Off-road cycle track gets go-ahead for A602 scheme

Initial plans for the A602 improvement scheme did not include an off-road cycle path. Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) argued that since plans pre-dated adoption of the new Local Transport Plan (LTP4) they need not follow it’s guidance. The scheme required the granting of a Side Roads Order which cycling groups objected to, offering to drop the objection only if plans were modified to take into account the needs of cyclists. Fortunately this lobbying was successful and an off-road cycle track was added to the scheme, although it depended on the granting of a planning application.

On 22 Oct HCC announced that the cycle track had been given the go-ahead by the Local Planning Authority – see announcement.

LCC Report on Micromobility

On 2 June, London Cycling Campaign published a research paper titled E-scooters & Cycle Tracks: new LCC report on microbility in which they argued that e-scooters and other micro mobility technologies should be made road-legal according to strict requirements and have access to cycle infrastructure.

Whatever you think about the issue it seems clear that it will have to be addressed – it is like the wild west out there! The fact that it is currently not legal to ride an e-scooter on the road or on the pavement seems to be no deterrent to their adoption. Enforcement appears to be non-existent, as is the case with e-bikes exceeding the 250W power limit.

New DfT regulations came into force on 4 July allowing trials of rental e-scooters. These trials are designed to help understand whether the devices reduce motor traffic, as well as their impacts on safety for their users and others. It will be interesting to see the results but with personal e-scooters appearing everywhere it looks like the horse has already bolted.

Announcements and Consultations Galore

A new CycleHerts blog post was well overdue and there is plenty to talk about. Our April meeting was cancelled due to Covid-19 so we had to organise stuff by email, including engagement with the process of allocating funds from the DfT Emergency Active Travel Fund. We have had a number of issues with this, see for example our Chair’s response to Hertfordshire County Council on the subject.

Continue reading

South Central Hertfordshire Growth and Transport Plan – Response from CycleHerts

CycleHerts member organisations have been busy responding to the South Central Growth and Transport Plan. The public engagement closed on 30 March 2020 and we submitted a couple of response documents. PDF versions are available on the CycleHerts website:

Transport for New Homes Charter

Transport for New Homes believes that everyone should have access to attractive housing, located and designed to ensure that people do not need to use or own cars to live a full life. They have produced a single-page Transport for New Homes Charter, dedicated to the memory of Simon Norton, sponsor of Transport for New Homes.

CycleHerts response to A414 Corridor Strategy

The CycleHerts response to the A414 Corridor Consultation is now available on the CycleHerts website. CycleHerts only made general comments, but this document also includes detailed comments from St Albans Cycle Campaign on the proposals for cycling in the segments covering Hemel Hempstead, St Albans, and connections to St Albans.

WelHatCycling submitted detailed comments on the segments covering Welwyn Hatfield, which are available on the WelHatCycling website.

Smarter Cambridge Transport

At our last meeting we had a presentation about Sustainable Travel Towns, which are a key part of Hertfordshire County Council’s Local Travel Plan. Anyone looking to put together a bid for their town might want to take a look at Smarter Cambridge Transport, a team of over 20 unpaid volunteers whose agenda is about “seeking out, developing and promoting the optimal balance of transport-related ideas for making Cambridge and the surrounding region a great place to live, work and study”. Lots of interesting articles there.

First Meeting of 2019

The first CycleHerts meeting of 2019 was held on Thursday 24 January at St Albans Council Offices and was well attended, with 4 people from Hertfordshire County Council, 4 from State Albans Cycling Campaign, 2 from WelHatCycling and 1 each from Spokes, Start Valley CTC and Sustrans. We had three presentations:

  • Lindsey Lucas (HCC) on the A414 Corridor Study
  • Trevor Mason (HCC) on Sustainable Travel Towns
  • Michael Melnyczuk (Sustrans) on the NCN Review

Minutes of the meeting are available online.

Low Traffic Neighbourhoods and Safer Streets

London Cycling Campaign and Living Streets have produced an excellent guide to Low Traffic Neighbourhoods.

Interesting to compare it with the 2014 Sustrans policy briefing on their Campaign for Safer Streets.

Operation Velo to Target Close Passing in Cambridge

On Feb 22nd the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Road Policing Unit announced the launch of Operation Velo which will be targeting, amongst other things, unsafe passing of cyclists. Initially this will be launched in Cambridge City Centre but there are plans to roll it out across the county as well as Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.

CycleHerts has been lobbying for a close pass initiative in Hertfordshire for some time and has been compiling a map showing stretches of road where cyclists are reporting frequent close passing.