Impact of Boris Bike Routes “Must be Measured”

Local councillors,church and business representatives met on site to discuss the problems created by the controversial pop- up cycle track that runs from Queens Rd through to Talbot St on the other side of town.

Councillor officers listened to concerns but explained that the government had not allowed them adequate time to consult on the routes before encouraging them to introduce them. However, no substantial change was promised by the Council in the short term.

A review of the routes in 6 months though was promised.

Cllr.Pat Keith said, “ This scheme has been introduced without any consultation with local councillors , local residents or businesses and it’s scarcely surprising it’s throwing up many unanticipated problems. It’s in everybody’s interest to flag them up now.”

John Pugh , Dukes Ward councillor expressed scepticism about the promise to review.
“These hastily planned Boris Bike Tracks that the government have decreed will need to be fairly evaluated. That means saying now at the start what the main objectives are and how we will measure them. To be fair to everyone the Council should make clear what success and what failure looks like.

That must include looking at business and employment impacts as well as environmental effects. Churches are worried about parishioners, wedding and funerals, the school about access, the LittleTheatre about patronage and businesses about customers. Much of this can be measured as easily as the numberof additional cyclists.

Vic Foulds, owner of the Baytree Hotel , Queens Rd said , “It would be shocking if business and employment impacts were negative and dramatic, and the increase in cycling was minimal .That’s why collecting the data is so important.”