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Eight outer London boroughs in shortlist for share of £100 million 'Mini-Holland' funding

TfL & Mayor aim to create cycling super suburbs

Transport for London has announced the shortlist of eight outer London boroughs in the running for a share of £100 million in funding intended to raise the standard of cycling provision in the winning areas to Dutch standards.

The three or four winners, to be announced early next year, will benefit from very high levels of spending concentrated on relatively small areas to make them, over time, into places every bit as cycle-friendly as their Dutch equivalents, says TfL. The £100 million will be shared between them, though not necessarily equally.

The shortlisted boroughs are Bexley, Ealing, Enfield, Kingston, Merton and Newham. Richmond and Waltham Forest are also shortlisted subject to addressing certain gaps in their initial proposals.

The submission proposals include plans to scrap gyratories and reunite suburbs split asunder by major roads.

Some of the highlights include:

  • Bexley – Creating radical new junction solutions for cyclists in key locations and rolling out an extensive segregated and semi-segregated cycling network.
  • Ealing – A cycle-friendly redesign of Ealing town centre and a special cycling "quietway" between Ealing and Southall.
  • Enfield – Introducing a Dutch style roundabout, with protected cycle lanes, in Edmonton Green, segregated routes along main roads and a "Cycle Superhub" in Enfield town centre.
  • Kingston – a New York "High Line" style public space, for pedestrians and cyclists, along the railway line and across the Thames, a new network of routes, a cycle boardwalk on the banks of the river and cars removed from part of central Kingston.
  • Merton – Redesigning Wimbledon town centre on Dutch principles and building a cycle hub at the Centre Court shopping centre.
  • Newham – A complete redesign of Stratford town centre, removing the gyratory; new off-road Superhighway routes.
  • Richmond – New cycleways on unused land alongside railway lines.
  • Waltham Forest – A new cycle superhighway on Lea Bridge Road and a Dutch-style roundabout at Whipps Cross.

TfL and the Mayor's Cycling Commissioner for London, Andrew Gilligan, will now work with the shortlisted boroughs to draw up more detailed final submissions.

Andrew Gilligan said: "Councils across outer London have stepped up to the plate and we are thrilled with how many want to redesign their town centres around cycling. There is enough money available to deliver dramatic change in the chosen boroughs, and make them places that suburbs and towns all over Britain will want to copy."

According to TFL, half of all cycleable trips in London are in the outer suburbs. The vast majority of trips in the suburbs are less than two miles, around ten minutes by bike, but are currently mostly made by car.

The aim of this program will be to create ‘mini-Hollands’ in the winning suburbs. Each outer London borough was invited to submit proposals for:

  • A substantial redesign of the main town centre to make it genuinely excellent for cyclists.
  • Redesigns of some of the secondary town centres.
  • Addressing severance, where this is a problem: new cycle and pedestrian crossings of major roads, railway lines or waterways.
  • A network of good cycle routes radiating out from the main town centre, and secondary centres, to other parts of the borough, paralleling all the main local travel routes. Redesigns of problem junctions where they are used by cyclists.
  • At least one good commuter route from the borough to central London.
  • Cycle superhubs at local railway stations.

During September, Andrew Gilligan and TfL officials will visit the shortlisted boroughs. An announcement of the winners is expected in early 2014.

John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for Along with founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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Tradescant | 10 years ago

More than a little surprised at Merton, fine purveyors of door zone cycle 'lanes' and the celebrated Martin Way debacle.

tonemonkey | 10 years ago

I love the fact that my borough has the most pathetic proposal. Unused land along railway lines? Well done Richmond. Resurfacing some of the roads that cyclists use regularly? Priory lane? Queens Ride? Castelnau? Segregated cycle lanes would be nice too.

jollygoodvelo | 10 years ago

I have to say all these new segregated cycle lanes sound like a brilliant idea.

Of course, people walking dogs and children without leads will be banned from them, to allow 'progress' to be made. Right? Oh.

1750nick | 10 years ago

Bla bla bla.....

qwerky | 10 years ago

Some years ago I lived in Ealing and used to cycle into central London every day. I'd have some sort of 'incident' about once a week on average. Top three were 1) hitting cars pulling out of side roads, 2) getting left hooked - especially riding in a bus lane, especially on the A4020 Vale in Acton, 3) Hitting pedestrians walking into the road without looking.

Its a nice idea, but given TfL's track record I don't hold out much hope. Its inevitable they'll find some way to not get it right.

northstar | 10 years ago

And none of these will come to fruition.

Jonny_Trousers replied to northstar | 10 years ago
northstar wrote:

And none of these will come to fruition.

No, but think of the fun that'll have been had, and the money spent, pretending it might.

eurotrash | 10 years ago

It would be great if there were a few "main" routes into central London from the various outer locations, for bikes and only bikes, so if you lived a bit outside (as I will be shortly) you could cycle to one of these "cycle super highways" and then from there have a traffic and traffic light-free route for most of your journey, on a road as big as a regular road. Then at whatever point you would just break off the "highway" and complete your journey on regular roads again. I reckon it would save huge amounts of travelling time (well except for those who RLJ) and be infinitely more enjoyable than the current situation of dicing with traffic for an hour each way.

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