CityCyclingEdinburgh Forum » Infrastructure

Leith Walk - next stage

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  1. chdot
    Admin

    "
    greenerleith (@greenerleith)

    30/07/2012 23:21

    Anyone can comment on our first stab at writing up the Vision For Leith Walk consultation here:

    http://bit.ly/QOSGjh

    What do you think?

    "

    Posted 5 years ago #
  2. chdot
    Admin

    "
    (@RadioForthNews)

    31/07/2012 12:05

    Councillors have approved plans for £5.5m of upgradeis to Leith Walk. 18 months of roadworks start in September.

    "

    Posted 5 years ago #
  3. lionfish
    Member

    The bike thing is good - but I feel one issue is there's isn't an alternative choice, i.e. If you can't have a bike lane then what about X. When I went to the consultation I was pushing for raised junctions/20mph/more crossing for pedestrians (zebra?)/less parking (agreed this might push more into side streets)/more greenery/etc.

    The whole document looks very good. It seems you're expressing the sentiment of people fairly well.

    Thanks!

    Posted 5 years ago #
  4. chdot
    Admin

    "

    Chiefs float night-shift plan for Leith reparation works

    http://m.scotsman.com/edinburgh-evening-news/chiefs-float-night-shift-plan-for-leith-reparation-works-1-2450282

    "

    Posted 5 years ago #
  5. sallyhinch
    Member

    Here's War against the Motorist's take on Leith Walk http://waronthemotorist.wordpress.com/2012/08/06/testing-edinburghs-commitment/

    Posted 5 years ago #
  6. Min
    Member

    "But there really are no excuses left here. The experts have already visited and pointed out how ludicrously easy it should be to get this one right."

    Well there is no doubt in my mind that they are going to *bleep* this up.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  7. Dave
    Member

    I had a reply from Jim Orr this afternoon basically confirming that no significant improvement to cycle infrastructure would take place:

    "1. Dedicated cycle lanes are expensive and exceed the budget which we have available to repair these streets.
    2. The necessary consultation for dedicated cycle lanes would delay by many many months the urgent repair work to the roads and pavements which has already been announced and which is planned.
    3. Such lanes were never part of the (widely praised) active travel action plan. Our priority is to implement this plan.

    I have asked the officers to look again at the space and funding available for future improvements to facilities such as dedicated cycle lanes along Leith Walk, but the view in the past is that is it difficult
    to justify. Hence, to change the current reinstatement works would also be very difficult."

    This is Edinburgh of course...

    Posted 5 years ago #
  8. chdot
    Admin

    I'm still mightily confused by all this.

    Yes there is a need to fix LW - some of due to badly done 'tram preparation work'.

    Yes there is still the (misguided in my opinion) view that CEC has to assume the tram will get extended one day' - so it would be a 'waste' to put in infrastructure that 'would have to be removed'.

    No point(?) in having the discussion again about why no room for tram and bike lanes.

    That all said - what is the point of the consultation that they are planning to do??

    Posted 5 years ago #
  9. chdot
    Admin

    "Safe cycle lanes to be made law in Wales"

    http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3409144.ece

    Posted 5 years ago #
  10. sallyhinch
    Member

    Is it time for a mini POP? Up Leith Walk en masse? before they waste this opportunity

    Posted 5 years ago #
  11. chdot
    Admin

    "
    So I'm certain that the physical characteristics of our streets have to change if we are ever to see a true cycling revolution in the UK. It's a planning matter. And who does planning in the UK? Largely, it's the councils

    "

    Slide down to the photos -

    http://www.voleospeed.co.uk/2012/08/why-brents-cycling-strategy-will-fail.html

    Posted 5 years ago #
  12. holisticglint
    Member

    3. Such lanes were never part of the (widely praised) active travel action plan. Our priority is to implement this plan

    Jim has got us there. Appendix F of the ATAP make it clear that main routes get cycle lanes only :-(

    Depressing thing is that the targets for cycling are so low that the spontaneous up tick we are currently seeing will probably meet them in spite of the infrastructure in place thereby validating the ATAP !

    Posted 5 years ago #
  13. holisticglint
    Member

    @sallyhinch: I second the motion

    Posted 5 years ago #
  14. lionfish
    Member

    "Is it time for a mini POP? Up Leith Walk en masse? before they waste this opportunity" - sounds like a plan!

