How to car-proof cycle lanes

Spotted this morning off Gower Street, London.

Chapel Street, Lancaster, anyone?


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Work on Morecambe promenade

Work starts this month on the flood wall on Morecambe promenade.  It will be a long job – 18 months in the first instance.  The contractors will only be working on short 100-metre strips at a time. Cyclists will share with pedestrians a narrow corridor protected with plastic bollards and will need to dismount.  Those choosing to use the road, which is considerably narrowed, will have the ‘protection’ of a reduced 20 mph zone.

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New path in Galgate

A new shared-use path in Galgate will open shortly – a very short stretch to link Leach House Lane (off Highland Brow) to the A6 opposite Hazelrigg Lane.  This will allow pedestrians and cyclists access from west Galgate to Lancaster University on a properly surfaced path.  Financial assistance came from Lancaster University’s Community Benefits Fund.

(In response to a request for a map of the route – well, that’s a bit beyond my capabilities, but here’s a document with a map and the bit of path circled.  It’s a very short stretch of newly surfaced path joining an existing bridleway to the A6, where there is already a crossing over to Lancaster University.)


Posted in Galgate, shared-use paths | Tagged | 1 Comment

Comments on Bolton-le-Sands planning application

A planning application has been received to build 30 homes beside the canal towpath in Bolton-le-Sands.  From a cycling and walking perspective, Dynamo has made the following objection:

We wish to object to the current plan on the grounds that it does not provide adequate cyclist and pedestrian access to the canal towpath.

It appears that the plan has only one access route onto the towpath for cyclists and pedestrians. This means that, for example, residents at no. 29 would have to make a long detour to reach the towpath to go towards Carnforth. There should be access points at BOTH ends of this strung-out development to facilitate and promote walking and cycling in line with the County Council’s sustainable transport policy.

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Dynamo’s comments on horses on Lancaster-Morecambe greenway

Morecambe Town Council is due to discuss the subject of horses on the greenway later this month.  After consultation, Dynamo has sent the following comments:

Dynamo (Lancaster & District Cycle Campaign) sought members’ views about whether it was a good idea for horses to be able to share the path with cyclists and walkers, and we would like to pass on a summary of these to the Town Council.

Some comments were not favourable to the idea and reasons given were:

* the path is heavily used as a commuter route at many times of the day, and is generally busier than other shared-use paths in the district;

* horses are large (taking up half the path) and can be intimidating;

* they may be spooked by dogs or cyclists;

* they leave dung;

* their hooves may damage the path;

but other comments were more sympathetic, with an awareness of the limited routes available to horse-riders and the danger they face on some roads. However, allowing horses would require investment to make the proposal practicable and safe for all users.

A further consideration was that Dynamo has campaigned for an off-road route between Heysham and Lancaster, joining the existing greenway at Salt Ayre. This proposal has been taken up by the County Council and included in its draft Transport Masterplan for North Lancashire. The Heysham route would be open to cyclists, walkers and horses, so perhaps a way could be found to accommodate horse-riders between, say, Salt Ayre and Morecambe?

In conclusion, Dynamo is clear that permitting horses on the greenway must be dependent on increasing the capacity of the path – by, for example, providing a separate grassy or sandy section parallel to the surfaced path. (The model here could be part of the Lancaster-Caton path.)

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Latest news on Lancaster safety improvements

Dynamo has been pressing Lancashire County Council for action to reduce pedestrian and cycle deaths and serious injuries, following the release of worrying casualty figures in 2013 and 2014. We met with the County Road and Transport Safety Manager at the end of March 2015 to visit the locations of accidents to pedestrians and cyclists in the city centre and south of town. Despite near-term solutions being identified, including remodelling of junctions, keep clear markings, improved marking of existing cycle lanes and better signage, a lack of progress in implementing these prompted us to call a further meeting at the end of October, to include County Councillor John Fillis, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport.

The council has now committed to completing the lining and signing works before Christmas and will update us on the plans for junction improvements within the next few weeks. These changes are relatively inexpensive but can save lives and serious injuries.

Watch this space.

Posted in A6, safety | Tagged | 1 Comment

Update on St Peter’s Road, Lancaster

After consultation, it looks as if Lancashire County Council have decided against blocking up the end of St Peter’s Road where it joins Moor Lane.  Their latest plan is to extend the kerb to allow for greater visibility, which Dynamo objects to on the grounds that it narrows the carriageway and forces cyclists further into the road.

As an aside, it was interesting to note from the crash descriptions that the cyclists in greatest danger are those going straight down Moor Lane and over the canal bridge – and that from cars turning into or out of St Peter’s Road.

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