The Transport for London (TfL) board has given final approval for four new cycle superhighways including the 18-mile east to west route dubbed the Crossrail for the Bike - under a £160m cycle upgrade package to be delivered between now and the end of 2016.
As well as new routes running East-West and North-South and on cycle superhighway one (CS1) and the inner section of CS5 there are upgrades to the four existing cycle superhighway routes (CS2, CS3, CS7 and CS8).
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: ‘We know that Londoners want these routes and that they want them to be delivered to the high standard I promised, as quickly as possible. I will keep that promise and spades will begin hitting the ground next month.
'Thanks to the skill of TfL’s engineers and traffic managers, we have made changes which keep the cycle track and junctions segregated, while taking out much less of the route’s motor traffic capacity. I now look forward to the transformation that these planned routes will bring – not just for people who cycle now, but for the thousands of new cyclists they will attract.’
TfL will now launch a programme of communication and traffic management to ensure minimum disruption, including further investment in traffic signal technology to allow more fluid management of traffic in changing situations. TfL will also work with businesses providing advice on moving deliveries during the busiest times.
Sir Peter Hendy CBE, London’s transport commissioner, said: ‘Cycling is clearly now a major transport option in London, with over 170,000 bike journeys now made across central London every single day. These schemes will revolutionise cycling in the capital and further demonstrate how London is leading the way in making its roads safe for all road users.
'There will, naturally, be some disruption due to these works but we have some of the world’s leading highway and traffic engineers, traffic models and modellers working tirelessly to ensure that this is kept to a minimum.’
The green light comes after months of wrangling with local authorities along the route, with the final revised plans taking account of concerns from the City of London over traffic flows close to the Embankment area.