After a series of deaths of cyclists on London roads, Mayor Boris Johnson has announced a new network of bike lanes. In the report, Changing the culture of cycling in London, the Mayor says in the forward:
But most of the routes will be ‘Quietways’, using London’s matchless network of quieter side streets – along with routes through parks and on canal towpaths, which they will share with pedestrians. Quietways will be your secret cycling passages through London. They will take you everywhere you need to go, directly and easily,
but using routes you might never know existed until we showed you.
I want to ‘de-Lycrafy’ the bicycle. This new network and its users will gradually, I hope, change the very culture of cycling in London. I want to reduce the testosterone levels; reduce conflict between other vehicles and cyclists; and move towards a continental-style cycling culture, where cycling is normal, not something you have to gird up for. I want more women and older people cycling.
Now while many will question whether the biggest problem of London cycling is too much testosterone, Danny Williams of the Cyclists in the City blog says:
It’s a promising first step but we need to see how prepared the Mayor and the boroughs will be to make these routes really work, or if they are just going to be some signposts on streets that are currently quite hostile to cycling.