GoBike committee members Joel, Peter and Tricia were at the Scottish Greens’ conference venue, Maryhill Burgh Hall, Glasgow today to impress on them the 3 Walk Cycle Vote asks for the Local Elections in May:
Investment: Provide sustained, long term investment in both cycling and walking, reaching 10% of the transport budget
Infrastructure: Build and maintain dedicated cycling infrastructure suitable for people of all ages and abilities
Local action: To solve the main local barriers to active travel, as identified by residents and businesses
The first photo includes MSP Alison Johnstone (in the white jacket) and, next to her Glasgow Councillor Martha Wardrop. The second photo shows us with the Green candidates for Glasgow City Council for the May elections, including Glasgow Councillor Martin Bartos in the back row.
If you have the opportunity to meet any of your candidates, please ask them their views on the 3 asks!
We want, and need, better cycling facilities and a better environment for walking and cycling and the candidates, and campaigners, for the council elections in May will be at these conferences, so we need to get the message to them. We have Walk, Cycle, Vote flyers, and GoBike flyers and we now need volunteers to meet up and hand them out. Please come and join us! Meet up as below:
Conservatives: just outside the SECC, meet up to the left, the river side, of the main entrance at 12:45 on both days (03 and 04 March) and we will flyer from 1-2pm as delegates come out at lunch time.
Greens: meet up outside the Burgh Hall, on Maryhill Road, at 09:30 (on 11 March) and we will flyer until just after 10:00 and we will meet again at 12:45 to give out our leaflets over the lunch break.
Please e-mail email@example.com if you can to confirm your attendance.
Last year over 4000 people cycled from all over Scotland to loby the parliament for a cycle friendly Scotland.
Whilst there has been some improvement, there is much more that can be done.
Go Bike encourages all its members and supporters to travel to Edinburgh for this Pedal on Parliament event.
Saturday 26 April 2014 – Pedal on Parliament. Meet 11.30am for 12 noon start, The Meadows, Edinburgh.
Glasgow Feeder Ride: Meet 7.15am for 7.30am prompt start, George Square (north side), Glasgow.
Go Bike is holding a special ride to get from Glasgow to Edinburgh. Note that the pace of this ride will be somewhat faster than our regular cycle rides and it will follow main roads rather that cycle routes or quiet routes. The aim is to arrive in Edinburgh before midday, in time for the Pedal on Parliament ride. Ride info is also on the cycle rides page
Glasgow Road Cycling Meetup (GRCM) are joining us for a 7.30 departure from George Sq. So far they have 15 riders signed up for this event, so we’ll form a large group. Last year we took around 4 hours to get to the Meadows from George Sq, going via the A89 & A8, with a coffee stop in Bathgate. Average speed 12.5mph.
Last year most of the GRCM riders cycled back to Glasgow. The A89/A8 route provides the option to get a train at many points along the way.
For those who prefer a later start, shorter ride or slower pace Belles on Bikes are getting a train to Linlithgow and cycling from there into Edinburgh.
Thank you to the 50+ people who came along to tonights Go Bike! open meeting.
We heard Sue Hilder, Access Officer and Andrew Brown of the sustainable transport team, both from Glasgow City Council, give presentations and answer questions on their respective areas of expertise about Core Paths and the City Centre Transport Strategy. The evening finished with an opportunity for everyone to add their comments to maps of the city centre and the existing and proposed cycle routes. Thank you to Sue and Andrew for their valuable contributions to the evening and event.
Glasgow City Council is proposing new rules for the management of parks, see: http://www.glasgow.gov.uk/parkmanagementrules – and note that “park” has a wide meaning and includes George Square in the city centre. 2 of the rules, in particular, are of interest to cyclists.
Clause 1.4 of the proposed rules refers to an “Unauthorised Gathering” which means any gathering, meeting or assembly in a park of 20 or more people, which has not had the prior written consent of the Executive Director of Land and Environmental Services, however it was organised.
This has implications for any group, not only of cyclists, who assemble in an area deemed to be a park, prior to setting off on a cycle ride, or something such as a trip to an art gallery. For example, cyclists from Glasgow arranged to meet in George Square last year prior to cycling to Edinburgh for the Pedal on Parliament event. Go Bike, since it achieved the right for cyclists to cycle through the city parks some 25 years ago, has led several rides through parks, the latest being on Sunday 05 January, when 30 of us did an excellent cycle tour of the parks on the southside of the city. We stopped several times to regroup and, finally, we admired the view once we had all made it to the high point, the flag pole, in Queen’s Park. 30 of us “gathering” together in this way – without the prior consent of the Executive Director of Land and Environmental Services – could thus be considered to be “unauthorised“.
Clause 7.2, second sentence of the proposals states that “Cycle speed should not exceed 5 miles per hour.” Anyone who has tried cycling alongside a pedestrian will know that it is very unstable to cycle at such low speeds; even children, or adults, learning to cycle will be going at speeds above 5mph – if only to try and keep their balance. The average “moving speed” of the Go Bike ride through the parks last month was 7.6 miles per hour, with a maximum of 16.3 mph. A limit of 5mph, if and when enforced, would thus remove our hard-won right to cycle in parks and other parts of the city covered by these new rules.
