Monday, 10 September 2012

Preparing for the Bikes to Go West

On Sunday I met up with fellow blogger George (Two Wheels Good) and we took Boris bikes from Notting Hill down to the Fulham Road via Brompton Cemetery, then back through The Boltons and Kensington Gardens, eventually docking on Campden Hill. It was a warm afternoon, and cyclists were out in force.

"I love Boris Bikes": George of 'Two Wheels Good'
This area is right on the border of the current cycle hire area (some of it part of the mini western expansion to Westfield back in April). The 2013 expansion will, all being well, take in the rest of Kensington and Chelsea and push out to Hammemsith and Fulham. It is a beautiful part of London, and has some good streets for cycling. I have no doubt Boris bikes will prove popular in this part of west London.

K&C borough are currently consulting on increasing the permeability of more streets. Often it's as simple as adding an 'except cyclists' sign under an existing no entry sign. Bigger streets require a little more work, but it can be done. To maximise the benefits of cycle hire in K&C and elsewhere, this is an important development, allowing access to docks from both directions, and maximising the journeys which can be made by Boris bike, both in terms of shortening routes and avoiding busier roads.

It's easy to get your view to the borough, simply email

Iconic west London: St George's on Campden Hill
You could suggest individual streets, but I suggested a bolder set of principles: all smaller streets to be two-way by use of the 'except cyclists' sign; an ongoing programme of opening up larger streets starting with those most used by cyclists; all roads containing docking stations to be earmarked for immediate two-way access.

The expansion of cycle hire in K&C and beyond is good news, but we need infrastructure on the streets to allow as many people as possible, both experienced and novice cyclists, to get the most out of it.

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