So the confidence and supply deal is done and the DUP have brought home the bacon – £1.5 billion for Northern Ireland in exchange for propping up Theresa May’s minority government. And a whack of cash is listed under infrastructure, but will active travel continue to live off scraps, or can this critical policy area move from the fringes to the mainstream?
Bikefast have called on the Department for infrastructure to take the long view on sustainable transport and protect our vital infrastructure from knee-jerk, un-evidenced decisions to hobble Belfast’s transit systems solely to benefit private taxi firms.
The 18th of May marks the birth of the modern bicycle right here in Belfast.
In 1889 Willie Hume of the Belfast Cruisers Cycling Club proved the superiority of a safety bicycle fitted with pneumatic tyres developed in the city by John Boyd Dunlop. The ubiquitous penny farthing racer became obsolete and cycling changed forever.
In 2017, everyday cycling in Belfast is waiting for a re-formed Executive to green-light a traffic-free bridge linking the city centre with the south-east of the city. Within a stone’s throw of our city’s unique and pivotal cycling history, Bikefast today calls for it to be officially named the Hume Dunlop Bridge.
Work is ongoing to loosen the belt on vehicle traffic in Belfast around Donegall Quay, which is taking away a major crossing point for two months. That’s bad enough for prioritising active travel in the city, but now our Transport Department’s executive arm TransportNI (TNI) has gone a step further by adding CYCLISTS PLEASE DISMOUNT signs.. for no obvious or stated reason.
The Department of Infrastructure (DfI) made a shocking, behind-closed-doors decision to allow all taxis into Belfast bus lanes from Monday 20th February. This is being pitched as a “trial” for 12 weeks, ostensibly to gather data before Bus Rapid Transit is introduced, but is feared will be the foot in the door for a permanent arrangement at the end of the 84 day trial. Continue reading “Survival guide to 84 days of taxis in Belfast bus lanes”
“Is ANYWHERE safe from the lycra louts? They’ve got cycle lanes galore. But now they’re on pavements and jumping lights – and mowing down pedestrians”
Thus began Brendan O’Neill’s polemic in the Daily Mail on the 7th February 2017, piggy-backing Department for Transport (DfT) figures on collisions between pedestrians and cyclists in Great Britain.