London is tackling increasing congestion and air pollution. The subject itself is not a novelty. Recently, the British capital was grabbing the headlines by announcing to have the largest electric powered bus fleet in Europe. However, London does not rest on its laurels. Next undertaking: Cycling in London. With a financial support of £770m for cycling initiatives in London up to 2021/2022, announced by the Mayor Sadiq Khan, expenditures for cycling will be doubled compared to the previous mayor Boris Johnson. An average £154m per year means an average per-capita investment of £17 yearly. In this case, London will be on par with cycle-friendly cities in the Netherlands and Denmark.
Two new cycle superhighways are planned to make cycling in London even more attractive
Ashok Sinha, CEO of the London Cycling Campaign, said: “This unprecedented investment in cycling shows the Mayor is serious about meeting his promises to triple the extent of London’s protected cycle lanes, fix the most dangerous junctions and enable boroughs to implement major walking and cycling schemes. It will help make London a better, greener, healthier and less congested city.”
An essential objective is to reach or exceed 1.5 million cycle journeys per day by 2025/26. Among other things, proposals for new cycle superhighways (CS) for a safer and faster journey from Olympia to Hounslow (CS9) and Tower Bridge to Greenwich in southeast London (CS4) are on the table. Consultations will take place in 2017. Furthermore, a complete traffic separation or relocation on quiet back streets of the 5km North-South route (CS6) from Farringdon to Kings Cross is on the way. Extensions for other routes, solutions for traffic-dominated junctions, a cyclist and pedestrian bridge connecting Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf, and the elimination of gaps in cycle routes are planned, too. In the past, London’s cycle superhighways attracted criticism for safety reasons.
“Our plans include consulting on two new Cycle Superhighways next year, in addition to a new East-West Route. And unlike the previous Mayor, we will continue to focus on how we can minimize disruption and congestion as we push ahead with the construction of new cycling infrastructure.” says Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London.
Former mayor Ken Livingstone announced the first new bicycle routes, called Cycle Superhighways, in 2008. By that time, completion was scheduled for 2012 in order to quickly connect outer London into and across central London. Unfortunately, just seven cycle superhighways, CS1—CS3 and CS5—CS8, were ready to use. Cycle Superhighway 6 from Penge to the City and Cycle Superhighway 12 from East Finchley to Angel were struck from the agenda. In the past, London’s cycle superhighways attracted some criticism for safety reasons, which, in the best case, will have an end with the £154m yearly.