Go Bike proposes that, if the City Council wishes to ban some types of “Unauthorised Gathering” then they should be specific about the type of behaviour they wish to ban. A blanket ban covers not only cyclists but a group of families meeting together.
Most cyclists cycle at speeds appropriate to their surroundings so the second sentence of Clause 7.2 quoted above should be removed leaving the clause as: “Cyclists must maintain proper control of the cycle and ensure they do not endanger other road users.” Those who don’t would be in contravention of Clause 2.1 “No one shall in any park: (c) commit any act of anti-social behaviour in any park,”
Thus, there is a plethora of rules drawn up to cover almost any eventuality. The Council would do far better to employ park wardens to look after and maintain these “dear, green places” in our city.
Andy Preece e-mailed the Go Bike yahoo group on 16 December to inform people of the link http://www.glasgow.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=4216
to 2 Traffic Regulation Orders relating to the Fastlink Bus scheme which is proposed to run from the city centre out to the Southern General Hospital. The 2 Orders relate to the section from the Finnieston Bridge (otherwise known as the Clyde Arc Bridge or Squinty Bridge) to Whitefield Road and Whitefield Road to Elder Street. Some of you may have looked at these and/or you may have been in the Clyde Arc, Pacific Drive or Govan areas and seen that work is already proceeding on this segregated bus link.
Objections to the Orders must be received by Friday 24 January and should be sent to:
Project Management and Design,
Land and Environmental Services,
231 George Street,
Glasgow, G1 1RX
(FAO Brian Hubbert)
by post or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The proposals detail the segregated bus link going over the Clyde Arc Bridge and along Pacific Drive; the bus lanes will be for the bus only, ie no taxis or cycles will be allowed in these lanes. This means that all vehicles, apart from the buses, will be restricted to one lane in each direction over the Clyde Arc Bridge and along Pacific Drive. The Orders give no details of cycle routes and no information about the National Cycle Network Routes 7 and 75. However, information on proposed cycle routes was given at the GCC Glasgow’s Strategic Plan for Cycling: Transport Sub Group meeting on Tuesday 14 January, which was attended by members of the Go Bike Committee. It is proposed that the cycle route will be along Congress Road, over Bells Bridge and then back on a shared footway to cross Pacific Drive via a Toucan crossing to reach Govan Road and then on to Brand Street. For cyclists heading towards Govan the proposed route is along a shared footway on one side only of Pacific Drive.
Thus, although cyclists will not be banned from the Clyde Arc Bridge, Pacific Drive, Govan Road and Golspie Street, there will be a strong deterrent not to cycle there. The segregated bus lanes are in the centre of the road over the Clyde Arc Bridge and along Pacific Drive and Govan Road as far as Burndyke Court (ie the start of the straight part of Govan Road near the river) where they become kerbside for most of the remainder of the route through Govan. Where they are kerbside, cyclists will have to cycle in the outside lane with all other road users.
This means a big reduction in safety for cyclists going from the Broomielaw towards Govan by way of the Clyde Arc Bridge and for cyclists who live adjacent to the route. The additional cycle route information given on Tuesday does not give reassurance that the needs of cyclists in the area are being catered for; it is already well-known that the shared footway past the hotel near the Clyde Arc Bridge is inadequate and the route via Bells Bridge adds quite a distance to the cycle journey either to Govan or to Cessnock.
Go Bike is amending its original draft letter of objection further to receipt of the cycle route information on Tuesday and this will be posted on the Go Bike website when it has been submitted but we encourage all our members and supporters to write or e-mail in by Friday 24 January if you share our concerns about this lack of recognition of the needs of cyclists.
Are you aware that the use of cycle rickshaws on the streets of Glasgow and to carry spectators to and from Commonwealth Games venues is under serious threat? They are used extensively in other cities, including Edinburgh, so why not in Glasgow?
At the moment Glasgow City Council is applying taxi testing structures to pedicabs and refusing licenses due to alleged safety concerns. This is despite the fact that for over 4 years rickshaws have been licensed and in service in the city without issue. Apparently the Council has now turned its back on rickshaws for reasons best known to themselves.
9 licence applications have currently been refused and, as a test case, one owner has appealed this refusal, with a court case due to be heard at Glasgow Sheriff court on Monday 06 January. The City Council has now instructed Counsel, ie employed an Advocate, at not inconsiderable expense to council tax payers, to speak in court. To have any chance of success, the appellant now has to do the same, at his own expense.
Owen O’Neill of Evolution Rickshaws has tirelessly campaigned to get rickshaws into use in Glasgow and now your support is needed. The Commonwealth Games, lauded as a “green” games will be in the city next year, but there will be no green public transport to the venues if the case on 06 January fails.
The City Council’s Licensing Regulatory Committee oversees all taxi and rickshaw licences. Please e-mail the Convenor of the Committee, Councillor Chris Kelly, to let him know what a disaster it will be for the green image of Glasgow, and Scotland, if these licences are not granted.