Lancaster City Centre Square Routes project letter

Lancaster City Council is examining the future management of traffic within Lancaster’s pedestrian zone as part of its plans to revitalise the city centre.

On their website they say “very often, much of the zone is now too heavily used by vehicles, to the detriment of people’s experience and safety, including shoppers and other centre users. Now, as part of the Lancaster Square Routes project, the city council is looking at how traffic is managed within the centre with a view to potentially reducing vehicle access.”

We assume that when ‘vehicles’ and ‘traffic’ are mentioned they’re not really considering bicycles, but more the seemingly increasing number of lorries, vans and cars in the city centre. As such we’re hoping that this might be an opportunity to increase the possible routes for bikes across the centre, and have sent the following letter to the council:

Dear Councillor Hanson

Dynamo notes that the City Council is current examining the future management of traffic in the city’s pedestrian zone.

Could we suggest that the Council permits cycling in the city centre at the same time as delivery vehicles – i.e. before 9.30 a.m. and after 5 p.m. – for the proposed trial period? This would end the strange anomaly that one cannot legitimately cycle through the pedestrian area when is it largely quiet, and demonstrate if a permanent removal of the ban is feasible. We appreciate that there are new cycle lanes on the one-way system and these are very welcome, but the pedestrian zone out of hours remains a viable cycling route.

I am thinking in particular of a colleague who has recently started cycling to work from Morecambe to Lancaster University. She is perfectly happy from Morecambe to the Millennium Bridge, and from Aldcliffe Road canal towpath to the University, but the city centre fazes her. Allowing her, and others like her, to cycle through the pedestrian zone at 8.30 a.m. and back at 6.00 p.m. does not seem unreasonable.

We hope the project group will give serious consideration to this proposal.

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About lancasterdynamo

Dynamo is a cycling group, established in 1994, to work with official bodies, other cycling organisations and interested individuals to promote cycling as a safe, enjoyable and healthy means of transport.
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