    Posted 5 years ago #
  15. crowriver
    Member

    Somehow the council have to come around to the idea that Leith Walk and other streets in the city are very wide. They are not 'too narrow' for segregated cycle lanes. Of course, the car parking needs to be taken away on one side of the wide streets!

    Take a look at Easter Road for example. Incredibly wide for most of its length, before the railway bridge pinch point further up. So wide that cars can be parked perpendicular to the street! What an amazing waste of road space. Remove the car parking on one side of Easter Road and you could easily build a two-way segregated cycle lane, at least to the railway bridge junction with Albion Road. The lane could link with the Seafield path. THAT's joined up infrastructure...


    Posted 5 years ago #
  16. gkgk
    Member

    I'd be happier pedalling up Easter Road if it weren't for that outrageous traffic island pinch point thing near B&Q making me into a moving road block! And the perpendicular parking in the upward (slower) direction is horrible.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  17. fimm
    Member

    And where are all these cars going to park, if you take away the parking and put in bike lanes?

    (I don't own a car myself. I know you can manage without one. But I'm not typical. And it is the councillors and residents who are going to ask that sort of question.)

    Posted 5 years ago #
  18. Morningsider
    Member

    Dave - thanks for sharing the Councillor's response. Here is my response:

    1. If the Council is concerned about cost have they considered installing mandatory on-street cycle lanes. These are effectively solid lines of paint along the road. The additional cost would be minimal.
    2. I assume the Council will already be promoting a traffic regulation order to create new parking, waiting and loading restrictions on Leith Walk. There is no reason why the cycle lane provisions couldn't also be included in this. In effect, this would add no, or minimal, extra delay to the TRO process.
    3. A very disappointing attitude. The Council changes its mind on transport issues all the time - e.g. adding £300m to the cost of the tram project while cutting it from two full lines to one half line.

    Obviously, this response was prepared by Council officers and simply supports their views on this matter. It would be nice if the Councillor asked how much extra the provision of cycle lanes would add to the cost and how long the "delay" might be.

    I have to say, after cycling along Princes Street on Sunday - a street closed for 2 years and had 10's of millions of pounds spent on it - I think the Council hate cyclists.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  19. chdot
    Admin

    MUST be room on Leith Walk for something like this -

    https://mobile.twitter.com/robhayles1/status/233108844123934720

    Posted 5 years ago #
  20. sallyhinch
    Member

    @Fimm - parking can go *outside* bike lanes - that's more or less standard practice on the continent. Much less of a door hazard, buffers bikes from the traffic & means drivers nipping into parking spaces aren't crossing invisible bikes. Also then double parking becomes the cars' problem, not the bikes. The design done by the Dutch engineers I believe showed exactly that - where the road is narrow, you only have parking on one side or the other. At junctions (where there's no parking anyway) you either bring the bike lanes back into the line of traffic for visibility (but don't make them disappear altogether) or keep them well back from side roads so cars don't nose out into the bike lanes to make their turn

    Posted 5 years ago #
  21. pjmatthews
    Member

    @chdot 's comments on planners have persuaded me to join this forum after months lurking from Twitter!

    Just to defend us planners, I think you'll find the vast majority of land-use planners really support sustainable transport and recognise how good urban design means creating safe roads for pedestrians and cyclists.

    The barrier is more often road traffic engineers who are incredibly conservative and obsessed by car traffic, regulations, signage and railings.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  22. Kim
    Member

    @pjmatthews that is interesting, so the planners blame the engineers. The few road traffic engineers I have met all blame the planners... ;-)

    How do we get everyone on board?

    Posted 5 years ago #
  23. chdot
    Admin

    "
    @chdot 's comments on planners have persuaded me to join this forum after months lurking from Twitter!

    Just to defend us planners

    "

    I've probably said 'planners' when the 'problem' may well be traffic engineers - and indeed politicians.

    I suspect that the 'roads' people are often able to hide behind planners who then get the blame.

    Both sets of people can blame 'legislation/rules' and (with some justification) politicians who want growth/inward investment etc.

    I've seen the actions (and inactions) of planners/engineers/politicians for many years.

    I've seen the grand ambitions of Abercrombie and Buchanan (both before my time!).

