ePetition - More space for walking & cycling during Covid-19

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ePetition details

More space for walking & cycling during Covid-19

We the undersigned petition Brighton & Hove Council to immediately implement a swift programme of temporary measures to enable safe walking and cycling for physical distancing. Specifically to: 1) Widen pavements with barriers/cones for safe access to shops, services and essential daily exercise. 2) Widen and add additional cycle lanes starting with the seafront and key access routes suggested below. 3) Close more streets to vehicles and use temporary traffic calming measures. 4) Enforce speed limits 5) Reduce green person crossing waiting times.

A council committee has recently agreed that council officers will urgently ‘explore’ how the ‘Local Transport Plan’ can be made ‘more flexible’ to allow widening of footpaths and improve the city’s cycle network etc. These however could be longer-term in the making. The residents of the city now need to make sure that the council follow up on this exploration to bring tangible, fast and vital change in response to the urgent pandemic needs. We are advised it is important the council continue to see how important this issue is for residents.

These temporary changes are low cost, fast and easy to implement (other cities are doing so in just a few days). Life-saving, injury preventing, economy and health enhancing measures. These will benefit the whole community, giving equal, safe, physically distanced access for walking and cycling areas to all people including children, elders, disabled and women.
Confidence to walk and cycle come from having areas to do so safely. We want space to keep everyone safe, including those who find it hard or impossible to walk (disabled people and those with limited mobility frequently use bicycles as mobility aids). Keeping people healthy mentally and physically, as well as able to safely access key work and essentials, makes social, health and economic sense. There must be equally safe space for cargo, tricycle and other specially adapted bikes.
Women undertake the majority of unpaid work (approx. 75% averaging 4.5 hours per day). They make up over 75% of the NHS workforce too. It is well documented that they and others would cycle more when there are segregated, wide enough cycle lanes to do so. They also walk more to undertake multiple care and/or work trips per day. Women and all key workers need safe cycling to access work at low cost and save time too. Enabling this safe access is important to our economy and community.
There is not enough room for pedestrians or cyclists to physically distance currently. This is a key opportunity for temporary measures that could be piloted for potential permanent solutions. If we don’t do this FAST we will end up like Wuhan in China with a three-fold increase of car use post lockdown easing. It’s great that Madeira Drive is temporarily closed but it’s just a small first step and we urgently need more city wide.
Council Officers are best placed to plan and implement these changes. ‘Pedal People’ Brighton charity (pedalpeople.org.uk) does not want to limit the petition to too many specifics so adds the following as initial suggestions for consideration:
1. Make the existing seafront cycle path one way west (Hove Lagoon) to east (Black Rock). Add a painted segregated east to west cycle path on the road next to it. Add traffic calming measures or make the whole section 20mph for motorised vehicles.
2. East Brighton motorised-traffic-free access route for pedestrians and cyclists to Madeira Drive.
3. Central Brighton traffic calming measures and/or motorised-traffic-free access route through.
4. Improve the Lewes Road cycle path route especially round the building sites to enable access from Bevendean, Moulescoombe and Coldean.

Started by: Elly Hargreave (Pedal People charity (pedalpeople.org.uk))

This ePetition runs from 01/05/2020 to 22/06/2020.

701 people have signed this ePetition.

Council response

Will be presented to the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee on 23 June 2020


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