Revenge and road danger

Almost all cycling campaigners agree that a cycling society — “mass cycling” — would be desirable. The world would be a better, happier, healthier, wealthier place, and our towns and cities nicer places to live, if far more people cycled and far more of our journeys were made by bicycle.  And there is little controversy left about the barriers to cycling and the fact that fear of traffic and hostile conditions for cycling are the biggest and most impenetrable barriers to cycling in this country.  Large volumes of fast moving and dangerously driven motor vehicles create an environment in which most people never cycle.  This is old ground I shouldn’t need to go over again.

The big disagreement is how we break down that barrier. One set of campaigners want to separate the large volumes of fast moving motor vehicles from cyclists.  The other thinks that there is a better way: separation is unnecessary and perhaps even undesirable.  Their alternative is to tame to motorcar.  They would teach drivers how to overtake properly, how not to park in dangerous places, and how not to drive a tipper truck all the way into the advanced stop box while preparing for the left turn at the change of the lights.  And if they demonstrate that they can’t be taught, ban em and bang em up.  Teach drivers to play nice and the barrier to cycling will tumble, the argument goes.

As a typical cycling forum poster puts it:

I don’t even know why the councils in this country bother with cycle lanes. The money would be better spent educating idiots on the road on how terrifying them driving 6 inches from us at 50mph is.

It’s a response to the road danger problem that I have every sympathy with.  Every time somebody passes within touching distance I want to reach out and touch, and cause damage or inspire a little of the fear and discomfort in return.  I usually can’t watch helmet cam footage: I know that something bad is going to happen and that somebody is going to get away never accepting that what they did was wrong.  I desperately want them to know just what a fucking terrible thing they did.

The world in which tame motor cars roam the streets is a world in which every evil, selfish, or simply ignorant motorist has been made to realise that they have done wrong and made to feel shame and remorse for all those times they nearly took a life.  It’s a world in which we get our revenge on all those individuals who wronged us.

The problem is that road danger isn’t really all about individuals.  Ian Roberts describes this peculiar way of thinking about road danger in The Energy Glut: our focus on individual “accidents” and the individual who is to blame.  The pedestrian who jaywalked, the drunk driver, the person who made The Bad Judgment to cause it all.  And when it costs a life, we want revenge for That Bad Judgment.  This is how we think in the “road safety” paradigm: something went wrong, and we can educate, engineer, or enforce that out.  The Human Being and the Motor Car are perfectly able to peacefully coexist, it’s just that idiot needs dealing with.

It’s a nice idea.  But it doesn’t work.  Revenge won’t solve the road danger problem.  Education can’t solve it.  And “road safety” should have been written off decades ago.

For six decades road deaths and injuries have primarily been reduced simply by the human beings getting out of the way.  Education, engineering, and enforcement have had at best a minor role in cutting the rate of death and injury to cyclists over the year.  What really cut the number of deaths to cyclists was people stopping cycling, leaving only a few of the most confident, assertive, and powerful on the roads. Even those of us left have cut our distance, and set personal limits on the sort of roads we’re willing to ride on.  The Human Being and the Motor Car do not peacefully coexist.  The Human Beings get out of the way.

Why won’t revenge, education, and road safety eliminate road danger and make the roads a nice objectively and subjectively safe place to ride?  Because road danger isn’t all about the individual and their preventable mistakes.  Sometimes the pedestrian wasn’t jaywalking and the driver wasn’t drunk.  The “accident” happened simply because putting metal with that sort of kinetic energy — even the kinetic energy of a 20mph car — right next to soft fleshy people who are going about their daily lives is dangerous in any situation, no matter how well everybody behaves.  Death and injury is an inevitable result of mixing people and motor vehicles.  Idiots can make it even more probable, but it will always happen.  Ian Roberts goes right ahead and blames the car lobby for suppressing any thoughts that the car, rather than a few rogue users, might be an inherently dangerous thing to have around — but you really must read the book for that story.

Even if it were possible to weed out all of the bad apples, there will always be enough road danger to put people off cycling.  But realistically it’s not even possible to weed out all of the bad apples — or to force them to be good.  It is frequently claimed that “strict liability” will enforce good behaviour, and even that it has been proven to work — just look at the Dutch, they have strict liability and there’s loads of cycling there.  It’s another very attractive idea: if you come near me with that thing, you’ll pay.  I think most British cyclists see “strict liability” and salivate at the idea of that idiot, desperate the overtake through that little gap at 50mph, being forced to sit there and suppress his urges.  We taste that sweet revenge again.  But the real idiot won’t wait.  As David Hembrow points out, the Netherlands has idiots too.

