-Camden

  1. Hooray!!! An end to the cyclists’ domination of the roads! As it is, the hospital I attend, St. Pancras hospital, has had its two bus stops on both sides of the road removed to make way for a cycle path, depriving invalids and cripples of the ability to walk to the hospital. So much for cyclists’ concern for others. I AM delighted that the so-called pressure group (which I suspect includes a lot of local residents, tired of being mown down by cyclists who break the rules of the road whenever they get the chance) is likely to win.

  2. Hi Jo… and I am delighted that my daughter (8) and her friends can cycle on the street without being mowed down by cars. Life is about different perspectives and I understand yours. I would think that there are solutions to everything, including improving bus stops adjacent to cycle lanes. But a 21 percent reduction in air pollution can not be so easily dismissed, and that is just the start. There are no bus stops whatsoever by the way along the entire stretch of Tavistock Place and Torrington Place. Kind regards D.

  3. Bill says:

    Have any pedestrians been mown down, or otherwise injured by a cyclist on this stretch of road? Not to my knowledge and it is certainly easier to cross the road now that there are fewer motor vehicles on it.
    If the lanes were to be removed would there be room on the pavement for people using mobility vehicles who currently travel to the shops, medical appointments etc independently, or will they be stuck at home, waiting on hospital transport? It’s not just cyclists that use these lanes.

  4. Brian Honeyball says:

    The cycle lanes around Tavistock Place have been an unmitigated disaster They need reversing ASAP

  5. “Cyclist domination of the roads…” If safe cycling infrastructure weren’t a life and death matter for me, I would laugh at the absurdity of that characterization.

  6. tobiaskx says:

    I support the Bloomsbury https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woonerf. You’ve got to look at it in the context of the Judd Street proposals to understand the warm-hearted but radical idea behind this proposal of creating a home zone – an area for pure high quality residential life. Accessable by car, permeabie only by walking and cycling. I speak as a resident of the ‘privilged area’ in the northeast of the zone (around Argyle Square WC1H) where this idea was implemented ten years or more years ago. This area is such a beautiful area now.

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