Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Green councillors' petition forces debate on cycle lane safety in Hove

Alex Phillips collecting signatures
22 March 2011. Green councillors Ian Davey and Alex Phillips will present a 3500-strong petition on the threatened Hove cycle lanes for debate at this Thursday’s Full Council meeting. It comes after the Tory administration revealed plans to spend £1.1m removing the lanes.

The councillors will also be seeking council support for a series of safety recommendations. These will secure the future of the cycle lane by examining safety concerns and completing missing links to enable cyclists to access it safely.

Councillor Davey said: “The public have expressed overwhelming support for retaining these cycle lanes on The Drive and Grand Avenue. We are calling on the Conservative administration to respond by releasing the safety audits into the public domain and to commit to addressing any safety concerns that exist.”

“We would also like to see improved access by finishing links to the north, and work completed around a cycle lane along the Old Shoreham Road - which also had significant public support. We hope that the Conservative administration will take this opportunity to once and for all commit not to digging up these lanes.

“Money would be better spent improving rather than scrapping cycle infrastructure in this city.”

Cllr Phillips said: “Let's give people the choice to be able to ride their bike on the road, and make cycling safer and easier so that we can truly become the cycle town we were once accredited for being.” (more >>>)

She added: "Many thanks to all of those people who supported this campaign: cyclists young and old, as well as non-cyclists who simply did not agree with the proposal by the Tory administration to spend money digging up existing cycle lanes rather than improving them.”

The Full Council meeting will be at Brighton Town Hall on Thursday 24th March. Successful opposition budget amendments earlier this month cancelled Tory plans to spend £1.1m removing the lane.

The petition has gained 3558 signatures, well in excess of the threshold of 1250 necessary to trigger a full debate. The petition can be found at http://www.gopetition.com/petition/43064.html

The report and petition text can be viewed here: http://present.brighton-hove.gov.uk/mgConvert2PDF.aspx?ID=28470.

The recommendations that Cllrs Davey and Phillips will put to the council are:
2.1 That the petition is referred to the Environment Cabinet Member Meeting for consideration with the recommendation that the Cabinet Member:
2.2.1 Thanks the public for their strong expression of interest and tremendous level of support for retaining and improving the cycle lanes
2.2.2 Acknowledges that there is clear public support for the retention of these lanes
2.2.3 Places all safety audits that have been undertaken on The Drive into the public domain.
2.2.4 Instructs officers to identify immediate measures that can be taken to address safety concerns
2.2.5 Instructs officers to identify measures both in the immediate and longer term which may increase usage such as completing links to the north of the city and developing routes to the east and west.

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