Cycling in Gloucestershire - The way forward
At Wednesday’s council meeting (24 June) councillors agreed further promotion is needed to encourage people to carry on cycling.
Last month Gloucestershire County Council announced plans to make it easier and safer for people to walk and cycle. The move came following government announcements of measures and national investment of £250m to promote sustainable green travel.
At its peak, cycling in Gloucestershire increased by 190% during the coronavirus lockdown and the county already has a large number of available cycle routes.
To support cyclists as well as encourage more people to take up cycling as a sustainable way of travel; people need to feel safe and dedicated routes need to be extensively publicised.
The county council is working closely with the district councils to identify their top priority schemes.
The motion asked for a portion of the ring fenced grant is used to promote cycling as well as put in place safe storage for bicycles in various locations across the county.
Cllr Lesley Williams, Group Leader for the Labour Party, said: “I am particularly keen to encourage all the born again cyclists who have got back on the bike during this crisis to carry on. Cycling on main roads will become less fun as they get busier again, this policy means that we can publicise and promote designated cycle ways and cycle paths that are bike friendly. There are many cycle routes for getting to work as well as for fun and some of this money will be used to tell people where they are!”
Cllr Nigel Moor, cabinet member for environment and planning, said: “Promoting and encouraging people to cycle will help Gloucestershire to reduce its transport emissions that contribute to climate change. Cycling helps to reduce congestion, improve local air quality and is good for our personal health and wellbeing. Any shift from cars to more environmentally friendly forms of travel will have a positive impact on the environment.”
Cllr Rachel Smith, Group Leader for the Green Party, said: “It’s important we do as much as possible to encourage people to continue to cycle to help deliver a greener Gloucestershire that tackles the climate change emergency as well as improves our quality of life.”
The full motion is available here.