The Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport warmly welcomes this week’s announcement by the Government that it is funding large scale plans to promote cycling in cities and national parks.
The Government says it will be ‘cycleproofing’ new road projects, and cutting red tape that can stifle cycle-friendly road design. Councils will be expected to up their game to deliver infrastructure that takes cycling into account from the design stage.
The Institute urges that where possible new road plans should also ‘busproof’ and ‘truckproof’ its routes, to ensure all road users’ needs are considered in both urban and rural road schemes. It believes that a holistic approach to road design, taking into account the needs of cyclists, freight and passenger transport operators, will help to drive the UK’s financial recovery and increase safety. This unified approach would mirror the well-received plans for London’s road network launched in the recent Mayor’s Roads Task Force.
CILT’s Chief Executive Steve Agg, who was one of the ‘wise men’ that contributed to the recent London Mayor’s Roads Task Force report, says: "Our generation inherits an urban road network largely designed for horse drawn vehicles, or at best slow post-war era cars. This is an opportunity to invest in new roads on which cyclists, and modern passenger and freight vehicles can co-exist safely. Successful projects elsewhere in Europe point the way for a much more cohesive network, as friendly to the cyclist as it is accessible to the buses which get people to work and the freight operators that keep our towns and cities’ stores stocked."
The Institute is also excited by proposals in the Government’s Ambitions for cycling briefing paper to build a cycleway along some of the route of the High Speed 2 rail line. The Government will be investigating how existing footpaths or cycle tracks could be joined up or upgraded to create a single route between London, Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester. The Institute believes any new part of a new HS2 cycle-lane, already being dubbed ‘Slow Speed 2’, which runs alongside the new route, will certainly benefit from the gentle gradients used on railway routes and promote leisure cycling activities.