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18 June 2019

Painted lanes ‘a waste of money’, say UK cycling champions

First publishedon www.ITSInternational.com

The UK government has wasted hundreds of millions of pounds painting white lines on busy roads to use as cycle lanes, says former Olympic cyclist Chris Boardman.

Boardman, cycling and walking commissioner for Greater Manchester, has reportedly joined fellow commissioners Dame Sarah Storey (Sheffield City region) and Will Norman (London) in writing to transport secretary Chris Grayling calling for new measures to be adopted.

The Guardian says the letter argues that painted cycle lanes do not make cyclists feel safe.

“As there are currently no national minimum safety standards for walking and cycling infrastructure, these practices can and will continue wasting public money and failing to persuade people to change their travel habits,” the letter says.

The three cycling champions are urging the Department for Transport to focus on efficient use of road space and total people movement rather than capacity and journey times for vehicles.

They also want local areas to fund road danger reduction measures by retaining revenue from fixed penalty notices issued for traffic and motoring offences such as speeding or driving without insurance.

Additionally, the commissioners are calling on the government to review guidance on walking speeds to help local authorities seeking to extend pedestrian crossing times at signalised junctions.

Boardman is quoted as saying: “It’s tragic that hundreds of millions of pounds of government money has been spent on substandard cycling and walking infrastructure. If national government were to adopt these asks we’d be on a winning streak and could truly transform Britain’s towns and cities, not to mention massively improving air quality and health.”

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