Walton Bridge Cycle links
Today I was interviewed by BBC Surrey about the new Cycle facilities that are being built leading to Walton Bridge.
My objections to the scheme have not really changed from the time of the consultation and I hope I articulated them clearly.
Surrey has planned a series of shared use pavement cycle facilities, shared with pedestrians, that are narrow, stop at every junction and require cyclists to cross the main road multiple times to follow them. Surrey claim these are high quality following best practice from the Dutch. On the Surrey website you can see some pictures, mostly of how they new facilities will make things worse for people on bikes and see Surrey gloss over that they are not building cycle paths at all but letting cyclists share the pavements.
One of the goals of the facilities is to reduce injuries amongst people on bikes. However when I spoke to the officers at the consultation they admitted they did not expect existing people on bikes to use them because Surrey conceded they were not of a high enough standard for existing cyclists. Given this it is hard to see how they will result in a casualty reduction.
Of course those people on bikes who do choose to use them will be put into conflict with pedestrians, putting both pedestrians and people on bikes in danger.
Those people on bikes who Surrey don’t expect to use the facilities and continue to use the road can look forward to even more animosity from a small, but significant minority of motorists who will use their vehicles to attempt to intimidate people on bikes off the road.
All in all Surrey are going to spend a large amount of a small cycling budget on a scheme that will make cycling, slower, more dangerous and less pleasant.