I make no apologies for returning to matters concerning the city centre. Big changes are being made to the area's traffic arrangements. Thankfully there doesn't seem to be any which are negative for cyclists.
On 28th November Edward Healey (Area Manager, Sustrans) and myself were briefed by Mike Waters and Nigel Mills of the council's Transport Planning department about the improvements to the pedestrian route between the Railway Station and Bull Yard. Cycling will be legal along most of the route.
Currently there is no reasonable cycle route from the station to Broadgate.
The only legal cycling route means dodging the cars on the gyratory. Cyclists have two illegal choices, the pavement or the wrong way along Eaton Road (shown).
The council is considering widening the pavement shown in the left of the image. The footway would then be suitable for shared pedestrian/cyclist use. Unfortunately that might cost more than the council is willing to spend on a scheme which will only last until the Friargate development starts, probably within the next 20 years.
On a more positive note, the Department of Transport is now more willing than ever to allow low-cost contraflow cycling schemes. The civil engineering works might involve little more than the addition of a small "except cyclists" sign underneath the main red "No Entry" signs.
At the ring road the subway is being replaced by a Toucan crossing. At Toucan crossings cyclists have the same rights as pedestrians.
To calm motorists before they reach the new Toucan crossing, there will be traffic signals to the right of the point shown; at the end of Manor Road, on the slip road from the westbound ring road carriageway and on the roundabout itself.
Cycling towards the city centre from the new crossing over the ring road towards the city centre will be legal:
The subway under Greyfriars Road will go, replaced by a seven metre wide Zebra crossing. North of Greyfriars Road, Warwick Road will be reduced to a single carriageway with a lane in each direction. So all the space filled with buses and cars in the image to the right will be given to pedestrians and cyclists!
I understand that the giant planter at the end of Warwick Lane (between the British Heart Foundation shop and Methodist Central Hall) will go, encouraging cyclists to divert to the right when travelling towards Broadgate.
If a route were provided using Warwick Lane, a cyclist's contraflow would have to be provided on Greyfriars Lane south of its junction with Salt Lane.