    I've had conversations with very senior planners who were scared (don't think that's too strong a word) to say no to Scottish and Newcastle - 'in case they took the jobs to Newcastle'. They played the same game in that city too.

    I've seen top Highways people 'retired' because they refused to stop working on roads projects that councillors had voted to stop.

    I believe it is currently (some) planners who don't like red surfacing - though it's probably engineers telling the politicians that it's 'too expensive'.

    "
    I think you'll find the vast majority of land-use planners really support sustainable transport and recognise how good urban design means creating safe roads for pedestrians and cyclists.

    "

    If any of them work for CEC they are not being very persuasive.

    @pjmatthews please stick around and explain how planners intend to overcome their adversaries - including 'public opinion', the Evening News and developers with land 'options' and good lawyers.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  24. Min
    Member

    There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it.

    Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it.

    Somebody got angry about that because it was Everybody's job.

    Everybody thought that Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it.

    It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done

    And that is why this hateful hole of a city will remain a hateful hole of a city

    Posted 5 years ago #
  25. pjmatthews
    Member

    @kim and @chdot I agree with you both. To look at the bigger picture, it's wrong to blame specific groups or individuals. Broadly, we've created institutions that support designing roads in a certain way (fast cars and railings). There are specific individuals and a legacy of some professional knowledge that is probably making the institution "sticky" and resistant to change.

    In a positive mood, I'd say the change is happening slowly. If you look at national guidance, say for example Designing Places, it does promote good urban design which would be very different from the sorts of places we have now. Inside organisations and politically things are changing as well, I do feel we have the ear of politicians now, although they can be slow to act. And my moles tell me we have a lot of senior support in CEC for implementing decent cycle provision on Leith Walk.

    It'd be interesting to get the views of planners and roads engineers working now as to what they feel the barriers are to radical change.

    Just to defend planners (again) @chdot does have a point re. development. These days planners can do virtually nothing about infrastructure that is already there. As a profession, it is mainly about guiding new development, and then you are beholden to developer's coffers.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  26. spytfyre
    Member

    Has anybody spoken to DaveS recently - he IS a road traffic planner!

    Posted 5 years ago #
  27. tammytroot
    Member

    I 3rd or 4th (or even more) the idea of a mini pop up Leith walk and handing something in to CEC chambers.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  28. fimm
    Member

    @Fimm - parking can go *outside* bike lanes - that's more or less standard practice on the continent.

    Eh? You mean pedestrian path, then cycle lane, then parked cars, then road? Doesn't that just move the dooring issue from one side of the car to the other? And how do you get in or out of your car if there are cyclists hoofing it past you the whole time? Do you have a link to the sort of thing you are talking about, because I can't visualise this at all? (Also, how do you stop people parking in the cycle lane?)

    Edited to add, I suppose you just have space between the cycle path and the parked cars. I still think you would get illegal parking on the cycle lane, though.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  29. sallyhinch
    Member

    @Fimm Can't track down a pic just now but A View from the Cycle paths should be full of them. Also any shots from Copenhagen

    To answer your questions - the cycle path is raised (more pavement height) or kerbed which tends to deter parking. The dooring issue is mitigated by having a bit of space between the cars and the path - and because it's the passenger door, it gets opened less often. If it does open then the cyclist is moving away towards the footpath and not flinging themselves into traffic so the consequences are less serious (for the cyclist at least - pedestrians may disagree). Also a decent width of path is needed, which also gives more escape room. People getting out of cars will have to cross the stream of bikes but as long as folks aren't going hell for leather a bit of negotiation is all it takes. And even in the NL the bikes aren't constant...

    It sounds odd when you hear it described - and when you first see it in the NL it even looks a bit scary as your instincts go 'uh oh, door zone' but done properly it does work

    Will try and dig out some pics later - got to go to the dentist now

    Posted 5 years ago #
  30. Tulyar
    Member

    One good starting point is for Council to stop providing on street parking (they have no statutory obligation to provide anything more than roads to drive and cycle along) and adopt the Japanese policy for all cars in the town. If you want to keep a car you have to have somewhere to park it.

    http://www.reinventingparking.org/2010/08/japan-style-proof-of-parking.html

    The regime delivers a commercial market for providing parking, and keeping the streets clear of untidy parked cars....

    Posted 5 years ago #

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