On Saturday, a group of London cyclists will gather for an unusual ride. The tour won't feature the city's historical or cultural landmarks, but its ten most dangerous intersections, as ranked by cyclist deaths and injuries. The ride is being led by two cycling bloggers, Mark of ibikelondon and Danny of Cyclists in the City.
The tour follows in the wake of three protests led by the London Cycling Campaign to protest a redesign of the junction at Blackfriars Bridge, which many transportation advocates argue ignores the needs and safety of cyclists, pedestrians and public transportation.When Transport for London argued that those plans were similar to many supposedly cyclist-friendly intersections, Mark and Danny saw a way to connect the common sentiment that brought 2,500 protestors to Blackfriars Bridge to a wider cause.
Mark and Danny originally conceived of the ride as a fact finding mission, to visit each of the ten most dangerous sites and brainstorm ways to make them safer. Enthusiastic public response quickly made it more ambitious, and now around 100 cyclists are expected to take part.
There will be safety marshals, photographers, and breaks for tea and coffee. It is not a protest, Mark says, but a chance to educate the public about the dangers cyclists and pedestrians face in a car-oriented setting:
We'll take photos of each junction and record the experience of riding these locations; we'll rate each junction for safety, comfort, air quality and cycle facilities and pass our findings directly to Transport for London - that way the next time the terrible and the inevitable happens at one of these junctions TfL can't say they weren't warned.
If you're in the area, head to St Mark's Church in Kennington for a 10:30am departure.
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