SPACE FOR CYCLING 2014
From 7 April to 22 May 2014, with the help of thousands of Londoners, LCC called on every candidate in the 2014 local council elections in London to support one specific action to create safe Space for Cycling in their local area.
A total of 629 suggested cycle improvements were developed – one per electoral ward, across 32 boroughs in London. These fell into one of 6 categories: (1) Safer Routes for schoolchildren, (2) Areas without through motor traffic, (3) Protected space on main roads/major junctions, (4) Safe cycle routes via parks and canals, (5) 20mph speed limits, (6) Liveable town centres.
• 84550 emails were sent by 6595 people to 6776 local election candidates calling on them to support the cycle improvement identified in their ward.
• 3384 candidates (50% of the total number standing) across all the major political parties agreed to support Space for Cycling and the specific local cycling improvement identified by the London Cycling Campaign in their area.
• Of the 1875 councillors elected, 811 pledged to support Space for Cycling and the local measure identified in their ward. That’s 43% of all elected councillors.
The eight-week Space for Cycling campaign successfully combined the latest online campaigning technology, hundreds of local volunteers, thousands of citywide suppporters, and a six-point policy platform.
LCC’s custom website features details of all 629 ward-specific demands, which were decided by local people, as well as an online ‘email your candidates’ action tool, used by supporters to send nearly 90,000 messages to politicians.
The Big Ride ride and rally (pictured) on Saturday 17 May 2014 around motor-traffic-free streets in central London attracted 5000 participants and major media coverage. Other activities supporting the campaign included on-street protests during the Tube strike, a political cartoon, guerrilla knitting, and a local campaign event in every borough.
The Space for Cycling campaign was also adopted by numerous UK organisations, including CTC (the national cyclists’ organisation) and cycling organisations in Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Manchester and Sheffield – who organised their own lobbying activities and rides in support of the Space for Cycling policy platform.
• 50% of London’s local election candidates backing Space for Cycling
• Nearly 90,000 messages sent by Londoners to their local politicians
• 629 ward-specific demands for local cycling improvements decided by local people
• Messages sent to politicians from our supporters in 100% of electoral wards
• 58 borough-wide political parties backing Space for Cycling en masse
• 15 boroughs in which more than half the local election candidates back Space for Cycling
• Hackney: highest level of support from 99% of local election candidates
• 5000 people joined the Big Ride in central London on Sat 17 May
URBAN CYCLE PARKING
Inadequate bike parking in the street can be an inconvenience, while a lack of secure parking at home, at work and on the move is a major barrier to people using their bikes more. Only the provision of hundreds of thousands of new spaces, many of them secure, will make up for the current shortfall.
We’re encouraging cyclists to suggest cycle parking, so we can pass on your needs to local councils and the mayor.
We’re also lobbying for the following measures:
• Thousands more on-street parking spaces – the mayor and borough councils must provide adequate cycle parking at every public destination, with at least 100,000 more spaces on London streets.
• Much more secure workplace parking – only a small proportion of workplaces have secure bike parking, whereas enough is needed for at least 15% of staff and, at places of study, 25% of students.
• Stronger planning regulations – planning requirements should ensure that every office building provides bike spaces for at least 15% of staff, with new developments providing 25% or more.
• Secure bike parking for homes – cycle parking should be made standard on all council estates and new private residential developments, with provision for at least 15% of the occupants.
• Adequate provision at transport hubs – at least 500 cycle parking spaces should be provided at every major rail station in Greater London, with at least 200 of these spaces being in a secure compound.
• Proper information on public buildings – detailed information about the provision and location of cycle parking should be made available by every public building in Greater London (eg, on their website).
For more info: urbancycleparking.org
SAFER LORRIES, SAFER CYCLING
We’re asking our supporters to write to the council leader calling for safer lorries and safer drivers. If you’ve already written, we ask you to share this campaign with friends and family.
• Lorries are involved in HALF the cyclist fatalities in Greater London, even though lorries make up only a small fraction of motor traffic.
• Lorries are also involved in many collisions that cause life-changing injuries.
• Pedestrians and motorcyclists are also extremely vulnerable to lorry danger.
We’re calling on all councils in London to take LCC’s Safer Lorries, Safer Cycling pledge (read details). It asks councils to put the following measures in place for all council-operated lorries and for all lorry contractors:
- Cyclist-awareness training for all lorry drivers – training involves lorry drivers riding bicycles on the road so they can better understand the vulnerability of people who cycle. This training is low cost and available all over London.
- All lorries to have the latest safety equipment – this means a full set of safety mirrors and sensors/cameras that help the driver be more aware of vulnerable road users near their vehicle. These cost a few hundred pounds per vehicle.
There’s a huge difference between the safety measures put in place by the best and worst councils. This map shows how the councils are performing, using a traffic light system (green = good, yellow = must do more, red = bad).
The private sector, haulage contractors and government bodies can be slow to change. However, they are responsive to pressure, and now we’ve succeeded in putting lorry danger at the top of the cycling safety agenda, then it’s only a matter of time before every council recognises the need to keep cyclists and pedestrians safe.
• Transport for London already uses identical Safer Lorries, Safer Cycling conditions for all its lorry services, so there’s no reason why all councils can’t achieve the same safety standards.
• Several private sector organisations also use very similar conditions for their lorries, including the Mineral Products Association and the C2C property group. These two organisations operate tens of thousands of lorries in London that follow Safer Lorries conditions.
• Council vehicles operate on local streets and are involved in fatal and serious collisions with cyclists and pedestrians.
• Councils spend taxpayers’ money on lorry services, so have a moral duty to only use the safest drivers and safest vehicles.
• Councils are voted in so they’re leaders are likely to be more receptive to public pressure than other organisations.
• Contractors, vehicles and drivers who work for councils work for other clients too, so pressing councils to make safety a priority is a major step towards creating a culture of safety throughout the whole lorry industry.