Work has started on two more Barclays Cycle Superhighways in London, following the success of the pilot routes from Merton to the City and Barking to Tower Gateway.
The new routes, which are due to launch next summer, will stretch from Wandsworth to Westminster and Bow to Adlgate. The idea is that they will give cyclists clearly marked, direct and continuous routes into central London, making it easier and safer to commute by bike.
As well as marking out wide (at least 1.5m) blue cycle lanes, efforts will be made to make junctions safer – through the provision of Advanced Stop Lines, Trixi mirrors (subject to a successful pilot), traffic signal upgrades and road modifications, including the possible removal of left-turn slip roads.
Particular attention will be paid to troublespots like Bow Roundabout and the busy junctions of Battersea Park Road and Queenstown Road, and Cambridge Heath Road and Whitechapel Road.
Transport for London say they are also intending to introduce "mandatory cycle lanes wherever possible" – that's lanes that it's mandatory for motorists to stay out of, not for cyclists to use – including along 25 percent of the Wandsworth to Westminster route.
Work started yesterday, with preparatory work in Mile End Road on the Bow to Aldgate route ahead of resurfacing, and kerb improvements at Armoury Way on the Wandsworth to Westminster route.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: “The two pilot Superhighways routes are abuzz with cyclists following the blue lanes to get to and from work each day. These two new routes are set to give thousands more Londoners a taste of commuting by bicycle. The Superhighways are a fantastically visual reminder to all road users, not just cyclists, that London embraces cycling as an integral cog in its machine."
Transport for London figures suggest that cycling on the original Superhighway routes has increased by an average of 25 percent since they opened on 19 July, rising to 90 percent on sections of the Merton route. In total, 12 Superhighways are due to be built.