After consultation with the engineers of the plan, the following responses have been received from them. This is still not going to be a usable cycle route.
Why is there not a direct route from Irvine Street through the village development to Minshull Street?
The direct pedestrian route from Irvine Street to Minshull Street has a steep gradient that is unsuitable for a cycle route. There will be a pedestrian route running through the village that cyclists may dismount and use, however this will include steps going down from Irvine Street to Minshull Street to enable the provision of a suitable pedestrian gradient.
The plan doesn’t provide enough detail and is inadequate for consultation purposes. Need more details such as cycle lane dimensions.
The width of the segregated cycle lane is 3m throughout, allowing 1.5m for each direction. The pedestrian footway will have a 2m width throughout.
Concerns raised regarding the access points into Paddington Village from Minshull Street & Irvine Street. Respondents are concerned that pedestrians and cyclists will face difficulty in using the crossing points safely and believe that the route should be continuous throughout.
Once the Paddington Village development is complete the access points on Minshull Street and Irvine Street aren’t anticipated to receive a high volume of traffic. For safety reasons, the access into the undercroft area (on Minshull Street) needs to be given vehicle priority over pedestrians and cyclists, to eliminate the likelihood of rear end shunts by vehicles entering Minshull Street from Mt Vernon Road. It is accepted that asking cyclists to “give-way” at this point will add slightly to cycling journey times to/from the City Centre. But it is also recognised that the vehicles using the undercroft access from Minshull Street will have arrived via highways of a significant nature (Low Hill, Mt Vernon Road are both wide carriageway forming part of the main vehicle route into and out of the city centre from the east) and will not be expecting to “give way” from Grove Street. This is a safety concern which we felt needed to be recognised in the design if the cycleway. The access on Irvine Street will become a site access during construction works, and will initially be constructed as a carriageway. This could be subject to further review when more is known about the intended use of the adjacent development plot. In the meantime, it has been determined that uncontrolled crossings will be safer for both pedestrians and cyclists to use.
A cycle group requested that the cycle route should have priority over turning traffic at the access points into Paddington Village from Minshull Street & Irvine Street, with road humps used to slow traffic and alert them to their requirement to give way.
The previous answer is relevant to this query. Very low volumes of traffic are anticipated from Irvine Street – at present there are only 4 blue badge bays and servicing access via this proposed access point. The future form of this access point could be amended, subject to the intended use of the adjacent development plot. The access from Grove Street will serve an undercroft and be used by servicing vehicles. Because this access is very close to the turning lane from Mt Vernon Road into Grove Street, we feel it is necessary to give motorised vehicles accessing the undercroft priority over pedestrians and cyclists (for safety reasons we cannot have vehicles waiting in this location on Grove Street).
The plan seems to create conflict points between pedestrians and cyclists where people will be standing in the cycle lane waiting to cross the road
It is standard design practice for segregated cycle lanes to be positioned nearest the carriageway and pedestrians at the back of footway. Should pedestrians be waiting at pedestrian crossing points, cyclists can utilise the shared area to bypass them, and this is also a commonly used feature.
Where will the proposed cycle route tie in with existing facilities?
The facilities will tie-in with the on-road signed cycle route on Irvine Street (via Mason Street, to the east of Paddington Village). The cycle lane will end at Smithdown Lane traffic signal controlled junction, where cyclists will be able to re-join the carriageway. This junction will be improved to include an “early green” stage for cyclists moving between Smithdown Lane and Brownlow Hill. Plans for Brownlow Hill including provision for cyclists are part of the City Centre Connectivity proposals (see www.liverpool.gov.uk/betterroads)
Are the proposals using existing footways or is part of the road being taken? Why is there no NOI for the footpath that has already been removed on Minshull Street?
The existing footway closures are subject to Temporary Traffic Regulation Orders and are required during the main Paddington construction works. The new shared used areas, segregated cycle lanes and footways will be created from the existing footway and verge – overall no carriageway or footway will be lost.
The existing cycle route connecting Albert Grove to Mason street should be improved.
The new cycle route will provide access directly into the Paddington Central development area at various key points along its route – improving cycle access to the new development site is a fundamental aspect of the proposals. There are no plans to amend the existing cycle route at present but this could be looked at in a future phase of the works (Paddington South). Part of the City Council’s allocation of the Local Growth Fund Sustainable Transport Enhancement Programme is currently looking at improving this route.
Introduce a cycle lane within the carriageway on Mount Vernon Road.
An off carriageway cycle facility is safer for cyclists. Due to the nature of Mount Vernon Road less experienced cyclists would likely be put off using an on-street carriageway facility. Mount Vernon Road forms part of the designated freight route into and out of the City Centre and is a key element in the Wavertree Road/Picton Road bus corridor which carries significant bus flows. This particular section of highway is also subject to significant “weaving” manoeuvres by motorists selecting their destination on the approach to the city centre at the junction of Mt Vernon Road / Grove Street / West Derby Street. The opportunity to provide a 3m wide, fully segregated, off-carriageway cycleway is therefore considered the safest and more appropriate option to capture the needs of all cyclists, as opposed to providing an on-carriageway cycle lane.
How will the cycle lane and footway be segregated?
The segregation between pedestrians and the cycle lane will be achieved with the introduction of a raised rib edging kerb built into the footway. This will be raised by 20mm to alert blind or partially sighted pedestrians to the presence of the cycle track. The cycleway will be finished with a bituminous surfacing, (black) whilst the edging kerb and footway will be paved with high quality concrete paving units (light grey in colour). The contrast in colour between cycleway and footway will be significant, and obvious.
The route should be a continuous shared use area for pedestrians and cyclists
Unsegregated shared use areas are proposed only where necessary to avoid mixing vulnerable people such as the blind or partially sighted with cyclists. The route will be segregated as much as possible
Thousands of people use the footway during term time, cyclists will be forced to use Mount Vernon Road at busy periods.
There will be alternative routes through the centre of the Paddington Village development which pedestrians are more likely to use as more direct. These will ease the pressure on the footway and allow for a safer route for cyclists. The cycle route will be fully segregated over as much of the route as possible.
Merseyside Cycling Campaign has discussed the Paddington Village plan that has been circulated.
Our main concern is that the plan circulated does not give enough information for us to make any meaningful comments and is inadequate for consultation purposes.
We need to see a lot more detail about access to the Paddington Village site and be advised of dimensions of the cycle path, traffic lights etc.
On the limited plan that was circulated, we can see is that there are access roads cutting across the cycling and pedestrian paths from Minshull Street and Irving Street. Pedestrians and cyclists are to somehow fend for themselves crossing in the path of delivery lorries. This is entirely inadequate, there needs to be a continuous prioritised and raised cycle and pedestrian route at these points.
The plan also seems to have created conflict points between pedestrians and cyclists where people will be standing in the cycle lane waiting to cross the road. This is bad design.
Merseyside has the worst statistics for pedestrian and cyclist casualties in the country, these vulnerable road users need protecting. This plan does not, as claimed, “provide a safe route for cyclists”.
Comments by 22 January to Shaun.Ali@amey.co.uk