Photo of Bristol’s substandard cycling infrastructure goes viral

“‘Excellent’ ‘Bristol’s newest cycling infrastructure’,” Ben Nathan tweeted above a photo that went viral of Park Row with its plastic beadings lying in the road and vehicles parked both on the pavement and blocking the bike path.

“I took the picture because I finally cracked up seeing the continuing lawlessness and impunity in Bristol over parking on the sidewalks and the blocking of sidewalks and cycle lanes,” said Ben, 40, who lives in Stokes Croft and runs a hospitality business.

“I see vulnerable pedestrians and cyclists put in dangerous situations all day, here and on my cycle journey to Bath where I work. There is a complete lack of active travel infrastructure here, and no plans for anything major.

“I left London three years ago and the difference in car priority and lack of established cycle lanes is truly shocking and frightening for a major European city in 2022, with a long-established mayor and administration.

“Parking on the roadway is prohibited in London. But in Bristol, with no law enforcement or segregation infrastructure, cycle lanes and sidewalks are effectively used as parking areas or loading docks. It reminds me of rural Albania or North Macedonia!


Read more: “Cycling in Bristol has never been so frustrating”


Union counselor Marley Bennett recently tweeted “why quality walking and cycling infrastructure is so important”.

Rather than improving cycle infrastructure, however, a cycle lane has been removed from Cheltenham Road.

But despite the heavily criticized ‘improvements’, transport cabinet member Don Alexander called the controversial new junction of Cheltenham Road and Ashley Road an ‘excellent’ project.

Cycling activist Sarah Berry is among those who challenged that statement.

She said: “As a cyclist who lives at this crossroads, I can tell you there’s nothing great about it if your priority is to stay alive.”

She later tweeted, “The first thing everyone should have to do when they become a councilman is do three local rides: one on a bike, one in a wheelchair, and one with a buggy.”

Alexander is an avowed fan of buses, who also regularly cruises around Bristol on a Voi electric scooter.

Bristol24/7 has requested an interview with Alexander to discuss what the City Council is doing to improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians across the city.

Main photo: Ben Nathan

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