The C-Team: Will This be Bristol's Cycle Network?
I love it when a plan comes together. But on this occasion it's the C-team, the Bristol Cycling Campaign, instead of TV's A-team who might be celebrating.
Earlier this year the Bristol Cycling Campaign launched their latest initiative, the Freedom to Ride Manifesto, including an affordable and deliverable strategy for a comprehensive transport network of 200 miles of Cycling Freeways and Cycling Quietways for the city region.
Bristol, chosen as the UK's first Cycling City, has seen big improvements and investment in cycling over the last ten years, including doubling, to over 16,000, the number of city residents who now cycling to work. But maintaining that investment in the next few years looked doubtful in the current financial crisis. Until last month's announcement by UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, that a number of English cities and national parks are to share £94 million to promote cycling, saying he wants to start "a cycling revolution".
Bristol, where the revolution is already well underway, is getting £7.7 million of that new cash, topped up locally by an additional £3.3 million from the city region's West of England Local Enterprise Partnership, creating an £11 million total fund.
Mayor of Bristol, George Ferguson, has set a target to almost double again the number cycling to work to 30,000 by 2016, and is planning to invest the bulk of the cash, nearly £8 million, in further improvements to the cycle path network, including the city's first stretches of Dutch-style segregated cycleways.
Suddenly the Freedom to Ride Manifesto's vision for a comprehensive city cycling network looks a real possibility. The only question now is just how much of that network (below) can the Mayor deliver with his new pot of funding?