That’s not to say that there is no reason for enforcing the rules, punishing the wrongdoing, improving driver education, and ensuring justice for the wronged. Only that those are not the things that will bring us closer to a world where mass cycling can happen.

Vengeance is no way to go about establishing productive policy, no matter how desperately we yearn for it.  Policy needs to be based on what works, and when it comes to establishing mass cycling we can try any number of policies, but as long as we are asking squidgy and snappable humans to share with hard objects possessed of such large quantities of kinetic energy, none of them ever will.  Get rid of those hard objects — separate them off — and we can make progress.

37 thoughts on “Revenge and road danger”

  1. Isn’t this a false dichotomy? Or is it true that we can’t at least *attempt* to tame the motor vehicle whilst wanting the segregated paths?

    Education and enforcement changed the cultural perception of drink driving to the extent that it’s (probably the only) motoring offence that’s beyond the pale (even for Clarkson).

    I’m not sure why people are so pessimistic about it.

    1. You can attempt to tame the motor vehicle if you like. It seems to get it the wrong way around though. My next post argues that we should separate while waiting for the motor vehicle reduction. Separation is a far more realistic prospect.

      1. If better cycle paths get more people cycling, that to some extent will tame the motor vehicle, because there will be less people driving as a consequence.

        And less people driving subsequently makes it politically easier to institute measures that restrict the motor vehicle.

      2. Do you think that, in a London context, separated infrastructure is more realistically acheivable than a blanket or near-blanket 20mph limit? I know that’s not the same thing as motor vehicle reduction, but it’s got to be a start..? (afaik Ken Livingstone is in favour of wide rollout of 20mph limits across London, correct me if I’m wrong).

        I’m thinking mostly in a Zone 2/3 context.. I know in Z1 there are multi-lane roads & a dense network of alleyways such that you could close some lanes / alleys for seperated infrastructure, but in Z2/3 street space is still fairly limited (plenty of one-lane-each-way roads with narrow pavements – not much room for cycle infrastructure on many of S. London’s main thoroughfares hence the less-than-ideal compromise of the Superhighways) but there aren’t so many realistic options for roads you could close to traffic.

        Also – 20mph limits are something that makes a difference to cyclists, but that many (current) non-cyclists can be persuaded to get behind.

      3. Sure blanket 20mph would be easier and would be nice.

        It won’t give us mass cycling.

        Separation is the most realistic intervention which works.

        I don’t know how many more ways I can say this.

      4. I agree in as much as 20mph limits alone won’t bring about truly mass cycling and don’t go far enough. It is however a politically easy intervention that could realistically be acheived in as little as 3 years (if Ken wins in 2012, anyway) and which (especially combined with oil price inflation etc.) IMHO could increase cycling’s modal share by a third or half. If citywide 20mph is shown to bring about a significant reduction in KSIs, it will (i think) pave the way for more assertive traffic-slowing measures like “Play Streets” where the car is no longer king.

        I know it’s chicken-and-egg, but why don’t we campaign for things that seem likely to actually happen, and which will gain us at least some additional modal share, and only then move on to the more expensive & politically difficult stuff? From a London point of view, campaigning for across-the-board segregated infrastructure when we only have tiny modal share doesn’t seem realistic. Local bits of segregation to deal with the most dangerous bits of road (Elephant & Castle, Vauxhall, Aldgate, Hyde Park Corner etc.), sure. Segregated routes out of town where space is plentiful and the roads are full of 60mph traffic, sure. I just can’t quite work out how separation is a realistic prospect in places like Walworth Rd, Brixton Rd, Holloway Rd, Kingsland Rd etc., until such time as cycling increases & driving decreases to a point where bus lanes can be closed to make dedicated cycle lanes.

      5. I think all should acknowledge that having much more separated, protected infrastructure is important to make cycling mainstream. I think this strategy is an important part of the reason for success in NL, DK, and several cities around the world. I have still to see a convincing argument that we cannot or should not have a dual strategy, though. As they have partly had in NL and DK, especially in the 4 year project in Odense, DK. (IMHO)
        Even if some of us deem one side of a dual strategy as more realistic, why not attempt to find common ground, as for example. :
        1) Build GOOD, well maintained infrastructure that is “difficult” to infringe on , and focus on needs of cyclists and complete networks ( rather than putting patches of poor infrastructure here and there, where it is “easy” )
        2) Do all of or a select subset of the other things, including 20mph / 30km/h speed limits and traffic calming, enforcement, strict liability, training, promotion of cycling, training for cyclists, rectify car subsidies etc, etc.

