Events and updates from the city and future plans for North Lanarkshire.
In this Digest there are consultation events for areas either side of the M8. There’s a return to pre-pandemic plans for a few City Ways. Also, adding paths and removing the precinct in Motherwell.
If you’re in the city, see Andy’s three infrastructure routes around Glasgow to take in Spaces for People infrastructure. He’s also started to inform GoBike about closures and diversions; if you hear of any please do let us know.
Looking further ahead towards spring, and an election, Pedal on Parliament have news about their events in April.
Quite a bumper bundle for you today, but 2 of our significant concerns have raised their heads again. Firstly, side roads on cycle lanes – we need cycle lanes to continue across side roads, just as in the feature photo with this Digest. If a child in the Netherlands is able to cycle safely across a side road, a child in Glasgow should be able to too. Secondly, contraflow cycling – when cars are going too fast or more on-road parking is needed the first line of response is to make a street one-way, even for bikes. What have we done wrong? Why should we have to make big detours? Do read on for the details of all the current issues.
As our Digest enters not only its second half-century, but a new decade, this seems a good time to encourage any of you out there who are not yet GoBike members to join us. GoBike is only as strong as its members. We are people who recognise the need for good cycle infrastructure and so we campaign for it. We receive no public funding, have no paid employees, and are run entirely by volunteers, but we do have enthusiastic members who are pleased to get involved and/or pay our minimum fee of £5 per year (and many pay more). Do please join us but also read on for the news, including the long-awaited Byres Road TROs, we have for you.
We object to the permanent introduction of taxis to all 4 lanes of the Finnieston/Squinty/Clyde Arc Bridge – where is the active travel space? – and we learn that traffic calming schemes are a one-stage consultation with no Traffic Regulation Order. Plus, as desks are cleared for the holidays – a break for some – we have a stack of feedback for you.
Good news in this issue with the roll-out of 20mph in Glasgow, the National Cycle Route in Glasgow Green and the South West City Way, see Section 3, and we look forward to cycle lanes to Glasgow’s newest railway station at Robroyston, but do read on for lots, lots more with mention of South and North Lanarkshire, East Dunbartonshire and East Renfrewshire as well as the big city.
GoBike calls for a drastic overhaul on gritting priorities from Glasgow City Council. Almost 50% of Glaswegians don’t have access to a private car. For them walking and cycling is not active travel, but is how they get around. Transport Poverty is a real factor to a number of people in this city.
Last week saw ice return to Glasgow. At the same time the focus of getting Glaswgians to participate in active travel seemed to go out of the window. Footpath and cycle lanes were ice rinks. In the light of lots of disquiet from our members about the unjust priorities the council have set for gritting, we have decided it is time for action.
Following our GoBike Board of Shame stunt on the SWCW in December, Glasgow City Council have started moving into action on effecting the required repairs and improving the standard of maintenance on the segregated cycle lanes of the South West City Way.
Since our last update, the gritting on the lanes had been much improved and more effective, and we are thankful for the action on that. The repair action is now moving slowly. The first repair began on one of the Shields Road bus stops but was unfortunately then halted for five days with a full blockage of the cycle path remaining in place during that time. It seems that the understanding for the respect for our main commuting route from Glasgow City Council still has some way to go.
This work is now complete though, and we hope that the drainage will be improved there from now on. Elsewhere, near the other Shields Road bus stop, the flooding was drained but swiftly returned, demonstrating that a more permanent repair was required. We have been continuing to ensure that GCC are working on moving forward with the SWCW repairs, and have some of the following info to share with you:
To GCC from GoBike:
We’ve been sent on info from an FOI on the flooding on SWCW that suggests that the bridge would first need strengthening by Network Rail before the required resurfacing can take place. We would imagine that the timeline for this would actually be really significant, and so if this is indeed the case, we would like to suggest the requirement for a program of flooding maintenance at the site until this permanent repair can happen. We have also been made aware though, that heavy machinery such as (…..) vehicles have routinely been seen working on the bridge. Can you explain this?
The FOI also illustrates that there were 13 fault reports specifically on the flooding to the council over a period of a year and a half until the first investigative site visit happened in August 2018. Injuries have occurred at this site due to the neglect to attend to the repair timeously. This week repairs started at the other bus stop on Monday the 7th, which closed off the full cycle lane with barriers blocking cycle lane access, yet no signage and no diversion in place, just a ramp useful only to people with prams and wheelchairs. Work then ceased, incomplete, after the 7th, and the barriers still remain in place, now six days later. I attach an image to illustrate. Frankly, for a flagship route, one of the only truly safe routes we have in the city for people on bikes, the priority for it’s upkeep within the council is quite clearly insufficient.
To GoBike from GCC:
Thank you for your email regarding the South West City Way Cycle route.
We are currently investigating what options are available to resolve the issues with the surfacing on the bridge, taking account of the weight restrictions and work operations that are permitted to be undertaken on the bridge due to its condition. Vehicles should not be using the cycleway and thank you for bringing this to our attention. I will arrange for this issue to be raised with (….) at the next Roads Authorities and Utilies Committee (RAUC) meeting. The Council is also currently reviewing how these initial complaints were initially dealt with. I can confirm repairs at the bus stop south of the railway bridge started on site on 7th January 2019. The works were to amend the drainage channel inlets, open them up to allow more flow of surface water and make future maintenance more accessible. The contractor has been made aware of the importance of maintaining the traffic management at all times and to resurface the ramp as a priority. I can only apologise it’s taken longer than expected.
The bus stop north (see image) of the railway bridge with the drainage issues has been investigated by LES and the contractor Mac Asphalt Ltd who were involved with the works to resolve the drainage. Due to the lack of existing drainage gullies on Shields Road a further investigation was undertaken on the existing gullies and manholes to allow for an additional 3No. gullies are to be installed within the cycle lane. Work is due to commence on site on Monday 21st January 2019. The cycle lane from the start of Shields Road at St Andrews Drive to the railway bridge will be closed for 7 working days to allow for the drainage to be installed. An alternative route using the footway will be signposted.
I hope this is of assistance.
So that work is due to start today, which is positive. Please let us know whether the diversion is adequate.
Thanks again to the council for working to get this sorted although it is unfortunate that it took such action before anything was done, when the issue had been so widely reported. We have been sent details of just how many reports were made in this FOI sent in from a super helpful member which makes for very interesting reading. But we hope that from here, the council will appreciate the importance of keeping our safe cycling spaces (which as we know, are few and far between) clear, working, maintained, and well…. safe.
Perhaps next, we can look at the issue of parking in the segregated cycle lanes too eh? We will be watching the repairs unfold and wont be resting easy – we already have our next target in mind for the GoBike Board of Shame. Watch this space.