Olympic countdown - Reasons for a London Cycle Map, #90: Completing the LCN

#90: COMPLETING THE LCN. During the last thirty or so years, over a hundred million pounds have been spent creating the London Cycle Network (LCN) - a joined-up network of quieter, safer cycle routes spreading like tentacles throughout the whole capital. There are 1000s of kilometres of these routes, provisioned with special intrastructure improvements for cyclists, including cycle lanes, traffic-calming measures, and clever short-cuts.

In theory, you could cycle from anywhere to anywhere in the capital on this vast network of routes - many of which are both fast and pleasurable to ride on. In practice, you can't - because the network is poorly mapped and inadequately signed.

Simon Parker's London Cycle Map has solved the first (and by far the hardest) of these problems. But to make his map truly useful, we also need to solve the second, far simpler, problem - by providing signs and markings throughout the London Cycle Network, corresponding to Parker's design.

Solving the second problem would complete the London Cycle Network. For a fraction of the money spent on it so far, we could make this vast system of safer cycle routes accessible to millions of people. Why turn our backs on thirty years of valuable work? In effect, we've built in London a wonderful means of transportation that could carry millions of commuters to work each day, with negligible costs to people or planet - but we forgot to create the starter key.


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