Monday, 2 January 2012

Is this Manchester's Narrowest Cycle Lane?

This is Mount Street in Central Manchester, heading towards the Town Hall, and this pathetic green strip is supposedly a cycle lane.

Narrower than the double yellow lines it is possibly the narrowest cycle lane in Manchester (Salford has one that is probably narrower) and utterly useless. For a cycle lane to be of any real use it needs to be at least 2 metres wide, this abomination is not much more than 20cm wide. It is the kind of pathetic tokenism that exposes the council's real attitude towards cycling. Somebody in the council designed and built this with our money. Why?

Well, the lane begins at a reasonable width in Windmill Street.

But narrows as it joins the roadway.

It then narrows again as it turns right into Mount Street.

It ends up around 30cm wide at this point and continues this wide to the junction with Peter Street. Notice how wide the road is here.

At the junction a passing rider obligingly demonstrated how wide the cycle lane should be by doing a track stand where the centre of the cycle lane should have been.

The lane continues past the back of the library the same width,

then narrows even more as it passes Central Street,

and ends at the lights by the Town Hall.

The reason this cycle lane is so narrow is that the council has given priority to cars. This one way street is marked out with two lanes. This is a deliberate measure to increase the traffic flow into Albert Square.

If the council is serious about making this place a "World Class Cycling City" then this is the sort of thing that has to go.

This road should be narrowed to a single vehicle lane. This would make room for decent width cycle lanes on both sides of the road, and enable bicycles to use Mount Street in both directions. One of many one way streets that should be opened up to two way cycling.

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  1. This road should be narrowed to a single vehicle lane.

    If they ever do, you will know that they have started to take cycling seriously!

  2. Cyclists have nothing to do with this lane; it is merely present to enforce parking restrictions. This the reason it is a mandatory lane...