10,000 New Bike Parking Spaces for London Schools

london_kids.jpg

Speaking of bike parking, 10,000 new bike parking spaces have been installed in 400 London schools since the 2004 launch of the Mayor’s School Cycle
Parking Programme, Transport for London announced yesterday. This year alone TfL will spend £1.2 million on school bike parking (that’s $2.5 million and rising). Many of the new bike parking facilities are indoors or otherwise protected from weather and often include lockers. Jenny Jones, Mayor Ken Livingstone’s Green Transport Advisor, said:

These are
first class facilities for the next generation of London cyclists. We want young people to get the cycling habit, so that they grow up
thinking that it is just as much a regular part of London life as
getting on the bus, or Tube.

The bike parking program is part of an overall "school travel" plan to get students to walk or bike to school. According to TfL, one in five cars on London streets during the morning rush hour are busy transporting kids to school, that’s 35% of students. About 1,600 schools, or 53 per cent of all schools in London
now have a school travel plan. Every school will have one by 2009. TfL estimates that the school travel plans will ultimately help remove 4.5 million car journeys per year from London streets.

BikeRadar.com has more.

Photo: Aaron Naparstek, London, March 2007. That’s London Cycling Campaign‘s Tom Bogdanowicz in the background.

  • Larry Littlefield

    “These are first class facilities for the next generation of London cyclists. We want young people to get the cycling habit, so that they grow up thinking that it is just as much a regular part of London life as getting on the bus, or Tube.”

    As I wrote on Room 8 some time back, if New York wanted to become a cycling, low-obesity city, the best way to get there would be to skip the generation that votes for Lew Fidler and is set in its ways, and start over with the next one.

    Simple, free bicycles could be provided to those 11 and up for a small lease rate to those who cannot afford them, to be swapped for larger models as the kids grow. Kids could be encouraged to link up and ride together. Training programs could be instituted, with “licenses” for those shifting from the sidewalk to the street for the ride to middle school, in an attempt to trump the rite-of-passage for driving. If everyone was doing it, then perhaps kids wouldn’t grow up like my teens — afraid and unwilling to ride on the street.

    The problem is, some of the children would end up killed. And what politician wants to be responsible for that? Moreover, at the high school my oldest attends, a child recently had their bike stolen. The response was an e-mail to all parents with a note from the principal reminding them that the school was not responsible for bicycles, and theft was common.

  • Larry Littlefield

    P.S. our second child is considering a variety of public and Catholic high schools for next year. All but one are within bike range, and in two cases with very inconvenient transit connections, a bicycle ride is almost certainly the fastest and easiest way there. But riding to school is considered out of the question — far too dangerous. And I can’t really object.

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