Cycle spending in London triples over next 10 years

Cycle Strategy for London
Cycle Strategy for London

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, has today announced plans to spend £913m over the next 10 years to make London more cycle-friendly.

The strategy is called The Mayor’s Vision for Cycling in London [PDF], and lays out plans for an ambitious increase in spending on cycling infrastructure, including a segregated east-west cycle route stretching over 15 miles through the centre of the city.

It’s being described in the press as bold thinking that could change the future of London cycling, and it seems to be closest that anywhere in the UK has got to emulating the attitude to cycling that exists in Copenhagen and Amsterdam.

One particular thing which caught my eye, in the introduction given by Boris Johnson, was the vision to ‘normalise’ cycling:

I want cycling to be normal, a part of everyday life. I want it to be something you feel comfortable doing in your ordinary clothes, something you hardly think about. I want more women cycling, more older people cycling, more black and minority ethnic Londoners cycling, more cyclists of all social backgrounds – without which truly mass participation can never come.

It’s this kind of thinking and investment that we need in Dublin. We need alter the perception that cycling is a sport (and needs to be fast), and that cycling is dangerous (and needs helmets and high-vis clothing), and reposition cycling as a normal everyday activity – just like walking – that doesn’t require a load of specialist gear.

Richard Bloomfield

Richard is the founder of Dublin Bike Blog. He commutes to work every day by bike, come rain or shine, on his Dutch city bike. You can read more from Richard on his blog richardbloomfield.ie.

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