Cycle Industry News)
Transport for London’s annual Attitudes to Cycling Report has revealed a key effect of building for active travel – approximately a third of London’s cyclists started in the 12 months leading to September 2015.
In describing their motivations for active travel, more Londoners have cited an increased feeling of safety as a reason for taking to cycling, or at least considering doing so. Yet this feeling of increased safety is contrasted by less than 50% of cyclists giving a “good” rating to the availability of cycle lanes and other infrastructure.
In a huge step in the right direction for building a case for extension of safe infrastructure, 70% of current cyclists in London say that they have increased the amount of time in the saddle as a direct result of Cycle Superhighways. 69% of intended users say the safe cycling routes have increased the amount they plan to cycle.
The demographic most likely to take to two-wheels remains 22-44 year old male workers, although anyone who has been on the now separated from traffic cycle superhighways will tell you of an obvious rise in other demographics too. Indeed, the report suggests that 28% of children are cycling to school “regularly”, with 62% of kids having access to a bike.
Perhaps more interesting is those in ‘pre-contemplation’ – a segment described as people mulling over the idea of cycling more in future. of non cyclists 82% placed themselves in this bracket, stating they could be open to the idea in future.
In keeping with prior trends, both 7% of cyclists and non cyclists have ‘lapsed’, meaning that they began to cycle but didn’t make it a regular habit.
Under Motivations and Deterrents, the key barrier for many, despite the aforementioned rise in confidence, does remain a perception of danger and high traffic volume.
Over eight in ten agree that cyclists remain vulnerable to traffic, though this perception is decreasing.
A contentious issue is the funding given to cycling and the concern that this figure isn’t set to grow from its already low base in the short term.
Londoners tend to agree that there’s a shortcoming in investment, with three in ten saying the progress isn’t being funded well enough. 39% of cyclists feel strongly about the issue and would like to see more spend on safe cycling.
With responses gathered by September 2015, the results don’t paint a reflection of some of London’s 2016 segregated path openings. Nonetheless, they do reveal that 11% of Londoners have thus far used a Cycle Superhighway, rising substantially to 37% of those classing themselves as regular cyclists.
21% of non cyclists intend to use the highways in the future, while 56% of cyclists said they would definitely use them going forwards.
…TfL reveal that three quarters of Londoners agree that increased cycling has made a positive contribution in terms of quality of life and social benefits. Four in ten would recommend cycling to others.
Time saving is a widely cited benefit among respondents, who believe (rightly) that cycling is the fastest way to travel in the capital.