Ambitious plans by the mayor who brought a city-wide network of bike-sharing stations to this traffic-chocked metropolis will see a continuous 15-mile, two-way cycling lane crossing the heart of London.
In welcome news for cyclists, nearly £1-billion will be spent by the city over the next decade in a number of initatives to get Europe’s largest city addicted to pedal-power, the most impressive being what will be Europe’s longest near-continuous, segregated cycle route in any European city. Part of the cycle route will be built along a two-mile strech of an elevated motorway, reducing the number of lanes available to car traffic from 6 to 5.
Mayor Boris Johnson told the press: “The Westway, the ultimate symbol of how the urban motorway tore up our cities, will be become the ultimate symbol of how we are claiming central London for the bike.”
He added: “I want to de-lacrafy cycling. I want to make it normal, something for everyone, something you feel comfortable doing in ordinary clothes.”
The city is also planning to:
- build a two-way bike lane between the iconic Big Ben and Blackfriars, located in the “city” financial district.
- ban lorries and large transport vehicles from the centre unless they are fitted with safety sensors.
- create ”quietway” routes on residential streets that follow key underground or bus routes
- introduce Dutch-style cycling infrastructure in three London boroughs
UPDATE (Jan 03, 2013): Norman Foster’s elevated “SkyCycle” route through London: Read article from the Guardian newspaper