Pedal Press Autumn 2018 out now

Pedal Press Autumn 2018 takes a look at protected bike lanes on Merseyside.

Download it here PedalPress-Autumn2018-online

Video of Park Lane cycle path

Video of Duke Street Birkenhead  towards Birkenhead Park

Video of Duke Street from Birkenhead Park

Video of Docks Road Liverpool

Planning application for road link between Leeds St and Princes Dock

Have you noticed the planning application for a road link between Leeds St and Princes Dock? Liverpool planning ref 18F/1419.

Whereas I have no problem with the link in principle – it is necessary I would think to deal with the new developments coming on the North Docks – it looks to me like an unreconstructed highways engineering solution. Plenty of analysis of vehicular r movements but not a lot for other concerns.

Some initial thoughts are:
It looked very much like a Design Manual for Roads and Bridges (DMRB) style scheme – that unreconstructed Highway Engineer approach. It should be designed following the principles of the Manual for Streets (MfS2). The MfS principles include
Apply a user-hierarchy – with pedestrians at the top
Collaborative approach
Importance of the Community function
Inclusive environment – all ages, all abilities. Integrate not segregate
Support pedestrian and cyclist desire lines
Establish clear vision and design codes
Appropriate balance between needs of different groups
Networks of streets for permeability and connectivity
Street character types
Quality auditing process
Design for vehicle speeds to stay <20mph
Minimum of highway design features

Hierarchy of Attention
Not much sign of those above-mentioned principles here, for example the Transport Assessment starts with the vehicular transport details – suggesting that the hierarchy is not being looked at the right way round. Further on, there are lots of figures and analysis of vehicle movements; little sign of an equivalent attention to other needs.

Pedestrians’ requirements
We should expect that pedestrian activity and demand will increase very substantially as the Northern Docks opens up: there will be a lot of new accommodations of all sectors while will in itself increase footfall, without considering specific developments such as BMD Stadium, the North Docks Cultural Venue, the Cruise terminal and , it is to be hoped, an increasing tourist penetration to this area.

Looking at the pedestrian routes provided, they seem to be taking a poor second (or worse) place. Despite the generous 3m pavements, there does not appear to be a coherent pedestrian route on the south side of the Link road to Princes Dock. The link from the north side of Leeds St to the north side of the Link is convoluted.

The thought might be that there is practically no pedestrian demand coming from Gibraltar Row, but in the longer term (well within the 2029 horizon I’d think ) that triangle between Bath St and King Edward St will be redeveloped with something more in fitting with this location (and bringing in more revenue to the city by the way). Very likely there will be a lot of staff or residents or visitors depending on what gets built.

It is not enough to conclude self-congratulatorily (TA para 4.3) that “the shared cycle/footways along the link road and the proposed signalised junction with controlled pedestrian/toucan crossing will improve connectivity and safety for pedestrians and cyclists.” It might be slightly better than the poor provision for today’s few pedestrians; that doesn’t mean it will be adequate for a greatly increased number in the city it is being designed for.

It is quite alarming that the designers seem content to consider cutting out 50% of the pedestrian phases to clear traffic from the Princes Way when needed. The lesson surely that they need to find ways to reduce the amount of vehicular traffic coming from Princes Dock developments. More cycle parking and less car parking perhaps. (Not within the scope the present scheme, but certainly within the scope of the planning department.)

I am a bit concerned at the use of granite setts as the default for pedestrian surfaces – how good is this to walk on? – or push a wheelchair / pram on? They say it matches the Connectivity Phase 1 works. Has that been OK’d?

Public transport
Several of the predicted traffic flows look to come alarmingly close to 100% Degree of Saturation, and it is more alarming still to realise that the assumptions about growth in traffic do not include the proposed Bramley Moore Dock stadium (TS para 4.4). I’d suggest that this really means that the junctions will not cope.
This is not to say that the link should not be made in some form, but rather that alternatives that reduce the need for vehicular traffic should be looked at a lot more seriously. What public transport options can be provided for?

