Bollard-protected cycle lanes begin to crop up across London

A labyrinth of bollard-protected cycle lanes begins to crop up across London in attempt to promote a new ‘golden age of cycling’

  • Mayfair’s prestigious Park Lane is the latest road to be lined with new bollards 
  • Cycling is being encouraged to avoid commuters cramming on to busy Tubes  
  • Public transport capacity in London has been severely cut since the lockdown
  • The government has also pledged £2billion funding for UK’s cycling network 

Miles of new cycle lanes are springing up around London as part of plans to avoid commuters cramming on to public transport during the pandemic.

Mayfair’s prestigious Park Lane is the latest road to be lined with shiny black and white bollards to allow bikers safe passage through busy city traffic.

Famously home to upmarket hotels and prime real estate – and being the second-most expensive spot on the Monopoly board – Park Lane also provides a major thoroughfare through the capital.    

Sadiq Khan is overseeing the rapid construction of a cycling network using temporary infrastructure to reduce crowding on Tubes and buses.

Mayfair’s prestigious Park Lane is the latest road to be lined with shiny black and white bollards to allow bikers safe passage through busy city traffic

A worker puts the finishing touches to a pop-up cycle lane in Park Lane, London, as part of the Mayor’s StreetSpace programme 

Sadiq Khan is overseeing the rapid construction of a cycling network using temporary infrastructure to reduce crowding on Tubes and buses

London Underground capacity has been severely slashed and is only operating a fraction of pre-lockdown services as 7,000 TfL staff have been furloughed and a fifth are self-isolating.

Although public transport usage has plummeted during the lockdown, alarming scenes of rammed carriages have been witnessed as Londoners steadily go back to work.

Both the Mayor and the government have begged commuters to stay off public transport to prevent the network becoming infection hotbeds.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has pledged £2billion to shore up cycling routes, starting with £250million emergency infrastructure funding.

And in the capital, Mr Khan is putting into action a StreetSpace scheme to drum up a drive in cycling after predicting public transport capacity will be down 80 per cent even as lockdown is eased.      

Famously home to upmarket hotels and prime real estate – and being the second-most expensive spot on the Monopoly board – Park Lane also provides a major thoroughfare through the capital

Mr Khan said: ‘I’m determined to give Londoners more safe and sustainable alternatives to travelling by car, especially when our public transport system is under strain due to Covid-19. We’re creating essential new cycleways across our city.’

A cycle lane was already in place in Hyde Park – which is adjacent to Park Lane – but there have been safety concerns about cyclists and walkers being too close to each other.

The Mayor’s walking and cycling commissioner Will Norman said the new cycle lane is ‘fantastic’ and will make it ‘safer for more people to cycle and socially distance in London’.

But the push to increase cycling has come under attack from Tories, who claim it is ludicrous to suggest millions of Tube journeys can be replaced by bike rides – especially for workers commuting into central London from outer zones.   

People ride bicycles in a pop-up cycle lane in Park Lane, London, today

Although public transport usage has plummeted during the lockdown, alarming scenes of rammed carriages have been witnessed as Londoners steadily go back to work

Under plans to make the capital more accessible to cyclists, cars and taxis are set to be banned from some of the busiest road.

The City of London Corporation claims closing major routes through the financial district will be ‘pivotal’ to keeping people safe during the pandemic despite the government’s advice being clear that: ‘You are very unlikely to be infected if you walk past another person in the street’.

Transport chiefs want to impose 12 or 24-hour closures for cars and divert buses off its main routes including Cannon Street, Poultry, Lombard Street, Old Broad Street and Threadneedle Street, home to the Bank of England. 

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