The Freight Transport Association (FTA) says the Mayor of London’s proposals for major new bike routes across the capital must consider the impact on all road users.
Consultation begins this week on a package of cycling, pedestrian and road improvements designed to reflect the fact that cycling in central London has trebled in 15 years and the number of people commuting by bike will soon overtake the number in cars.
Among the proposals are plans to allow cyclists to travel on segregated tracks or low-traffic roads from Acton and Swiss Cottage to central London, Elephant and Castle and Canary Wharf.
The FTA supports the principle of safe, segregated bike routes – both to improve safety for cyclists and to encourage car users to switch to bikes – but this must balance the needs of all road users.
The FTA’s Natalie Chapman said: “These schemes must be well thought out so they not only serve London today, but for decades to come.
“We are already seeing massive delays on Lower Thames Street due to the construction of the East-West Cycle Superhighway. This is resulting in some companies putting more vans and lorries on London’s roads to deliver the same quantity of goods, either to comply with the maximum shifts required under EU Drivers’ Hours rules or to maintain customer service levels.
“This is not good for emissions, congestion, transport costs or indeed safety. And this is not a temporary situation – the loss of capacity will be permanent.”
The new cycling schemes currently under construction were rushed through and the FTA is calling on the next Mayor of London to work with the freight industry and the businesses it serves to ensure that future schemes are better planned for the benefit of all road users.
The consultation runs until 20 March and full details can be seen at https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk.