Sunday 21 November 2010

New infrastructure in Hackney Wick

Freewheeler highlighted Hackney LCC's philosophy on cycle lanes, in one of his posts.

"In Hackney, however, the local LCC group abhors cycle lanes:

for years our approach has been to reject tokenistic devices such as "cycle lanes" (have you noticed the absence of grit-strewn dooring lanes in Hackney, as compared to neighbouring boroughs?), in preference to engineering that reduces motor traffic speeds, opens up route choices for cycle traffic through increased permeability, and improves the streetscape in general, especially for pedestrians."

I have to inform them that, despite their efforts, they have been invaded by the crap infrastructure pixies anyway. Maybe the pixie army that is doing sterling work in Waltham Forest by providing all manner of dangerous and useless cycle lanes are now moonlighting across the River Lee. Who knows?

I think this short cycle lane is intended to allow take cyclists to the new crossing which leads to a shared path over the A12. Which sounds admirable, if only the cycle lane didn't have the crossing lights situated squarely in the centre of it.

They could have continued the drop kerb past the lights and extended the crossing width to accommodate the cyclist. Instead the cyclist presumably is supposed to navigate between the wall and the light pole - a gap that can barely fit a cycle through, even less allow pedestrians and cycles to use the facility without conflict.

A potentially nice idea to make turning into the shared path a bit easier is utterly ruined by some idiotic positioning of street furniture and complete lack of thought as to how cyclists should use the facility. It gets to the point where one has to wonder if local councils are doing this on purpose.

So, I am afraid to inform Hackney LCC that their strategy of rejecting token cycle lanes appears to be no barrier for Hackney council. Welcome to the world of Walthamizing.

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