Indeed, what public transport considerations have been made at all? In the initial paragraphs, and in Appendix D, there are references to the existing bus stops and services. But nowhere is there any indication of how those services will be catered for in the proposed design. There are bus stops on Paisley St (each way), but there doesn’t seem to be space to replicate them on the new Link Road. Nor is there any suggestion how public transport on the north-south axis might be improved (this might in itself be outside the scope of the design remit) or how the necessary extra bus services for the North Docks developments might affect traffic flows, or where bus stops would best be located (which surely is within the remit).

The cycle link from Bath St to Waterloo Rd is to be welcomed. If it becomes a major cycling route (and we would hope it would with the projected volume of development proposed in the North docks) it might prove inadequate as a two-way link shared with pedestrians. The configuration of the toucan across Princes Way looks convoluted. Thought should at least be given to providing an alternative more direct cycle phase at the lights for straight-through traffic.
There does not seem to be any link from Leeds St to Princes Way. As there is a quite well-appointed cycle route along the south side of Leeds St it seems pointless not to connect up to it.

How would we expect cyclists to travel from the Strand to, say Byrom St? (A common enough requirement you’d think.) Many would prefer the steady climb up King Edward St, and thane take pot luck in getting across to eh right hand turn lane to get onto Leeds St. But this means making that difficult jump across the lane where Bath St departs . In my experience traffic here can move quite fast and be quite heavy, so there will be many who find themselves needing to make the right turn onto the link Rd. an advance stop line would be helpful for this. A (better?) alternative would be some way of facilitating that jump from the New Quay-side cycle route over to King Edward St.

Street Character
The proposal does not, cannot, make development proposals for the land adjacent. I hope that the Gibraltar Way estate will soon be replaced by something suited to this part of the city, buy meanwhile it’s sensible to include a bit of car parking at the foot of the retaining wall. I hope likewise that the plot north of the Link Road will soon be snapped up, but meanwhile a grass verge is fair.
Some more design should however go into the places between the roads and the dock estate. The rigid 2m wide pavement is clearly nonsense here. Does the pavement extend to the estate boundary, or is the space to be filled with something else? Even if it only replacing the cotoneaster and agave planting, a decision needs to be made and it will have a big effect on how people approach a whole new quarter of the city Between the lower junction and the Princes Half Tide Dock there is enough space that something special could happen. I don’t don’t know what. Amey is probably not the team to take this on. Perhaps the team responsible for the Strand reconfiguration – or another commission. In any case a decent budget needs to be found for it.

I will probably redraft this a bit to go the planners. If anyone out there has any comments before I do so I ‘m all ears.


Dai Gwynne
( copied from MCC group)

Merseyside residents gather to demand safe cycling facilities

Saturday 28 April

11:30 – 12:30

Pier Head

On Saturday, 28 April, local residents are set to gather in Liverpool before pedalling across the city to the Pier Head, where incoming council candidates will give their pledges to improve the city’s cycling facilities.
The event is led by Merseyside Cycling Campaign and is one of twelve events taking place ahead of the local elections as part of Cycling UK’s ‘Vote Bike’ campaign. Tom Guha, Cycling UK’s Infrastructure Campaigner, said: “That at so many people are taking to the streets to demonstrate support for cycling shows that cycling is electorally popular. Hopefully candidates will listen and, if successful, act to encourage the growth of healthier, happier and more active places.”
Derek Gould, of Cycling UK Merseyside said: “Cycling is the most natural, economical, health-giving and environmentally friendly way to travel at speed around our cities. Yet our streets are congested by motor vehicles, creating a perception that cycling must be risky. In truth, cycling with a knowledge of how our streets work in our favour is pretty safe and endows the cyclist with a hard-to-achieve level of fitness. Considering that every bike is also one less polluting car in the traffic jam, cycling can work for us all.”

Ropewalks STEP Scheme public consultation

Public consultation event in The Box at FACT, 88 Wood St, Liverpool L1 4DQ, on Monday 19th March 2018 from 2pm to 8pm.

Approximate start: January 2019
Approximate end: November 2019

The Ropewalks STEP Scheme will be split into two phases:

  • Phase 1 – Bold Street and Seel Street.
  • Phase 2 – Wood Street, Fleet Street, Slater Street, Colquitt Street.

Funding of £4.5m has been secured for Phase 1 which is part of Liverpool City Region’s Sustainable Transport Enhancement Package (STEP). Growth Deals has provided £3m funding.

