Sign this petition to keep the Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes!

Sign this petition to keep the Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes extension!

We are at risk of losing these lanes unless we show support. Sign now and share widely.

IMG_3477The temporary cycle lanes were put in place on the A270 as an urgent measure in line with statutory guidance issued by the government. They extend from the Drive to the Hangleton Road junction. They’re not perfect, but they are enabling more cycling, more social distancing and it’s much better now with the lanes, than it was without them.

IMG_9525Traffic goes fast on the A270 and it is used by HGVs. We need a City-wide cycling network and links with neighbouring authorities so that people feel safer to ride.

 

Brighton seafront road closed to motor traffic

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Now with traffic reduced to 1955 levels due to the Covid lockdown, Brighton and Hove City Council has closed Madeira Drive to motor traffic. This road is right next to the sea and stretches east from Brighton Pier.  Conditions for cycling and walking are perfect and people are enjoying the freedom of the wide new traffic-free space.

 

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Barriers to cycling must be removed!

2020-01-27 ETS committee (2)We’ve told Brighton and Hove City Council that the gates appearing in Brighton must be removed and a better solution applied that doesn’t prevent cycling. 

Our Campaigns Officer made the case at the Environment, Transport and Sustainability committee in January.

Our deputation with text and photos is here.

See the webcast. The relevant bit starts at 0:24:00.

The gate below is at the junction of Natal Road and Dewe Road near the University of Brighton’s campus on the Lewes Road. It is permanently locked. No consultation was carried out on its placement. Not good enough!

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Election Hustings – The Future of Transport in Brighton & Hove

On Thursday April 25th, starts promptly at 7.30 pm till 9.00 pm at Brighthelm Centre, North Road, Brighton BN1 1YD. Arrive from 7 pm for tea and coffee.

Join us at a local elections hustings on transport. This is your opportunity to find out more about where the different political parties stand on local transport issues. We have invited representatives from the four main parties. Sustainable transport expert Stephen Joseph OBE will be speaking about how healthy, active and sustainable local transport has been delivered across the UK. See our Facebook page (search for Bricycles) and look for events or click: https://www.facebook.com/events/593760521098327/

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Labour MPs and Green Councillors turn out for our Space for Cycling ride

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Stephen Morgan MP rides a BTN Bike Share bike on the ride.

Our Space for Cycling ride at the Labour Conference was a great success!

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In front, holding flags from left to right: Stephen Morgan MP, Andy McDonald MP, Fabian Hamilton MP, Tom Guha of Cycling UK and Becky Reynolds of Bricycles

Shadow Secretary of State for Transport, Andy McDonald MP for Middlesbrough, made a pledge to increase funding to £10 per person per year for cycling and walking if a Labour government were elected.

Many thanks to Andy for coming and also to Stephen Morgan MP for Portsmouth South and Fabian Hamilton MP for Leeds North East (below).

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Fabian Hamilton MP with a BTN Bike Share bike.

We were also very glad to welcome two Brighton and Hove City Councillors who arrived on bikes, both from the Green Party: Councillor Alex Phillips and Councillor Dick Page.  

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Veteran Labour MP Dennis Skinner also stopped by for a chat!

Many thanks to Tom Guha from Cycling UK for arranging the speakers. Cycling UK’s press release here.

 

Brighton Bike Share launches today!

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We’re up and running! Paul of South Coast Bikes delivered the BTN Bike Share bikes to their seafront locations and to many other points around the town. Starting from September 1st, these handy bikes will be available for hire. See BTN Bike Share for all the details. See the Council news release. Happy cycling!

What might a safer Elm Grove junction look like?

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When I was collecting signatures for my petition about the road crash hotspot at the bottom of Elm Grove, a few people asked how redesigning the road could improve safety. How different could it really be?

Following the council’s invitation to submit ideas for their forthcoming review of this junction, I got together with a few friends and we have come up with two options for a safer junction, plus some other ideas to think about. I’ll be emailing all these ideas to the council’s Travel Planning team tomorrow, just in time for their 1st November deadline.

If you think these are good suggestions, there’s still time for you to drop them a line to say so – feel free to link to this blog post if you want to. Or, of course, send in your own thoughts about what’s wrong with the junction and how it could be…

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Council bits & pieces

It has been a packed week for the council as ever, with a few bike related things floating to the surface.

