Blackfriars Bridge cycle lane for the chop despite bikes making up over a third of traffic

TfL plans to cut heavily used bike lane

Transport for London is planning to remove a well used cycle lane at Blackfriars Bridge, leading to calls that the removal will needlessly endanger cyclists, as reported on the Londonist and Cyclists in the City (via the Guardian).

According to figures from Cyclists in the City, bicycles make up 35.6 per cent of traffic on Blackfriars bridge, whereas cars and taxis make up 31.9 per cent. Despite the heavy use of bikes on the cycle lanes across the bridge, a section of the lane will be removed, seemingly to ease car traffic flow at the cost of cyclists and pedestrians. 

Should the plans to remove the 2.5 metre wide lane go ahead, cyclists have to move across multiple lanes of traffic and in other places share some of the route with pedestrians. 

The proposal is seemingly at odds with London’s cycle revolution, and follows the move by Brighton and Hove Council to remove a cycle lane at a cost of £1m to the taxpayer – a move fiercely criticised by the CTC, Sustrans and local group Bricycles.

James at Cyclists in the City said: "Crossing the bridges is one of the most dangerous parts of any trans-Thames cycle-journey; cars, buses, bikes and pedestrians converge and jostle for bridge space while those with engines enjoy the one stretch of their trip where they can accelerate meaningfully.

"If the bridges are bad, getting onto them is the greater obstacle with the gyratory junctions and one way systems that dominate most of the bridge approaches. Glancing at the maps of London’s cycling accidents you can see the clusters around those killer junctions — including the northern Blackfriars approach."

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