sPark It across the Liverpool City Region

Transition Liverpool CIC (Community Interest Company) is part of the Transition Network and strives to bring communities within the Liverpool City Region (LCR) together through green projects. Having recently become a CIC our priority is to help support diverse communities across the LCR to make the necessary changes within their personal and civic lives to tackle the multiple problems of climate breakdown. To do this we will be providing several activities such as: free public educational talks, film shows, workshops and demonstrations on ways to create our own local and family based resources, climate cafes and finally mapping green enterprises within the Mersey region to support the development of an alternative local economy.
One of the projects that Transition Liverpool supports is sPark It. The sPark It team have now raised £10,649 on Spacehive with the support of 94 backers. The original event was supposed to take place on a weekend in June – a big street festival where everyone would be welcome to join us in supporting some of Liverpool’s greatest community organisations.
Unfortunately with the way the world is right now the team decided that, in the interest of everyone’s safety, we would no longer be planning a street festival.
However, the good news is we have come up with a plan! We will still support these organisations with pop-up parklets but instead of them being just on Hope street they will be across the LCR and on a staggered time scale. We hope with all your support this will be possible and it will still be as amazing as we first planned.
How do you get involved? Please don’t hesitate to contact Bee via bernadette@transitionliverpool.org
Want to keep up to date with sPark It? Sign up to Transition Liverpool’s Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/cAyFUH
More info on Transition Liverpool: www.transitionliverpool.org

Bernadette Colligan

LCR Active Travel Commissioner Update

Hello pedalling people. It’s about time I put some thoughts on paper for you tireless campaigners in these dystopian times. The role of Active Travel Commissioner couldn’t have been stranger since the outbreak of Covid. Talk about a rollercoaster!!! Where to start?
At the beginning of 2020 I went on a field trip with academics from Liverpool Uni to Holland and Belgium. We met some inspirational people from Delft and in particular Ghent. What a job they have done there. The Mayor and council redesigned their whole cityscape and then, in one weekend, placed barriers and camera traps everywhere to make it really difficult to drive through neighbourhoods and nearly impossible to drive through the city centre. They set up a control centre linked up to traffic cameras and helicopter cameras to be ready to try and manage the ensuing chaos as Monday rush hour started. They were prepared for a week long rethink of their plans. On Tuesday they packed up and went home. There was no chaos. The traffic evaporated as people had realised it was easier to walk or cycle to where they wanted to go. Amazing what is possible with the political will and vision.
A month later all the traffic evaporated in Liverpool as we entered the first lockdown. The pandemic has been so depressing in so many ways but there have been a few positives. I know that stepping out of our front doors on the first day of the lockdown and hearing only birds will live long in many peoples memories. I was asked by Comms to do a series of short videos encouraging people to walk and cycle round their local areas. I needn’t have bothered. Everyone just did it anyway. You will all remember the scenes. A cyclists dream appeared in the middle of a pandemic nightmare.
The government released the Emergency Transport Funding and Liverpool City Council in particular, led by Mayor Anderson, jumped on it. In went the first of six promised ‘pop up’ lanes. Wow this could be it! Are we finally changing direction? Not so fast. As soon as the first routes went in the backlash started. I was even abused on camera while doing an interview for The One Show “get rid off these f**king bike lanes!” The rollercoaster ride continued.
Let’s be frank, some of the ‘temporary’ interventions have been rushed and some are no good but some are amazing and worth fighting for. The New Chester Road, Vauxhall Road extension, Halton bus lane, Kingsley Road to Crown Street. All imperfect but still demonstrate what could be done in a more attractive permanent manner in the near future.
Even the most noisily objected to, West Derby Road, has registered over 40,000 journeys since it was put in. The point is that what the last year has allowed is the chance to try things differently. Will Bold Street ever have traffic again? Surely Castle Street, in the heart of the city, will remain pedestrianised when we all return to ‘normal’?
Invaluable experience and knowhow has also been gained. I know that council members and officers have been on a learning curve as steep as The Big One in Blackpool but they have pressed on regardless. Liverpool, with Councillor Sharon Connor leading the charge, has really held firm and the next tranche of lanes and interventions is still on track to be delivered in the first half of this year. The next few months will be crucial. The Tranche 2 funding is dependent on better consultation with members and stakeholders. My task is to support the politicians and officers in every way I can as they put the case for the plans.
Merseyside Cycling Campaign’s help in any guise will be vital. Lobby, cajole, beg, text message, post. Encourage.
Who would have thought this time last year that the region would be building over 60 miles of segregated bike lanes in just over a year and in some cases at the expense of motorised traffic space? A bold experiment. A little bit of ‘Ghentification’! The rollercoaster ride goes on.

