Architecture themed ride - concrete two

Our next Architecture Ride will be on Saturday 30 September and will be the second episode of our exploration of the many and dazzling things that can done with an often maligned building material - Concrete!

Following last year's Concrete One ride in West and North London, we are now running Concrete Two, visiting some concrete delights of South London and the City.

While concrete is often associated with the architecture of the 1960s, and in particular the style known as brutalism, it remains a widely-used building material, employed both for its structural and aesthetic qualities. The ride will include some 60s and 70s 'classics' as well as more recent buildings that make full use of this versatile and varied building material.

Meet at the entrance to Stockwell Bus Garage on Lansdowne Way, SW4 at 10.45.
Stockwell bus garage. Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0
The ride, which will be easy-paced and as much as possible on quiet roads, will finish on the South Bank at around 4.00pm, with lunch along the way.

Ride led by Tessa Wright and Mark Knox. Enquiries - Mark 07765 945530.

New Brixton Hill plans will make conditions worse

TFL has another consultation on plans for Brixton Hill, this time to speed up the traffic turning into both Dumbarton Road and Upper Tulse Hill. Brixton Hill is a major cycle artery with poor conditions for cycling.

Plans are described as a ‘vulnerable road users safety scheme’. However, it is clear that the scheme has been designed not to protect or improve conditions for vulnerable road users but to speed up the motor vehicle movements that are causing the danger. Motor vehicle on motor vehicle collisions may be reduced but conditions for people walking or on bikes will be worse.

Removing some bus lane
The new plans include the removal of some bus lane. This February TFL’s consultation response on changes to bus lanes on Brixton Hill rejected calls for protected cycling facilities arguing “proposals provide benefits to cyclists with the improved continuity of bus lanes”. By TFL’s own logic removing sections of bus lane will be a dis-benefit to cyclists.

On sections of Brixton Hill where bus lanes are not continuous and at times when lanes are not operating vehicles commonly undertake at speed causing significant danger and discomfort for people on bikes.

See TFL's plan and email your response to TFL by 13 October.

Volume of traffic turning at speed
The danger for pedestrians and cyclists comes from the volume of traffic and the speed at which it turns into and out of these side roads. The existing build-outs were installed with the aim of slowing turning traffic to improve pedestrian and cyclist safety. Widening the junction entrances will increase vehicle and worsen conditions for for people walking and cycling.

A recent survey of residents by Brixton Hill councillors identified both Dumbarton Road and Tulse Hill Road as having major problems with fast, aggressive, rat-running traffic. The scheme states as a "benefit" that removal of the kerb build out pinch point will ease congestion at the junction. This is likely to increase the volume of traffic using these roads as rat runs and exacerbate already poor conditions on these residential streets. Pinch points were added to nearby New Park Road in 2016 with the explicit aim of increasing congestion and discouraging use, albeit with very limited success.

Rat running on residential roads
The problem to be addressed is a rat run on residential roads that crosses an A-road causing danger to both motorised traffic and vulnerable road users.

The solution to that problem is not to make that rat run easier. The solution is to block it through modal filters either at the junctions or in the streets beyond. Lambeth Cyclists is strongly against the proposed changes which will have a negative impact for people riding bikes.

Council Elections - we still need space for cycling

Next May's council elections will be here quicker than you might like.

With the elections just a few months away it is time to review progress made by your councillors against the 'ward asks' they pledged to support four years ago before being elected.

What you can do now:
  • Check out what was demanded in your ward
  • Email your councillors (who? search with your postcode) with your comments and questions on progress during their term in power.


Why comment on Lambeth's Local Plan Review

Lambeth council's local plan is coming up for review.

30 years ago it wasn't possible to walk or cycle directly along the Lambeth Thameside under Westminster and Vauxhall bridges. In the early 1990s the Lambeth Cyclists got a small change made to the Lambeth Local Plan to show a walking and cycling route along the Thames. A simple line on a map was used by the council to require major developers in those areas to fund the extensive works required to create a direct access under the bridges.

15 years ago Westminster Cycling Campaign obtained a short paragraph in the Westminster local plan which required car free office development.

Lambeth will soon be reviewing the Local Plan, watch our website and social media for details.

Many areas have a dedicated section. Perhaps there is site where you live that is likely to be redeveloped, where a new developer funded cycling route would open up a local network of routes. Perhaps there is a local school or health centre which cannot afford secure cycle parking. If it was shown on a plan, that could be funded by other development. Perhaps there is a local station which doesn't have a lift to take cycles up or down to the platform.

The line on the map which brought about the Thameside route took minutes to draw on a plan and send into the Council.

Cycle to Work Day, 13 September

This year's Cycle to Work Day is 13 September.

Even if you ride to work regularly Cycle to Work Day could help you encourage colleagues to ride to work too or tell your boss to get on their bike your employer to do more to help.

The London Cycling Campaign has an advice page with year round top tips.