Cyclists say they have been ignored in Baldock's multi-million pound street improvements
CYCLISTS claim they have been given a rough ride and been ignored in a town s multi- million pound enhancement scheme. The Cyclists Touring Club (CTC), Britain s largest cycling organisation, says access to cyclists has been ignored in the Baldock street
CYCLISTS claim they have been given a rough ride and been ignored in a town's multi- million pound enhancement scheme.
The Cyclists Touring Club (CTC), Britain's largest cycling organisation, says access to cyclists has been ignored in the Baldock street works.
Alasdair Massie, the CTC North Herts representative, said: "Considering �2.3 million has been spent, we are disappointed by the complete lack of thought given to cycle access.
"Most of the changes are purely cosmetic; the only significant change has been made to make Church Street and Sun Street one way preventing access to the High Street by bicycle from the residential streets immediately to the north."
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Mr Massie, also claims the Hertfordshire Cycling Strategy explicitly requires designers to maintain two-way cycle access when closing streets or making them one way to motor traffic and there was no excuse for designers to ignore written policies.
"We put time, money and resources into developing these plans and strategies and designers just ignore them. It isn't acceptable," said Mr Massie.
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"Cycle access costs nothing if it is incorporated when major street works are carried out. Now we are in a position where any improvements will need money to be spent digging up the paving that has just been put down.
"It is pouring public money down the drain. For all the money that has been spent on roads around Baldock recently there has been little reduction in traffic.
"Traffic in the High Street fell by 16 per cent after the bypass opened, less than seasonal falls in school holidays and on other streets like North Road, traffic has actually increased between 20 and 30 per cent.
"We need to work harder to make our streets more attractive for walking and cycling, to make Baldock an attractive place to work and shop rather than just a big car park. If designers can't find the space for quality cycling access then I'm not sure what it says about them"
The implementation of cycle routes is the responsibility of Herts County Council where a spokesman said recently: "We have responded to the CTC on a number of issues concerning the council's approach to the provision of cycle paths in various locations in Baldock and Hitchin.
"All local highways projects, including those that incorporate new cycle paths and facilities, are developed following consultation with local representatives and residents.
"Following the correspondence from the CTC, the issue of cycling provision will be considered through the council's own scrutiny process during the autumn.