Please support safe cycling commuter routes in Eltham post lockdown
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We are concerned Eltham residents keen to find a safe solution for those of us that will need to commute into central London as lockdown eases in the coming weeks. There is no doubt that public transport is insufficient to allow us to commute safely. We therefore strongly advocate for safe cycle routes being set up to allow us to connect to safer cycle routes in Blackheath and Greenwich that link safely to central London.
What we know:
- Post Lockdown there is expected to be only 15%-25% capacity on Buses, Trains, Tubes & DLR to allow for safe social distancing.
- Pre Covid-19 there were 10.1 million passenger movements / year from Eltham trains stations (Eltham/New Eltham/Falconwood/Mottingham/Kidbrooke).
- A further 9.9 million from nearby Blackheath/Lee/Woolwich Arsenal/Plumstead. Plus the DLR, Jubilee and Buses.
- This averages 31,000 passenger journeys per day across the year. This average shoots up when we spread them across the basic 250 working days a year (outside of weekends and bank holidays, school holidays etc). The vast majority will travel into London. And these figures do not include bus journeys and DLR.
- Pre Covid-19 the PTAL rating (Public Transport Accessibility Rating) in much of Eltham was already poor (see slides attached to the petition here)
- While much homeworking will continue post lockdown, many people cannot (particularly lower paid roles).
- Cycling from Eltham South, Eltham North, Eltham West, Coldharbour & New Eltham into Central London is dangerous as far as Blackheath.
- If we do not act now a combination of increased Covid-19 spread is likely through poor social distancing, poorer air quality through increased car journeys and potentially more cycling accidents in Greenwich.
- Not providing safe transport routes for those that have to commute will exacerbate the inequities witnessed already in analysis of COVID-19 data, i.e. those with lower paid jobs and on the frontline are more exposed to the dangers of COVID-19 than higher income earners who can control their exposure better by staying at home.
What we support through this petition:
The introduction of relatively low-cost measures including:
- mandatory cycle lanes on wide carriageways
- shared space on little used pavements
- cycle advance stop lines
These measures will help reduce accident risk and encourage more people onto bikes at this time. See the options presented in the maps in slides attached for specific route options.
Encouraging those who can cycle or walk to do so, making use of these pathways selected. This will mean the Council sharing information to Eltham residents (e.g. through SE9 magazine, social media sites locally) around the existence of these safe cycle routes and signposting to local cycling advice and support (such as the Greenwich Cyclists: http://www.greenwichcyclists.org.uk/about-us to increase cycle confidence.
Benefits of establishing these safe cycle routes at this time:
- Confidence-building of local residents that cycling is a viable, safe commuter option: At a moderate pace (16kph) after 20 mins safe cycling a commuter would be 5.3km towards their place of work, entering Greenwich Park in the safer section of their journey.
- Less cars on the road means less air pollution and a healthier environment for all our residents.
- Less cars on the road means less accidents, reducing pressure on the NHS.
- Less people on trains and buses means easier to maintain social distancing and less likelihood of COVID-19 transmission.
Please support this petition and share it widely if you believe like we do that establishing safe cycle routes will be a good thing.
For more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
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