The amount of protected cycling infrastructure throughout London has doubled in the three years since Sadiq Khan arrived in office in May 2016.
The Mayor of London described it as a ‘major delivery milestone’ in enabling more cycling in the capital.
Giving the keynote address at the London walking and cycling conference at the Guildhall today, he announced that 116 kilometres of protected cycle lanes are now complete or under construction in London, an increase on the 53 kilometres of protected cycle infrastructure that was in place when he became Mayor.
In his speech to key policymakers, the Mayor said progress on cycling infrastructure was a ‘Tale of Two Cities’, as he praised the work of councils like Enfield, Hackney, Camden, Waltham Forest and the City of London Corporation in building ‘high-quality’ cycling and walking infrastructure. He said that with the support from those boroughs ‘who share our vision’, he was on course to meet the commitment he made to London Cycling Campaign to treble the amount of protected space delivered for cycling across the capital by May 2020.
The Mayor reiterated his commitment to TfL’s new ‘quality criteria’ saying TfL will not build or fund new routes that aren’t ‘up to scratch’. This follows confirmation that TfL will move away from Quietway and Superhighway branding to new ‘cycleways’, which will be ‘high-quality’ routes ‘for cyclists of all ages, all abilities and from all walks of life’. The Mayor has increased funding for ‘Healthy Streets’ funding in TfL’s last business plan from £2.2 billion to more than £2.3 billion.
Khan said: “I said before the election that I wanted to increase the pace of change building new cycling infrastructure. I’m delighted that in just three years we have achieved more than the last Mayor did in eight years, already doubling the number of protected cycle routes on streets across London. I want to now deliver even more high-quality cycling and walking infrastructure across all parts of the capital, but even with record investment from the TfL, we can’t achieve that on our own. Boroughs across London must recognise the huge benefits of getting more people out of their cars and cycling as part of their everyday routine – getting more people active, improving their health, and reducing the air pollution on our streets which causes so much harm.”
The Mayor and TfL have today also confirmed the completion this week of vital improvements around Bloomsbury and St Pancras, with TfL and Camden Council having completed the transformation of the junction at Euston Road, Judd Street and Midland Road, providing safety benefits for people walking and cycling, with new pedestrian crossings and protected space for people on bikes. The improvements include new crossings, the closure of Judd Street to motor traffic at the Euston Road junction, and new segregated cycle tracks that fill in the ‘missing link’ for safe cycling between Cycleway Superhighway 6 (King’s Cross to Elephant and Castle) and Royal College Street, Camden and Kentish Town.
Councillor Feryal Demirci, deputy mayor of Hackney, said: “Hackney has higher cycling rates than any other borough in London, but we need to make cycling even more accessible for everyone across the capital. One of the most important ways we can do that is by introducing more protected cycle routes that make it easier for people to start. I welcome the Mayor of London’s announcement today.”
Councillor Adam Harrison, cabinet member for a Sustainable Camden, said: “The heart of our new Camden Transport Strategy is to encourage healthy, active travel and providing better access around the borough and beyond. Our aim is to increase the level of walking, cycling and public transport use and also reduce car dependency in order to address the urgent problems of congestion, road danger, poor air quality, carbon emissions and climate change, through a ‘Healthy Streets’ approach. The Judd Street/Midland Road project is a good example of the strategy in practice and also the benefits of our joint working with Transport for London.”