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Activists criticise ‘weak’ Archway cycling revamp

PUBLISHED: 11:40 08 November 2017 | UPDATED: 11:40 08 November 2017

Cyclists have complained about 'weak' cycling changes in Archway. Picture: TfL

Cyclists have complained about 'weak' cycling changes in Archway. Picture: TfL

Archant

Changes to the cycling system in Archway have done little to improve safety, cyclists have said.

The £12.6million improvements, part of Transport for London’s (TfL) road modernisation project, included upgraded cycle lanes, more pedestrian crossings and a larger public space.

They aimed to make the busy junctions safer for cyclists and pedestrians, but riders said they fall short of expectations.

John Ackers, of Cycle Islington, said: “It comes down to a weakness of design. Shared pedestrian/cycle spaces anywhere haven’t been great, and I’ve seen problems at the bus stop as well.

“Cycle lanes run really close to the bus stop, so people stand in the cycle lanes while they’re waiting for the bus.”

Changes included converting pedestrian crossings in St John’s Way and Archway Road to shared pedestrian/cycle crossings, and updating the shared crossing on Holloway Road with Junction Road.

Cycle tracks were also added to Highgate Hill and the public space on Junction Road, and a segregated route for southbound cyclists from Highgate Hill to St John’s Way was introduced.

A TfL spokesperson said: “All of the improvements aimed to make the area nicer for everyone, and introducing cycle lanes was intended to make cycling safer and easier around the gyratory.”

But critical cyclists said the changes meant they were forced into dodging parked cars in the cycle lanes of Highgate Hill and Holloway Road, before being dumped into heavy traffic with no safe segregated access.

Jonathan Klaff, chairman of Islington Cycling Club, said: “The biggest issue is the U-turn the buses have to do. It creates conflict and blocks the view for cyclists.

“Also, if you’re going southbound down the hill you’re not segregated, so it’s unclear whether the red lights for the buses apply to you at the bottom. If it’s wet what you could end up having are cyclists skidding and hitting buses. I know there’s been one serious collision already.”

It comes amid criticism about Islington’s cycling infrastructure.

The Stop Killing Cyclists group was last night (Wed) set to hold a “die-in” outside the town hall to coincide with an inquest into the death of Jerome Roussel, a cyclist who was crushed by an HGV in Pentonville Road in May.

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