As part of the proposals there are opportunities to improve the area including:

  • The pedestrianisation of the full length of Bold Street.
  • The introduction of a café culture to the area.
  • Upgrading the footway and carriageway.
  • Installing new and improved seating and lighting.
  • Planting new trees.
  • Improving safety for pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Reversing the one-way traffic system on Seel Street, running from Gradwell Street to Berry Street.
  • Closing Seel Street between Colquitt Street and Slater Street at night time.

It is anticipated that our proposals will reduce the amount of traffic collisions, improve the connections to and around this area of Liverpool, and support and help attract future investment.

Who is your councillor?

It is important that we let our councillors know what our concerns are, where we think they should focus their efforts and so on. Of course there might also be situations where we want to give positive feedback.

We’ve created a page to quickly find contact details for your local councillor, for any ward within the Liverpool City Region, all based on your postcode. If any of your councillors are on twitter and we have found them there, we will also give you a link to their twitter page.

Some councillors are quite active on social media like twitter, and it is a great way to contact them and encourage a response to your query or comment that is immediately publicized.

Please check it out on our “Find Your Councillor” page.

Liverpool Local Plan consultation

Draft Comments on Draft Liverpool Local Plan for Merseyside Cycling Campaign

Liverpool City Region Combined Authority emerging Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP) and existing Rights of Way Improvement Plan 2018-2028.
• The LCWIP is mentioned in Policy TP1 and TP5 which we should support along with LCR Transport Strategy for Growth and LCR Local Journeys Strategy.
• There is no mention anywhere of the LCR Rights of Way Improvement Plan.
• Section 2 Planning Context should also refer to the emerging Liverpool City Region Local Cycling and Wallking Infrastructure Plan and the LCR Rights of Way Improvement Plan.
• Paragraph 14.1 the introduction to the chapter on Sustainable Transport should mention the LCR LCWIP and the LCR Rights of Way Improvement Plan and the economic, health, social and environmental benefits of cycling and walking such as reduced congestion, cleaner air, reduced absenteeism, reduced healthcare costs etc.
• Para 2.12 on the Liverpool City Region Local Transport Plan for Growth should explicitly mention that plan’s promotion of cycling and walking in some way
• Policy TP2 Transport Assessments Part 3. states that “Development proposals will only be permitted where:… ….d. The proposal makes provision for walking, cycling and the use of public transport;” This seems good and should be supported
• Policy TP5 Cycling requires development to demonstrate a positive impact on cycling etc. Including undertaking cycle audits “to ensure that local roads are safe, attractive and comfortable for all cyclists”. Seems a pretty robust policy.
• The policy should also cover upgrading the cycle network off-site such as by improving nearby cycle paths or junctions etc. And that identification of such off-site improvements should be included in cycle -audits.

There is a consultation open day at Central Library Thursday 1st March 11am – 7pm

Public consultation for this document finishes at midnight on the 9 March 2018

Document can be found here

Liverpool City Centre Connectivity – Lime Street & Brownlow Hill

Comments needed by 15th February 2018
Download PDF plans here

There are plans to improve traffic flow across Liverpool city centre whilst also providing improved cycle links and a better environment for pedestrians.

To make the Lime Street Station / St Georges Hall area more accessible for pedestrians, it is proposed to reduce the number of traffic lanes on Lime Street, St George’s Place & St John’s Lane to a single lane in each direction with the carriageway widening at junctions to incorporate additional right turn lanes. The section of Lime Street between Elliot Street & Renshaw Street will be a one-way single lane with traffic flowing from Elliot Street to Renshaw Street.
Roe Street (Queens Square bus station) will remain no entry except for buses. The existing access only restriction on the service road section of Roe Street outside the Royal Court will also remain.
As part of the works, Lime Street is to be closed between St John’s Lane and Elliot Street. This is to allow pedestrians greater opportunity to move between Lime Street Station and the St John’s Centre and beyond into the city centre. Access to the St John’s Centre Car Park, the Holiday Inn and other businesses from Elliot Street will be maintained. Access to the St John’s Centre Car Park from the north (London Road & St George’s Lane) will be permitted for cars only via a one-way, single lane access from St George’s Lane to the car park.
The existing bus lane on St John’s Lane, operating from 4pm to 6pm Monday to Saturday is to remain.

