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CYCLE LANE MADNESS


over the next few weeks. If these are proposed for your community, you need to act quickly and take part in whatever protests are going on.


Brace yourselves, Mancunians… there’s more cycle lane madness on the way. The combined authority has received confirmation that its £3.1million bid in the first round of the emergency active travel fund has been successful.


New walking and cycling zones, pedestrian crossings and “filtered neighbourhoods” are also among the scenes expected to be in place by October. The Manchester Evening News reports that a second tranche of government funding will also be made available for more permanent measures to cement walking and cycling habits in the future.


lanes was erected in such a way that it blocked access to an electric vehicle charge point. Classic planning, don’t you think?


But then that was the same community where five Brighton councillors criticised the setting up of a second cycle lane on the seafront for causing an “unacceptably difficult time” for the local taxi trade with unnecessary “mayhem and gridlock”. They said putting a cycle lane next to the existing one at the expense of a lane of traffic was “ideologically driven, poorly planned and totally unnecessary”.


Cllr Jackie O’Quinn, former chair of the Licensing Committee at Brighton and Hove City Council, said: “…Many taxi drivers were on the edge of despair as they fell through the holes in the net of many of the assistance schemes from the government. Finally lockdown ended and taxi drivers hoped for recovery, which looked likely until the double whammy of the closure of two lanes of the A259, [which is] an arterial road from east to west and as such it needs the traffic to run smoothly…


“Please don’t forget that our taxi drivers are a lifeline for the disabled and vulnerable and are also vital for the tourist trade… By all means have cycle lanes, but let’s use some common sense, consultation and compromise in order to establish where they can work best and without causing such conflict between drivers and cyclists and putting the city’s economic recovery at risk.”


Hear hear!


A newly installed cycle lane in Sheffield was slammed by motorists and a local Councillor for causing traffic chaos and stopping access to emergency vehicles. The new path between Shalesmoor round- about and Corporation Street was installed in early July and immediately attracted criticism.


Cllr Shaffaq Mohammed of Ecclesall ward posted a video of an emergency ambulance with its blue lights on, having to creep along the road as a paramedic ran alongside it to remove cones that were blocking its entry to the road. He said: “I’m all for cycling but some thought needs to go into this, because the road already has a cycle lane on both sides and a pretty wide pavement.”


That cycle lane has since been removed, as has a similar set-up in Altrincham in Greater Manchester. The latter was operative for less than 48 hours before it was taken away following vehement protests from local residents.


We told you about Dorset, Derby, Liverpool… but be warned: there are still schemes out there which are mooted to come to fruition


NOVEMBER 2020


All but two of Greater Manchester’s ten boroughs – Rochdale and Wigan – put forward projects for consideration. Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham can’t wait: he’s welcomed the government’s support of the wider plans to create more space for cyclists and pedestrians in the region.


Plans include temporary road closures, dozens of pop-up cycle lanes, reallocation of road space to pedestrians including a zebra crossing, cycle-only filter points and “quiet streets”.


This of course leads to the question: What loggerheads did the Mayor engage when told that Greater Manchester was being brought into Tier 3 lockdown measures last month? That argy-bargy was all about funding… and for the first time Mr Burnham actually mentioned the plight of the taxi and private hire trade in this region.


But speaking of funding, what about the two huge consultations that are taking place as we ‘speak’ amongst the ten Greater Manchester boroughs regarding Clean Air Zone charging and common minimum licensing standards? Why don’t they just pile it on, eh???!! You’ll see our major feature on the matter in this edition of PHTM.


ABOUT THAT PETITION


There is now a Parliamentary petition doing the rounds, calling for the removal of recent temporary traffic measures that are creating congestion. PHTM Facebook followers will have seen this announcement a couple of weeks ago. The petition was instigated and promoted last month by David Tarsh of Tarsh Consultants; within two days the number of signatures had exceeded the 10,000 signatures required for the Government to be obliged to respond; currently there are 22,880 signatures and rising by the day.


You can sign this petition at: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/552306


REMOVE GUIDANCE AND FUNDING FOR TEMPORARY TRAFFIC MEASURES THAT CAUSE CONGESTION The text of the petition includes:


“Road closures, ‘school streets’ and new cycle lanes are creating severe congestion, long traffic delays and severe frustra- tion across the country. Although well intentioned, the experiment has failed. Government guidance supporting such measures, and funds for them, should be withdrawn immediately.


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