The C43 Cycleway proposes to connect Hyde Park to Gloucester Place via a new cycle lane.
Local Conservatives are concerned that many people affected by these changes have not received adequate notification of these proposals. Working with local amenity groups including the Hyde Park Estate Association and the Marylebone Association, councillors and our MP Nickie Aiken, we successfully got Labour-controlled Westminster City Council to extend the deadline for consultation.
Whilst we are all keen to encourage more cycling, it is crucial that local people are given the opportunity to voice any concerns they may have.
Westminster Council is planning a new cycleway. C43. The plans include road closures, the removal of slip roads, more double yellow lines and the removal of residents’ parking bays along many parts of the route.
Working together with Nickie Aiken MP and local Conservative Marylebone councillors, along with the Hyde Park Estate Association and the Marylebone Association, the Labour-led Council has now caved into pressure and agreed to give people more time to respond to the consultation by extending the deadline. This is a victory for local people against a Labour Council failing to listen to local people.
Of course, we welcome appropriate improvements to benefit pedestrians and cyclists.
However, these proposals include preventing all traffic southbound on Stanhope Place; narrowing the traffic lanes at almost all junctions on the route; the removal of all resident parking on George St and the loss of two large motorcycle parking bays.
We also have specific safety concerns about some aspects of the segregated cycle lane on George Street:
- That the segregated cycle lanes on the south side of George Street at the junction with Gloucester Place stop abruptly for Pay-to-Park bays and a fast-charging bay, pushing the cyclists into the traffic for that section alone.
- We also have safety concerns for school children and cyclists about the proposed new coach loading bays on Bryanston Square for Wetherby Prep School. Many coaches will have to cross the proposed dedicated, segregated cycle lane to access the bays, which will be dangerous for cyclists, pupils and pedestrians alike.
- The car wash entrance on the north side of George Street just east of Forset Street will also mean cars crossing the raised segregated cycle lane; no provision is shown for this on the proposal drawings.
- We are concerned about the removal of disability bays. Many elderly people have arranged their lives around the facilities on George Street. Disability bays around the corner could confine many of these people to their homes as going out becomes more difficult.
This proposed Cycleway is important for cyclists as it links several existing cycle routes and feeds into Hyde Park through Stanhope Place. However, it must be implemented in a way to allow residents, local businesses and school pupils to continue quiet enjoyment of their neighbourhood.
These latest proposals, coming on top of the recent ‘Connaught Village’ proposals, which close Kendal Street to northbound traffic, feel like a ‘Low Traffic Neighbourhood’ by stealth to Hyde Park estate residents. All proposals should be considered together, and actions should be proportionate to the issues that need addressing. Currently, the proposals would be disruptive on both sides of Edgware Road, where traffic is not heavy and does not call for such radical measures.
What should I do?
If you share our concerns that the proposals do not provide adequate safety measures for pedestrians and cyclists, or are worried about how these plans might affect you, then please:
- share your concerns with us by completing the form below
- click on the yellow button to respond to the consultation by the new deadline of midnight on Sunday 25 June.