TFL Tackles Bicycle Parking Spaces and Encourages Would-Be Cyclists in Spring 2021
In Summer 2020, the UK government announced plans for a £2 billion scheme that would promote cycling across the nation. The first rollout of this initiative came with the bike repair vouchers of July, that crashed the website within seconds of release. Following this was the announcement of long-term plans for redesigning British towns and city centres, which would allow for thousands of miles in new cycle lanes, more bike racks, as well as restricting the use of motor vehicles in these areas to create ‘mini-Hollands’, where bike-use would dominate.
With the creation of lots of temporary bicycle lanes over the Autumn and Winter, to be eventually replaced by for-purpose lanes, in 2021 the Government has once again committed itself to sustaining the uptick in cycling experienced over the past year.
Britons have taken up cycling in droves as a form of stress relief, exercise and as a way of getting around over the past ten months. While it was feared that Winter might dampen the demand for bikes, it seems that the subsequent lockdown has only further entrenched the benefits of bicycling for Britons.
It is encouraging, therefore, to hear the announcement of more measures. Transport for London, for example, which in the Autumn ran a new TV advert that asked people to choose to commute by bike over the car, and which has already constructed more than 46km of cycle lanes as part of its Streetspace programme, will build thousands of new cycling parking spaces, thanks to a £1 million grant awarded to 14 London boroughs.
As part of this programme, some 900 new spaces will be created along the current routes as well as a further 1,100 spaces of on-street cycle parking, residential cycle hangars and new cycle hubs at tube and rail stations across London.
Since lack of available, safe parking spaces for bicycles is often cited as the primary reason for would-be cyclists forgoing their bike, along with investing in a premium model, this is an encouraging move.
The other arm of this initiative seeks to encourage people to take up cycling by providing free lessons, alongside strengthening the Highway Code to enforce better driving etiquette towards cyclists and improving safety standards for lorries.
Towards this TFL has collaborated with Halfords on a drive to encourage Londoners to take up bikes, learn know how to ride them safely and secure them; and those who complete TFL’s free online Cycle Skills course will receive 15% off Halfords’ own brand locks as well as lights and helmets. You can access this course here.
If the ‘golden age of cycling’ is to be made a reality, then Government will have to stick to these measures. Hopefully other local governments will continue to follow in London’s footsteps here, as they largely have done over the past year.
Promoting this has been the particular interest in e-bikes, and support for purchasing electric bikes. So, if you think an electric bike would help you and are interested in the electric bikes offered at ARCC Bikes, you can apply as an employee as part of Cyclescheme to get a tax-free electric ARCC Bike, like a Moulton, or choose to electrically convert your Brompton.