Mayor of London’s Cycle Hire launched


Mayor of London Boris Johnson launched the long awaited central London-wide cycle hire scheme on 30 July 2010.

This scheme, similar in concept to the Velib scheme in operation in Paris, allows for bikes to be hired easily for short periods of time to complete journeys in central London, for example travelling from Vauxhall station up to Oxford Street.

Bikes are available at several hire points in the Kennington/ Vauxhall area in the North of Lambeth and drop off / hire points will be available all over central London. Further information is available on the Transport for London website at www.tfl.gov.uk/cyclehire.

The pricing structure means that if you wish to use a bike for more than two/ three hours it may be more cost effective to hire a bike from a conventional bike hire shop (and you will get a more comfortable bike). Suppliers such as the Lambeth based London Bicycle Tour Company in Gabriels Wharf, SE1 www.londonbicycle.com offer a good selection of bikes for hire.
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Boris’ bikelanes go live

Cycle superhighway 7 map
Cycling Superhighway 7 Colliers Wood - Southwark Bridge route map

On Monday 19 July 2010 the first of the so called cycle superhighways promoted by the Mayor of London Boris Johnson went live in Lambeth amid much publicity.

Cycle superhighway logo
Cycle Superway 7, shown in the map above, starts in Colliers Wood, Merton and runs to Southwark Bridge passing along Clapham High Street in Lambeth then up Clapham Road to Elephant (the A3) before heading up Southwark Bridge Road to the river.

You will have seen the blue cycle lanes on the side of the road – these indicate where the superhighway runs. The blue paint provides a very clear easy to follow route and subsidiary measures along the route such as cycle parking will improve the situation for cyclists. However as you may have noticed the route is only advisory and therefore has no legal force. This means that parked cars, delivery vehicles and buses can all legally use the superhighway space as before making the route far from continuous. The positioning of the route –near to the kerb- also contradicts the advice of Lambeth’s and other cycle trainers that riders should take an assertive riding position.

Lambeth Cyclists have concerns that these features may undermine the effectiveness of the routes. We also have concerns that more has not been done to remedy the conflict between cars and cyclists along Clapham High Street, the Stockwell Junction and the junction outside Oval tube station.

For the best advice on using the route see the centre page article in the Lambeth Council publication Lambeth Life 15 July edition. We will be gathering feedback including carrying out observations at key Lambeth junctions to send back to Boris. We hope that the lessons learned on cycle superhighway 7 can be applied to future superhighway routes acorss London.

TfL - Cycle superhighway information
SE1 - Cycle Superhighways launched by Boris Johnson
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