Simon O’Brien

Pop-up cycle lanes in Liverpool

Liverpool City Council identified two initial cycle routes, forming an arc from Sefton Park to West Derby Road. This list was later expanded to seven routes, shown on the map. In the town centre, they announced Bold Street and Castle Street would be pedestrianised.
Despite an initial delay caused by a nationwide demand for plastic bollards, the first two cycle routes were in place by June. On returning to Liverpool in July, I took my first ride along the route. I was impressed by the feeling of safety along West Derby Road, as well as the satisfaction of cruising past a line of cars stuck at the lights. Subsequent improvements have included the ‘floating’ of car parking to protect the lane, and accommodating two lanes for traffic eastbound – whilst keeping the cycle track. However a more fundamental issue of providing no safe route to the city centre remains, which must be holding back ridership.
The construction of the third route in Liverpool started in September between the city centre and Bootle. Starting from Hatton Garden, the route runs along Vauxhall Road, Commercial Road and Stanley road as far as the border with Sefton Council. A later extension down Dale Street to the crossing of Byrom Street created a 2.4-mile route of new and upgraded cycle tracks. Together with the Regent/Dock road cycle track, the cycle network in north Liverpool is starting to emerge.
As the hot summer of 2020 moved into the autumn, councils across the country began removing pop-up cycle infrastructure, notably the hugely popular Sunrise Cycleway along the coast near Newcastle-upon-Tyne. However, Liverpool has remained supportive of cycling throughout, retaining and improving its pop-up infrastructure – not giving in to a small but vocal opposition. The transformation of Bold Street and Castle Street looks likely to stay permanent after being widely praised.
For many reasons 2020 was a year to forget, however for cycling it will go down in history as a year of great progress. Nationwide bike shops ran out of stock due to huge demand for new bicycles, with levels of cycling increasing by over 200% during the first lockdown. In Liverpool, thousands of journeys have been made on the pop-up cycle lanes, even if we do not have the 100km network promised originally, three routes are a good start. Other milestones in Liverpool last year were the completion of the Princes Avenue cycleway, the start of roadworks on The Strand and Lime Street (which include excellent cycle provision), and the rolling out of electric city hire bikes. With all this good news, 2021 will surely be another great year for walking and cycling in Liverpool.

Phillip Marshall

See more at Philip’s blog https://liverpoolcyclist.wordpress.com/

MCC AGM 2020

The Merseyside Cycling Campaign Annual General Meeting will be on Saturday 5 December at 10.15 for a 10.30 start.

Zoom link

Meeting ID: 714 875 4929
Passcode: MCC

Chairs opening remarks – Eddy Taylor
Annette Marti (Greenpeace) – Transform Transport campaign
Sustrans – Liveable Neighbourbhoods
New Cyclists (Cycle of Life)
Cycling Advocacy Network
Local campaigns for 2021
Proposed new positions including Volunteer Co-ordinator & Social Media roles
Election of Officers
Officer Reports
Area Reports (including Knowsley, Sefton, Wirral, Halton and Liverpool).

West Derby School Streets final design concepts announced

Sustrans has completed its designs for safe school streets at three schools in West Derby. 
Liverpool City Council will deliver the scheme during the next year.
Click on the links below to see the design proposals for each school:
St Mary’s CE Primary School
Mab Lane Primary School
St Paul and St Timothy’s Catholic Infant School and St Paul’s Catholic Junior.

https://www.sustrans.org.uk/our-blog/projects/2019/england/liverpool-school-neighbourhoods-in-west-derby/

Dr Bike sessions this week

Dr Bike Schedule – 21st-25th Sept 

Come and get your bike checked for FREE!

At these events you can expect mechanics to carry out a bike ‘triage’ service: fixing minor repairs and checking to make bikes safe and road worthy.  

21/09/2020 Britannia Inn 3-6pm  BikeRight!

21/09/2020 Sefton park 3-6pm Cheshire Cycles

21/09/2020 Princess Park 3-6pm Cycle of Life

21/09/2020 Tuebrook Police station 3-6pm St Helens – Pedal Power

22/09/2020 Myrtle st/Crown pk 3-6pm Cycle of Life

22/09/2020 Tuebrook Police station 3-6pm St Helens – Pedal Power

24/09/2020 Unity Youth Club 5-8pm  Cycle of Life

24/09/2020 Tuebrook Police station 3-6pm St Helens – Pedal Power

25/09/2020 Britannia Inn 3-6pm BikeRight!

25/09/2020 Sefton park 3-6pm Cheshire Cycles

BIRKENHEAD TO NEW BRIGHTON CYCLE ROUTE CONSULTATION

The first phase of consultation for the Birkenhead to New Brighton cycle route is now live. Liverpool City Region will be undertaking a second round of consultation on the detailed proposals later in the year.
For more information (including technical drawings) and to leave comments, follow the link to https://lcwip.commonplace.is/schemes/proposals/wirral/details Send your feedback by Sunday 6 September

Birkenhead Green Corridor

Wirral Council would like to hear your views on the Birkenhead Green Corridor proposals.
Download a PDF of the proposals HERE
An online presentation of the proposals will be provided by members of the project team on the dates provided below. If you would like to take part, register by contacting us at greencorridor@wirral.gov.uk confirming which meeting you would like to attend:
Wednesday 12 August 2020
Wednesday 19 August 2020
The events will run from 6pm to 7pm on both days.

https://www.wirral.gov.uk/parking-roads-and-travel/major-projects/green-corridor

Cycling for All