London Cycling Campaign's Infrastructure Campaigner, Waltham Forest Cycling Campaign's Council Liaison Officer, dad, mountain biker, vegetarian, hip-hop fiend, weirdo
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As ever, I think the reality is far more complex than folks accept.
- BoJo & Gilligan, like then or loathe them, flipping delivered from a standing start following the 2012 election (not the 2008 one obviously - blue paint). And Gilligan managed to deliver London's first truly high quality schemes in some very unexpected places. This should not be contested.
- That said, come on, idea Sadiq has done sod all? Is incontorvertibly rubbish. He was on track to triple the mileage of protected space in one term that Boris delivered in one term - ie he hit a run rate of double Boris'. But he didn't just do that. He actually ended his first term with 5x more cycle tracks than there were before. He's also got, during the crisis/Streetspace, more boroughs doing more cycle schemes than we've ever had before. That's obviously not all him, but it is under his watch. Lambeth, Islington particularly obvious, but Hounslow, Southwark etc. also. And who ever thought Harrow, Ealing, Wandsworth, Tower Hamlets etc would try to do as much as they did.
- Issue is now we've seen some faltering backsteps from many boroughs. That is IMO partly Gilligan to blame - across England we've seen councils weak on active travel fail to deliver during crisis or pulling stuff out. There should have been far more clarity upfront about need for engagement and political leadership (not Gilligan's style IMO - he's a 'just do it' kinda guy), and far more work with boroughs who were wobbly, but also far clearer on cost of inaction to boroughs. That stuff only now coming in - too late. And it'll take work from Sadiq, Will Norman, to fix those issues.
- As per my thread @Backstop mentions, yup, there are some real issues IMO with Sadiq's time. I think there's been far too little laser focus on boroughs to deliver - loads of them making weak excuses to delay schemes. But more, there are some real issues moving forward schemes with every stakeholder just holding vetoes. Not just TfL Buses, although they do appear to be an issue alongside TfL "Network Assurance" - both of whom seem invested in focusing heavily on small delays caused in modelling by cycling schemes while ignoring huge delays from 'too many cars' etc. But they're far from lone culprits or even possibly main ones. Everyone gets a veto - Canary Wharf, Port of London Authority, Royal Parks, Crown Estates Paving Commission, hospital trusts, landowners, developers, councillors, business associations - in 6 years at LCC I've faced 'em all. My big question here is why does Sadiq talk big on zero carbon 2030 now and then, or on VisionZero, then immediately duck for cover after. There's no real staying power on these issues. That's the big problem. Boris made cycling his big thing. Sadiq hasn't got one thing. Now, that could mean he's achieving more across board. But it feels he's spread thing. After all, if you can't focus fully on climate as London's Mayor...? Anyway, last point is to say that Boris seemed to have some more success on quietening the angry anti-cycling stakeholders that he also faced. But even there, there's a question over whether he delivered more as a result or whether he actually traumatised a bunch of councils and Will/Sadiq's more emolient approach was paying longer term dividends.
Just my rambling thoughts on issue that's far far far more complex IMO than Sadiq bad, Johnson good, or vice versa.
- There's not much in UK study, although there's a good quote from Gilligan when he launched the Enfield mini-Holland schemes that he went looking for studies and he couldn't find a single example where reducing traffic, putting in bike lanes etc. caused long-term decline, quite the opposite.
- There's loads of US examples. Just do a quick google.
- That said, British folks tend to be incredibly hyperlocal about stuff. When the modal filters were going in in Walthamstow, then no evidence from Hackney counted, let alone Groningen, Utrecht, Barcelona etc. Even when I found old filter cells in Walthamstow and Leyton, the cry was still "well, they're the right, good ones" - so older = OK.
- Given this, I wouldn't try too hard - anyone determined to hate cycling schemes or in favour of easing parking restrictions won't listen to any studies or data from even the next road over. What is more achievable however is to ask them if they actually have surveyed and carefully identified parking need. Look at the Lea Bridge Road parking survey results on Enjoy Waltham Forest site - they went and asked businesses what proportion of customers arrived by car, then asked customers (massive disparity), but also then went back and checked who was using the parking spaces - it was the business owners, parked up for the day very often.
Short URL for CS4...
And for CS9...
Please do take a few minutes to fill bopth out. It's vital we show lots of support for what are good schemes!
Quick two minute take from us at LCC on what to raise in the consultation. Please do everyone fill out a response - it is getting some stick locally. Same deal with CS4...
Keep meaning to check LFGSS more regularly. But here goes (I'm LCC's Infrastructure Campaigner):
a) Yes, Westminster. Grrr.
b) This is an "interim" scheme and should have been more clearly labelled as such from the get-go. TfL still working hard on trying to get in a better scheme asap. Issue is that signalising this basically sends their computer models for traffic for whole of area into meltdown.
c) I'm with those who would basically say "so what?" Sadly, I don't run London. TfL Buses basically do.
d) The folks working on the final scheme are good. I have some hopes. I'll continue to push them.
A quick message to ask every single person on here to not just #signforcycling with the London Cycling Campaign, but get friends, relatives, family, strangers to also!
We’re asking the next Mayor to commit to:
More space for cycling on main roads and at junctions
A ‘Mini-Holland’ for every London borough
An end to lorry danger
We need loads of people to sign, because as you can see, some of the candidates are no feeling pressure to push on with more of the welcome infrastructure we're only just beginning to see go in. In fact, some of them may want to rip out the stuff we've fought so hard to get!
So we really need your support to make sure the momentum is kept up. More on the detail of the pledges at the site signforcycling.org