Sunday, March 30, 2008

An alternative to road pricing?

Copenhagen has been trying to implement road pricing (like London's Congestion Charge), but is being blocked by central government. So...

he has now proposed something City Hall calls 'Intelligent Traffic Control'.

It involves setting up sensors that measure air pollution in Copenhagen and the levels of pollution they report will regulate the traffic heading into the city.

If the pollution levels are too high on any particular day, all the traffic lights on the main roads into the city will turn red and stay red longer than normal. The time the traffic lights are green will be reduced by 10 percent.

More genius from Copenhazanize: Intelligent Traffic Control in Copenhagen.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Darlington is a flagship for transport policy. Discuss.

A CONFERENCE is being held in Darlington to examine its flagship transport scheme, Local Motion, and help steer towns across the country in the right direction.

Darlington is the only highway authority in England to have secured funding worth about £4.75m to become a sustainable travel and cycling demonstration town.

The free day-long conference on Wednesday, April 2, at the Dolphin Leisure Centre will highlight the successful and failed projects.

- The Northern Echo: Flagship travel town leads the way (The comments are revealing.)

Filming on the road

Magnatom is a Glasgow bike commuter who films his commutes using a helmet-mounted camera and then posts the clips to YouTube.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Shared Space in Drachten Revisited

Last year two members of the Cycling Campaign visited an example of Shared Space in Drachten, Netherlands. You can see our original post and video here.

Since that visit, the Space's designers have posted an assessment of its impact on YouTube. Here it is. Some highlights stand out, when considering its implications for Darlington:

*It is a roundabout where 22,000 vehicles daily pass by. I wonder how these numbers compare with, say, the Victoia Road/Grange Road roundabout, where a solution for a cycle crossing is yet to be implemented?

*We have no queues anymore.

*The interaction around the roundabout - meeting each other, greeting each other. This refers to how car drivers and cyclists relate on the roundabout. Imagine!!!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

David Cameron

Velorution has an interesiting post commenting upon David Cameron's cycling misdemeanours: Velorution: Safe Cameron.

this is the order of importance that should guide urban road facilities:
1. Safety of vulnerable road users, (pedestrians and cyclists)
2. Safety of motor vehicle drivers,
3. Convenience of vulnerable road users,
4. Convenience of motor vehicle drivers.

If a facility puts, say, the convenience of motorists ahead of the safety of vulnerable road users, it is reasonable to disregard it.

Monday, March 17, 2008

The Way Motorists See Cyclists?

Try this awareness test....

Bike thefts

The latest Neighbourhood Watch newsletter notes a new crime trend:

Although theft of pedal cycles is a crime which we constantly need to remain aware of, there is an emerging trend of thefts of bikes from sheds and garages where it is possible that high value or specialised bikes have been 'followed' to their home address.

If you drive back from somewhere like Hamsterley Forest with your bike on an external rack, keep an eye out for anyone following you.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Inconvenient Truth in Darlington

Over 60 people, including many Borough Councillors, viewed ‘An Inconvenient Truth’, Al Gore’s Oscar winning film about climate change at the Friends Meeting House in Darlington on Wednesday 5th March. This successful event, organised by Darlington Friends of the Earth, was followed by a discussion with a panel of local councillors representing the Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat parties supported by council officials. Darlington Cycling Campaign was also present.

Councillor Veronica Copeland, the Labour Cabinet Member with responsibility for Environment and Climate Change, told the meeting that every one would learn from watching the film and she would make it her duty to organise showings so every Darlington Borough Councillor can see the ‘The Inconvenient Truth.’

The consensus of the meeting was that on such an important issue, all politicians should pull together to use their influence to pursue policies to improve the environment and halt climate change. Several people present called on local councillors to set an example and lead from the front.

Darlington Friends of the Earth Coordinator, Kendra Ullyart, told the meeting that the group and its members will continue to pressure for change. She said ‘that in addition to our national campaign for a strong climate change law to reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2050; we will also be concentrating on local issues, and campaigning to get robust recycling policies in place throughout the area’, She then invited the audience to continue their interest in the environment and join the group. The next meeting of Darlington Friends of the Earth will be held on Monday 10th March at 7.30 pm where members will have the opportunity to quiz Ian Thompson, the Borough Council's Assistant Director of Environmental Services, about waste management policy and practice.

How politicians lead from the front - in Germany! Dr. Reinhard Loske, Environment Senator, Bremen.