*sigh*. I was at another of the local street design stakeholder meetings (what can I say, they serve cake). All was going well until I suggested that pavement cycling along one particular busy road might be reduced if people were signposted to the leisure centre via a safer route through the residential streets. Someone from the council piped up: surely you’d only be going to the leisure centre if you actually lived in Bigtown, he pointed out (showing a distinct lack of confidence in the council’s flagship sporting facility and venue) and then you’d know how to get there. As the whole project is trying to create a nicer environment, a heritage feel, and less street clutter, wouldn’t a sign just defeat the point?
Erm. Quite apart from the fact that after five years I’m still finding new routes to get to places on my bike, there is a big, shiny, glaring elephant in the room here. We can put in all the railings, cobbles, gas-effect street lights and heritage street signs we like and none of it will disguise the fact that the streets themselves will be completely cluttered up with cars. Which aren’t very Victorian, or indeed very attractive at all. So I can’t see the problem with one little directional sign, clutter or no clutter.
I am prepared to compromise though. If the council will just ban through traffic in the area, unless you’re in a horse-drawn Hackney carriage, and ensure that the coal comes delivered on a dray, then I will quite happily only cycle through it on a Safety Bike, wearing Rational Dress.
You can’t say fairer than that.