Cycle 'quietways' to open next year in London
The first quietways - backstreet cycles routes - will open in London next year as part of a £120m scheme.
Construction is about to start on the routes which provide cyclists an alternative to busy main roads.
The first two routes will run from central London to Greenwich and Hackney, and will then extend to Walthamstow.
Work on the routes mainly involves resurfacing and removing barriers such as chicanes.
'Shift from cars'
Five more quietway routes are at the design stage and about two dozen more will be finished or in progress by 2016, Transport for London (TfL) said.
Unlike the old London Cycle Network, quietways will be direct and clearly signed. They will also be largely unsegregated, according to TfL.
The first seven quietway routes are:
- Waterloo to Greenwich (London Boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark, Lewisham, Greenwich);
- Bloomsbury to Walthamstow - first phase to Mare Street (Camden, Islington, Hackney, and Waltham Forest);
- Regents Park/Marylebone to Gladstone Park in Dollis Hill (Westminster, Brent, Camden);
- Waterloo to Crystal Palace (City, Southwark, Lambeth);
- Aldgate to Hainault: first phase will be Whitechapel to Fulwell Cross (Tower Hamlets, Newham, Redbridge, Hackney, and the London Legacy Development Corporation);
- Waterloo to Wimbledon via Clapham Common (Lambeth, Wandsworth, Merton);
- Clapham Common to Croydon (Lambeth, Wandsworth, Croydon)
TfL has also committed to transforming Ealing and Twickenham town centres to make them more welcoming to cyclists, and a cycle Superhighway 9 along the A315 in Hammersmith & Fulham and Hounslow.
Leon Daniels, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL, said: "The network of quietways we will be introducing will open more options up for new and infrequent cyclists to take to the streets using less busy roads.
"This will further help shift more journeys away from cars, particularly in the outer boroughs."
London Assembly Labour group transport spokesperson Val Shawcross welcomed the quietways, but added: "It is disappointing though that it has taken seven years for Boris Johnson to start putting in the quality cycling infrastructure we so badly need.
"Whilst cycling projects are now starting to come to fruition, too much of the cycling revolution we need to see will be left to the next mayor."