Two petitions about cycle lanes have been started, showing the dividing lines in pedal-power politics Brighton and Hove.
And another calls for Madeira Drive to be reopened to all – after temporary barriers were put up to keep cars, vans and coaches out to make it safer for pedestrians and cyclists.
The first of the petitions – on the Brighton and Hove City Council website – runs until Monday 22 June and was started by Elly Hargreave, from the Pedal People charity.
It calls for “more space for walking and cycling during covid-19” and urges the council to “implement a swift programme of temporary measures to enable safe walking and cycling for physical distancing”.
The petition, signed by more than 700 people, sets out five specific measures
- Widen pavements with barriers/cones for safe access to shops, services and essential daily exercise Widen and add additional cycle lanes starting with the seafront and key access routes
- Close more streets to vehicles and use temporary traffic calming measures
- Enforce speed limits
- Reduce green person crossing waiting times
The next petition was started by Peter Challis to “remove the temporary cycle lane extension from the Old Shoreham Road … pending a full planning review and consultation with all affected parties including residents”.
The petition runs until Wednesday 22 July and currently has 181 signatures although it was not possible to sign the petition today, with the council website showing an error message, saying “Page unavailable.”
Mr Challis said: “Many people have expressed concern about how the Old Shoreham Road cycle lane was implemented over the VE weekend with little consultation, how it is little used by cyclists and has resulted in increased congestion for other road users, especially as the government eases ‘lockdown’ restrictions.”
He hopes to attract enough support to ask Brighton and Hove City Council to consult people properly at a meeting of the full council on Thursday 23 July.
A third petition, started by Laura King, calls on the council to reopen Madeira Drive to all users and has attracted more than 1,100 signatures.
The petition, which runs until Thursday 6 August, urges the council “to reopen Brighton’s Madeira Drive to all users without further delay to save the businesses operating there, reinstate access for motorcyclists, scooterists, taxis and coaches and enable visitor parking.
“Brighton and Hove has suffered enormous economic damage owing to lockdown and needs all the help it can get to recover.”
The government has allocated almost £600,000 from its emergency travel fund to Brighton and Hove to try to encourage more walking and cycling as lockdown restrictions are lifted.
And the council could be given a further sum of almost £2.4 million to make temporary changes permanent.
It looks likely to be used to pay for a number of schemes. These include
- Widening pavements and adjusting parking and loading bays at the Clock Tower and in St James’s Street and Western Road
- Widening pavements, removing parking bays and managing access to the Old Town and the North Laine
- Creating cycle lanes on the A259 seafront road west from the Aquarium roundabout, on the A23 between Preston Park and Preston Circus and on the A270 Old Shoreham Road
- Putting up cameras to enforce cycle lane parking restrictions
- Putting up cycle lane signs along Basin Road South and raising awareness in partnership with Shoreham Port and neighbouring councils
- Supporting the bike share scheme
To find an e-petition on the council’s website – and to sign it – click here.