Friday, 21 September 2012

Coventry Cycling Map - Proposed and Problems

This diagram shows the proposed "Sky Blue" routes in and around Coventry, following the 12 spoke pattern.

Click on Image to enlarge

The red circles (and larger crosses) show where problems exist. In many ways, the network is already there - with better signage and supportive mapping, most places are currently reachable from the city centre for reasonably competent cyclists. As the network improves, it becomes more accessible to other cyclists, and eventually anyone can go anywhere at any time.

The biggest single challenge at the moment is getting to and from Ryton. This could be significantly improved if it was made a part of the Section 106 (planning gain) agreement for the Coventry Gateway Project.

Cycling in Coventry - the bad

Here's a rogue's gallery of some of the worst aspects of cycling in Coventry. I will add more in due course.


Manifietso for Coventry - Cycling Campaign Postcard

This (virtual) postcard captures the core elements of the Manifietso campaign:
  1. Remember Coventry's proud manufacturing history - especially as the home of the modern bike. Together with our watchmaking history, this gives a very clear iconic concept based around a clockface wheel and spokes.
  2. "Going Dutch" means that contributions towards a cycling friendly city might come from a number of sources, including - the council transport budget and the DfT (the obvious ones), the NHS health promotion budget, including mental health and accident reduction (primarily for training), developers , sports promotion (developing a lasting Olympic legacy) and employers.
  3. There are twelve key theme "spokes" - built around infrastructure, training, partnerships and marketing.
  4. At the moment, around 3% of journeys in Coventry are made by bike (Centro), with no specific target to increase this. The Dutch city of Groningen is the world leader at 60% - yet these two cities are actually remarkably similar in terms of size, shape, geography, road networks and having large student populations.
  5. There are twelve key advantages (spokes) of promoting cycling, based around 4 themes of - health, economy, personal finance and environment.
  6. The proposed network would contain 12 trunk spoke routes, together with an inner "hub" around the edge of the city centre and an outer "rim" to provide an alternative to the main trunk routes. In addition to the trunk routes, a city wide 20mph speed limit as the default in residential areas would ensure everyone wanting to use their bikes to go to school, work, shops or just to visit friends could do so in safety and without hassle. The type of route would vary according to the part of the city it was going through, and this would include a mix of segregated parallel traffic free routes, lanes on roads and roads where space was shared with cars (providing suitable speed limits were in place).
  7. Everything in these proposals is doable, because it has already been done elsewhere. Even within the UK, Cambridge has around 30% of journeys made by bike. It will take political will, it will take time (a good 10 years), and yes, it will take money - but if it is done right, surely - WE ARE ALL WORTH IT!

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Coventry Councillors on twitter List

A growing number of Coventry councillors are active on twitter, and this can be a good way of engaging in debate.

Conservative Coventry council tweeters - @allanandrews, @CllrKentaylor, @kevin_j_foster, @johnablundell

Labour Coventry council tweeters - @DMHowells, @FayeAbbott, @JayneInnes, @mayaali001, @Naeem__akhtar, @RamLakha, @richard_d_sandy,
@Cllr_KevinMaton,  @TheStevenThomas, @davidgalliers, @CllrDavidWelsh, @lynnettekelly

The table below lists councillors by surname and includes which party they represent and whether or not they have a cabinet position:

Abbott Faye Wyken L @FayeAbbott
Akhtar Naeem St. Michael's L @Naeem__akhtar
Ali Maya Westwood L @mayaali001
Andrews Allan Earlsdon C @allanandrews
Bains Sucha Upper Stoke L
Bigham Linda Longford L
Blundell John Wainbody C  @johnablundell
Caan Kamran Upper Stoke L
Chater Dave Binley & W'hall L
Clifford Joe Holbrook L
Crookes Gary Wainbody C
Fletcher Colleen Upper Stoke L
Foster Kevin Cheylesmore C @kevin_j_foster  LEADER, OPPOSITION GROUP
Galliers David Bablake L   @davidgalliers
Gannon Damian Sherbourne L
Gingell Alison Sherbourne L
Hammon Michael Earlsdon C
Harvard Lindsley Longford L CITY SERVICES
Hetherton Patricia Woodlands L
Howells Dan Whoberley L @DMHowells 
Innes Jayne Whoberley L @JayneInnes
Kelly Lynnette Henley L  @lynnettekelly
Kershaw David Bablake L EDUCATION
Khan Tariq Foleshill L
Lakha Ram Binley & W'hall L @RamLakha
Lancaster Rachel Holbrook L
Lepoidevin Julia Woodlands C
Maton Kevin Henley L  @Cllr_KevinMaton
McNicholas John Lower Stoke L
Miks Catherine Lower Stoke L
Mulhall Keiran Radford L
Mutton Mal Radford L LEADER
Mutton John Binley & W'hall L
Noonan Hazel Cheylesmore C
O'Boyle Jim St. Michael's L CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE
Sandy Richard Westwood L @richard_d_sandy
Sawdon Tim Wainbody C
Sehmi Harjinder Cheylesmore L
Singh Bally Whoberley L
Singh Malkiat Foleshill L
Skinner David Westwood C
Skipper Tony Radford L
Sweet Hazel Wyken L
Taylor Ken Earlsdon C @CllrKentaylor
Thay Robert Wyken L
Thomas Steven Woodlands L   @TheStevenThomas
Townshend Phil Lower Stoke L COM SAFETY & EQUALITIES
Walsh Seamus Sherbourne L
Welsh David St. Michael's L  @CllrDavidWelsh
Williams Andrew Bablake C

Network West Midlands Cycling twitter Q&A

Network West Midlands are holding a twitter question and answer session about cycling between 4:30 and 5:30 this afternoon. This covers any issues which come under the wider remit of the Centro regional transport authority, including cycling infrastructure as well as anything to do with integration between cycling and public transport.

Here are my 10 starter questions:

  1. Why does Birmingham New Street Station, the hub of a metropolitan area of some 2,000,000 people, have just 39 cycle parking stands?
    (Note - there are no confirmed plans to increase this number as part of the new Street redevelopment. Comparison -- Groningen station in the Netherlands has over 10,000 cycle parking spaces, despite serving a city with one 10th of the population).
  2. Why don't @londonmidland trains have a cycle icon on the exterior doors? This makes it very difficult to find the right space.
  3. Why does the Network West Midlands 500 page local transport plan have less than two pages dedicated to cycling?
  4. Why are most cycling infrastructure improvements reliant on other road projects in order to go ahead?
  5. Why do councils have an obsession with shared cycling paths, even when space is available for segregation between pedestrians and cyclists?
  6. When will Coventry have a dedicated cycling officer?
  7. How will @networkwm ensure that Dutch standard cycle routes will be provided into the Coventry Gateway project?
  8. What is the annual transport infrastructure budget for Coventry, and how much of this is spent on cycling?
  9. Why are some traffic light controlled junctions being upgraded to include advance stop boxes when others are not?
  10. Are there any plans to convert the former railway from Hampton in Arden to Kingsbury into a cycle path?