Cycle Route
With the number of traffic lanes reduced along the route, it is proposed that cycle facilities be introduced to make the area more accessible and permeable for cyclists.  A segregated cycle route is proposed along the west side of Lime Street, outside St George’s Hall, to tie in to a proposed cycle route along Churchill Way flyover linking up with a similar facility on Tithebarn Street.
In addition, a segregated cycle route is proposed on the north-east side of Lime Street between Skelhorne Street & Renshaw Street to link into a proposed cycle lane on Brownlow Hill.
Both of these segregated cycle facilities will be two-way and cyclists will be segregated from traffic and pedestrians by kerblines either side of the route.
In order to allow pedestrians to cross the narrow one way section of carriageway between St Georges Place and Elliot Street, two areas of shared footway / cycleway are proposed.

Toucan Crossing Facilities
To allow cyclists to access the new cycle route and cross at busy junctions it is proposed to introduce four Toucan crossings. These are to be introduced in the following locations:
•The crossing of Renshaw Street at its junction with Brownlow Hill
•The crossing of Brownlow Hill at its junction with Renshaw Street & Ranelagh Place
•The crossing of Copperas Hill at its junction with Lime Street & Ranelagh Place
•The crossing of Lime Street just north of its junction with St George’s Place
Areas of shared use footway will be required around these Toucan crossings to allow cyclists access to the new facilities.

Access Only Restriction
To reduce the traffic through the area it is proposed that traffic proceeding along Lime Street from the north end must turn onto St George’s Place and vice versa. The only exception to this would be vehicles wishing to access the St John’s Centre Car Park which would be able to do so, but this route would have an access only restriction on it to prevent general through traffic from using it.
Access to the car park and the Holiday Inn Hotel will be maintained from Skelhorne Street and Elliot Street. Vehicles dropping off at the hotel will be able to exit the area towards Renshaw Street via Lime Street. There will be no through route from the Elliot Street / Skelhorne Street end of Lime Street to towards St John’s Lane or the north section of Lime Street.

Waiting & Loading Restrictions
With the number of traffic lanes reduced it is important to keep the carriageway free of parked vehicles to ensure traffic can flow. To achieve this, it is proposed that no waiting at any time and no loading at any time restrictions be introduced throughout the scheme area. The only exceptions to these restrictions would be a new loading bay on the south west side of Lime Street (south east of Elliot Street), and an existing loading bay on the south-east side of Skelhorne Street. Both of these bays will operate from 8am to 6pm every day.
The majority of these restrictions are already in place.
Proposals relating to the Lime Street Area are shown on the attached drawings, numbers CO00205283-LIM-C-01 & 02.


Waiting & Loading Restrictions
With the exception of the existing loading bay which is to remain, the full length of Brownlow Hill from Great Newton Street in an easterly direction to its junction with Mount Pleasant, will have no waiting at any time and no loading at any time restrictions.
West of Great Newton Street, to the junction with Renshaw Street, the existing waiting and loading restrictions already in place along Brownlow Hill will remain unchanged. To allow businesses to load and unload goods, the existing loading bays are also to remain.

Cycle Route
It is proposed to introduce a cycle lane on the north side of Brownlow Hill. To allow access to existing bus stops, the cycle lane will be introduced as an advisory lane from its junction with Ranelagh Place /Renshaw Street for a distance of 100m. The cycle lane will then be a mandatory lane to its junction with Great Newton Street. An advisory cycle lane highlights an area of carriageway intended for use by cyclists but motor vehicles may also enter. A mandatory cycle lane is for use by cycles only, any motor vehicle entering the lane is committing an offence. At regular intervals along the mandatory cycle lane, bollards will be introduced to demarcate the lane and protect cyclists. Beyond Great Newton Street, cyclists can continue on street, but no cycle lane will be marked.
Whilst no cycle lane will be introduced on the south side of the carriageway, the presence of cyclists will be highlighted by laying cycle symbols on the carriageway.

Comments on the proposals by 15th February 2018 to

Cycling for All