The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced that over the next 5 years London will invest £770 million into various bicycling support programs, infrastructure, and initiatives — roughly doubling the amount spent on bicycling support by former mayor Boris Johnson.
The investment plan — part of the new Transport for London draft Business Plan (which runs up to 2021/2022) — is actually a fairly large increase over what the mayor outlined in his manifesto commitment.
£154 million a year in investment is quite a lot. It works out to around £17 for every person in the city — similar to the level of support offered by the Netherlands and Denmark. So, you’re probably wondering now: What will it actually be spent on?
According to Mayor Khan: “Our plans include consulting on 2 new Cycle Superhighways next year, in addition to a new East-West Route. And unlike the previous Mayor, we will continue to focus on how we can minimise disruption and congestion as we push ahead with the construction of new cycling infrastructure. With record amounts of money now committed for cycling in London, we will continue to work over the coming months developing further detailed plans for making cycling a safe and obvious choice for Londoners of all ages and backgrounds.”
The press release highlights some of the investments that we can expect:
“This new cycling budget, which will help achieve the target of 1.5 million cycle journeys per day by 2025/26, includes the completion of phase two of the North-South Cycle Superhighway from Farringdon to Kings Cross, which will begin construction next year. It also includes the extension of the East-West Cycle Superhighway from Lancaster Gate and work to deliver Cycle Superhighway 11 from Swiss Cottage to the West End, which the Mayor has given his endorsement for and next steps will be announced imminently.
“The Business Plan also confirms funding for two new Cycle Superhighways. Consultations will begin next year on Cycle Superhighway 4 from Tower Bridge to Greenwich and Cycle Superhighway 9 from Olympia towards Hounslow, with each route also tackling a number of traffic-dominated junctions. These new routes will open up even more of south-east and west London to cycling. The gaps in cycle routes left by the previous administration will also be looked into to make sure they usefully connect with each other, particularly in central London. Working with London boroughs, the three Mini Hollands in Enfield, Kingston and Waltham Forest and at least 20 more Quietway routes will be planned or rolled-out, making cycling safer and easier in different parts of London including Hammersmith, Finsbury Park, Croydon and Barking.”
There will also apparently be a new pedestrian and cyclist bridge installed to link Canary Wharf and Rotherhithe.
Further analysis will reportedly be undertaken to identify the links that will need to be developed to the realization of a comprehensive city-wide cycling network.
A final note: the Mayor will be appointing a new cycling and walking commissioner for the city soon, who will be tasked with working as an advocate for the two transportation modalities in the city. This position was apparently advertised openly and has involved a lengthy recruitment process.
Top photo via British Cycling