Last Wednesday the road safety team held an exchanging places event, where cyclists get to swap with bus drivers to see what the other experiences. Anyone hoping that this would involve Stagecoach drivers being put on bikes and chased up North Street by a Deliveroo cycle courier behind the wheel of the number 49 will have  been disappointed, as the main thrust of this sort of thing is that cyclists sit in the driving seat of a large vehicle to better experience all the things that the driver cannot see, and through this process understand how they may be squashed without the driver noticing. And what they might do about it.

Found this cartoon by @beztweets which I think I will just leave here for a bit…

Being autumn, the council road safety team are also running their annual Be Seen – Be Bright awareness campaign reminding people walking and cycling about the advent of winter and the importance of being seen in the dark. They will be out and about advising cyclists to get lit, and if you head to their facebook page there is the chance to enter a draw to win some lights.

The big council news of the week has been the resuscitation of the Valley Gardens Scheme – a proposal aiming to improve the stretch between the Aquarium roundabout and the Level, which involves shifting private vehicle movements to the eastern side of the gardens, simplifying the crossings and leaving the western side just for public transport and access.

The scheme has been on the cards for years, but was substantially developed by the last council. When the change of administration happened in 2015, the new administration called a pause because they wanted to review the scheme – particular the traffic modelling, and this done, it is now back on track. this is a good thing, as it promises to provide high quality protected cycle routes along the north south length, as well as improved east west connections.

The final scheme has not yet been announced, and some consultation is still taking place, and Bricycles continue to participate in this and be represented as opportunities arise. The word from Tony, who has been attending consultation events is that it looks good for cyclists, although there are some aspects of the design that may require tweaking. watch this space.

And finally….another award for the Lewes Road scheme. Last Friday, the council Transport Team celebrated scooping first place as Transport Local Authority of the Year in the National Transport Awards. Congrats to the council and hoping that this inspires them to continue developing safe and accessible transport options for all.

Elm Grove Junction Update

“The message that everyone is trying to kill you outweighs some croissants from the Mayor on Cycle to Work day.”

Essential reading of the week is Dani Ahrens powerful and pertinent summary of the last leg in the journey of the petition which she started to seek improvements at the Elm grove Junction. The quote above is from the speech she made to the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee last week, and the full submission and her commentary can be found on her blog HERE

The response from the council to her petition of 781 signatures wanting improvements at this junction was – on the face of it – promising, with the council announcing that the junction will receive an upgrade in 2016/17,  but as the only detail given was the possibility of cycle advance signals, the suspicion is that the key problems with the junction will remain untouched. A suspicion backed up by another council ambition to “improve the efficiency of the junction” – some thing which Dani points out in her blog, can be a counter productive priority;

“I think it’s more important to make the road safer for people on bikes and on foot. In the long run, making roads feel safer for people travelling by bike is the best way to improve the efficiency of the road system. But the changes necessary to do that can’t be made if they have to happen without altering the existing capacity of junctions and roads to accommodate motor traffic.”

Also Dani is concerned that the suggestions made in her petition – for example introduction of a simultaneous green light phase for cyclists – have not been responded to, which may indicate that the council are reluctant to look beyond the limited palette of standard response to consider something more innovative or imaginative.

Whilst the council warn that they are working on a very tight schedule for this, and don’t have time or resources for a wide ranging consultation, they do invite contributions, and  if anyone would like to put forward suggestions then they are very welcome to do so by emailing Travel.Planning@brighton-hove.gov.uk. by November 1st.

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Brighton and Hove City Council signs up to Space for Cycling

IMG_2288ed2Great news! We are delighted that Brighton and Hove City Council have voted to support CTC’s Space for Cycling campaign. There was agreement at the Environment Transport and Sustainability committee on November 25th 2015 to ask Brighton and Hove’s Chief Executive Officer to sign the council up to the initiative. 20140514 - SpaceforCyclingcroppedThis shows admirable unity of purpose between the Labour Chair of the committee, Councillor Gill Mitchell and the Green Group, led by Councillor Pete West, who tabled the motion. Bricycles has been promoting Space for Cycling since the start of the campaign led nationally by the cycling charity CTC. We now hope to see a continued and renewed focus at local level on the remaining barriers to cycling, particularly dealing with busy roads and dangerous junctions.

CTC’s blog on this and the Autumn Spending Review

Space for Cycling has 6 themes:

  1. Protected space on main roads
  2. Removing through motor traffic in residential areas
  3. Lower speed limits
  4. Cycle-friendly town centres
  5. Safe routes to school
  6. Routes through green spaces

More information here on what Space for Cycling means.