Croydon Council has revealed a series of cycle routes to get people out of their cars and onto a bike.
The map outlines where Croydon’s proposed cycle routes would be implemented over the next five years. By 2022, Croydon could have a network of “quietway” cycle routes across the borough. This plan extends along the route of the A23 between Purley and Coulsdon where a segregated cycle “highway” could be built. As it stands, only around one per cent of Croydon’s population cycle for at least 30 minutes five times a week according to Croydon Council’s draft cycling strategy. It says “only one per cent of Croydon residents regularly cycle compared to two per cent in outer London and three per cent across London as a whole. Croydon residents also have relatively low cycle ownership.”
Addiscombe Cycling Club’s general secretary Phil Hawkes said without knowing the “types” of proposed routes it was hard to comment as “badly designed cycle lanes can actually create danger and conflict.” He said: “Getting more people to use cycling is clearly a worthy aim – to reduce traffic, pollution and improve fitness. However, a lot of cycle lanes in the area are currently poorly designed and even encourage riders to cycle into dangerous situations (for example on the left-hand side of traffic that may be turning left). There are also ‘shared-use’ paths which create conflict with pedestrians. Narrow cycle lanes (such as on the Brighton Road to the South of Purley) encourage drivers to pass cyclists more closely than the Highway Code would suggest for a road without a cycle lane at all. As a club, we want users of all forms of transport to be able to use the roads safely and in accordance with the Highway Code.”
To pay for the new infrastructure, part of the proposed strategy suggested that “consideration be given to increasing the funding allocation from the Local Implementation Plan.” So far £480,000 of Section 106 funding has already been drawn down to deliver cycle infrastructure. “The intention is to continue this to support delivery of the programme associated with the draft Cycle Strategy,” the strategy said. If a report undertaken by the Transport for London proves to be right, then there is quite a bit of room for improvement for the two-wheeled community. “An analysis of the potential for cycling based on an assessment of the number of cyclable trips (has been done),” the report said. “This indicates that Croydon as a borough has the highest potential for cycling of all London boroughs with 400,000 daily cycle trips that could be made by residents. Currently only 6,000 daily cycle trips are made.”