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'Crossrail for the bike' plans revealed

Words: Sam Waddicor

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has unveiled plans to build Europe’s longest substantially-segregated urban cycleway, with two routes across London.

As part of his £913 million commitment to getting Londoners cycling more, the mayor has unveiled plans for a three-mile north to south route, as well as an 18 mile east to west route.

The routes will run from King’s Cross in the north to Elephant and Castle in the south, and from Barking in the east to Acton in the west. Along the route there are plans to make the cycleways as safe and segregated as possible, including a separate lane on the Westway flyover where a section of the proposed Barking to Acton route will runs.

There are also plans to tackle specifically targeted danger junctions, including Parliament Square and Tower Hill, by creating protected cycle routes through them.

The new routes will connect with existing cycleways to create the long continuous lanes that the mayor is aiming to deliver.

“Bikes already make up 24 per cent of all rush-hour traffic in central London – hundreds of thousands of journeys every day that would otherwise be made by car or public transport. Because this isn’t just about cyclists. Getting more people on to their bikes will reduce pressure on the road, bus and rail networks, cut pollution, and improve life for everyone, whether or not they cycle themselves,” said Johnson.

The managing director of surface transport at TfL, Leon Daniels, said: “Cycling in London is becoming more popular by the day and these new Cycle Superhighways will further transform London into a continental cycle-tropolis for riders of all ages. We will be working hard in the coming months to ensure that these schemes can be delivered as quickly as possible, while balancing the needs of all road users and look forward to hearing the views from Londoners and visitors to the city about these transformational plans.”

British Cycling’s campaigns manager, Martin Key, added: “Continuous segregated routes have proved hugely successful in Holland and are an affordable transport solution for cities. This cycleway will attract new people to cycling – young and old – because they will feel safer and more confident using a convenient route. London is leading the way on cycling and the rest of UK must follow.”

The public consultation began this week with work due to start early 2015 and routes opening March 2016.

Read the consultation on the North- South Cycle Superhighway 

Read the consultation on the East-West Cycle Superhighway