There was some good news today with the announcement that Birmingham has been successful in securing much needed funding for improvements to the cycling infrastructure of the city. Hopefully helping to change it from the Detroit to the Amsterdam of the UK.
The funding secured for the Birmingham Cycle Revolution adds up to £24.3 million, £17 million of which coming from the Governments ‘Cycle City Ambition Grant’, and over £7 million is pledged by the Council itself.
Beginning ‘as soon as possible’, the two year plan will see much needed improvement to City Centre routes such as the ring-road and pedestrianised areas, main arterial routes into the centre or ‘the spokes of the wheel’, establishing quieter parallel paths, green routes which are mainly off-road, for example, Tame Valley, finally the canal network, making tow paths cater for all-weather cycling.
Aside from the physical route improvements, there will also be work done to publicize bike travel more effectively, increase the signage and parking facilities on routes and to offer bike hire schemes mimicking the success of the ‘Boris-Bikes’ in London.
The radius of the proposed improvements stretches to Quinton in the west, Stechford in the east, Perry Barr in the north and Stirchley in the south. Ensuring an extra 70 miles of new cycle routes with upgrades to a further 60 miles by 2016.
This is a fantastic start and we hope that it will help Birmingham advance from a currently dismal 1 percent of journeys made by bike to 10% by the mid 2020s. However to achieve this, Birmingham City Council will need to build on this success and secure further investment in cycling and walking.
Let’s Get Moving will now be campaigning to get the council to build on this success and pledge enough investment for a 10-year active travel investment fund.
For this reason, we urge you to get on your bikes, keep helping in anyway you can to make our City an example of the benefits that bike power can bring! If you want to get involved in the campaign then please email us firstname.lastname@example.org