Thursday, 29 March 2012

Mayoral Election - candidates reveal policies on Boris bikes

Cycling is becoming a major issue in the mayoral election, largely thanks to the Times 'Cities Fit for Cycling' campaign. Ken Livingstone is the latest to reveal his priorities (in an article which also helpfully compares the policies f the 4 leading candidates). On Boris bikes, he wants to widen access, extend the bikes to new parts of London, and get better value for money. These are all laudable aims, but I think tough to deliver. There have been a number of articles recently lamenting the fact that councils are having to chip in to fund the bikes. But I'd argue in the opposite direction - cycle hire is a new form of sustainable public transport in London, available at a low price to Londoners. I would actively encourage TfL and the boroughs to invest in the scheme, which will help to relieve congestion and pollution in the capital. Compared to major schemes like Thameslink and Crossrail (both of which are also worth investing in) cycle hire costs a tiny sum. So my message to Ken - yes, extend the bikes to new areas, and of course they need more users, but a good scheme costs money, and is worth investing in.

Plenty more information on cycling and the mayoral eelction is available from Londoners on Bikes.

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