The Old Shoreham Road cycle lane has won a temporary reprieve after a four-hour meeting at Hove Town Hall.
The future of the temporary cycle lane now looks likely to be debated again at another Brighton and Hove City Council meeting within the next three weeks.
Labour and the Conservatives thwarted Green plans to make the Hove cycle lane permanent, citing the feedback from a six-week public consultation.
The next meeting is due to “consider the removal” of the controversial scheme which was brought in just over a year ago, in May last year, during the first national coronavirus lockdown.
It was funded by the government which had ordered people to find alternatives to public transport, particularly “active travel” such as walking and cycling.
The temporary cycle lane was one of a series of “active travel” measures voted on today (Wednesday 21 July), including cycle lanes elsewhere, a revamp of Western Road, Brighton, and a trial park and ride scheme.
But another controversial scheme, the extension of the A259 seafront cycle lane along the seafront in Hove, will also be put on hold, subject to a consultation.
And plans to extend the Hove cycle lane west through Portslade were scrapped after the move was overwhelmingly rejected during the public consultation.
The decisions were made at a special meeting of the council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee today.
Labour said: “Labour are keen to ensure there is more active travel infrastructure built around the city – that’s why we implemented these temporary measures.
“However, we have always been clear that residents must be at the forefront of any transport changes and their opinions must be respected.”
Conservative councillor Robert Nemeth said: “In the case of the Old Shoreham Road cycle lane, opponents have literally been slurred, insulted and ridiculed by the Green administration.
“It should be possible to agree to disagree on such subjects which is a far better position to be in when future cycle lanes are up for consideration as they are today.”
He said: “It would not have surprised me one bit if I had found out that the government had asked for cash to be returned after it was found that the administration of the day had misrepresented the position with regard to consultation with disabled groups on the funding application form.
“And good on BADGE (Brighton Access for Disabled Groups Everywhere) campaigners for forming a group to highlight this and so many other related subjects.”
Councillor Nemeth added: “I hope that this whole unnecessary episode is remembered as a way not to operate – and that the principles of consultation, consent and democracy are enshrined in future decision-making processes.”
Green councillor Jamie Lloyd said that there had been constant negativity from opposition members “which has done nothing to win people over”.
He said that, if they were committed to reducing traffic, they should be prepared to get behind controversial measures.
Fellow Green councillor Amy Heley, who chairs the committee, cited the views of children who were under-represented in the thousands of responses to the council’s consultation.
The new meeting to settle the future of the temporary cycle lane along the A270 Old Shoreham Road, in Hove, is due to take place by Wednesday 11 August.
More to follow from our local democracy service reporter.
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