        I’d be perfectly happy with using 80% of the funds on planning, building and maintaining infrastructure. But I think we need less than 80% of the focus in politics on segregation and construction… ( 60 – 70% perhaps ? )
        ** A pragmatic approach could also help us arrive at at a stage where the cycling advocacy “in-fighting” is much reduced. That is my hope anyway. In the Cycling Embassy texts you linked to in a reply to me, I think I saw quite a bit of pragmatism.
        (As an aside, I have heard John Franklin, author of Cyclecraft, talk in favour of pragmatism: Cycleways are very useful as an option to cycling in dense, fast traffic. )

  2. “For six decades road deaths and injuries have primarily been reduced simply by the human beings getting out of the way.”

    …which is why it is rather dangerous to go full throttle down the segregation route.

    I know that you are interested in campaigning for ‘proper’ facilities that segregate motor vehicles from cycles, rather than t’other way round, but a stronger emphasis on motor traffic reduction rather than ‘give us cycle paths’ is much more likely to deliver the goods for everyone, not just cyclists.

    1. Why is it so dangerous?

      Do you think it could be worse than what we have now? Heh. If you’re worried about facilities putting people off, too late. Everybody was put off decades ago.

      An emphasis on motor traffic reduction is not going to work. It might work on already very quiet and very slow roads — the Dutch, after all, deal with the residential streets and side streets that way — but not on the bigger roads. Motor traffic reduction is obviously something that we here all want, and I guess the ultimate theme of this blog, but we have to consider what is politically feasible at the moment. Separation is a far more realistic goal, and a first step on the path to phasing out motor vehicles.

      1. It’s dangerous because, done badly, it feeds into the concept of ‘getting the human beings out of the way’ which you rightly criticise.

        Clearly most people, including all the main campaigning groups, want to see good segregation, but for the most part it is even more politically unachievable than speed/volume reduction. Residents are happy to see their streets stopped up against through traffic and made 20 mph but shopkeepers won’t give up parking on main streets (where we need it for segregation) for anything.

        In any case there is simply NO cash for expensive cycle paths. Where I live the local transport budget is £1.30 per person this year for local transport improvements on everything: footways, cycle paths, bus stops, bus lanes, new street lighting – the lot. In other words, if the money was spent on nothing else it might get a few hundred yards of cycle path. And this year none of it is being spent on cycling.

      2. “It’s dangerous because, done badly, it feeds into the concept of ‘getting the human beings out of the way’ which you rightly criticise.”

        But it’s too late for that. WAY too late for that. Everybody has got themselves out of the way AND it’s already being done badly because cyclists aren’t involving themselves in its development. All that bollocks shared use stuff and bike tracks that are too narrow to use? That was built on the watch the old guard.

        You shouldn’t campaign for stopping up residential streets, because if it’s done badly then it will make cycling even more difficult for the people who are restricting themselves to quiet residential streets. Oh, wait, are you not campaigning for it to be done badly? Exactly.

        There is no funding for proper cycling infrastructure in much of the country at the moment. That’s why we’re trying to build support for that funding. There is no cash because nobody has ever asked for the cash because they’ve always sat on their arses and said “it can’t happen because….”.

        And when that tiny little bit of money does trickle in, I want to make bloody sure that councils know how to use properly it instead of wasting it on more of the bollocks shared-use stuff that we got under the “shut up because it’ll never happen” model of cycle campaigning.

  3. Joe: Thanks for a thoughtful, almost balanced post on this subject.
    In the Norwegian Road Authority cycling manual, there is a scheme for classification of routes according to how much motorised traffic there is and at what speeds. At high speeds or volumes, the scheme suggests segregated infrastructure. Reykjavik city is adopting the scheme as a rough guide. You are in a way saying that the Dutch use similar thinking.
    I think it is rather self-evident something along those lines is the answer, not either or. The question remains where one draws the line, e.g. when a completely segregated facility is needed. Furthermore there will be a debate as to what sort and class of facilities should be used, and how good the quality and service needs to be for the facilities to be really helpful. Special care needs to be taken regarding visibility (and preferably priority) for cyclists at junctions, as they have recently “discovered” in Denmark.
    (Almost) no matter how much you segregate, cars/lorries/buses and green, healthy, soft modes will mingle at some junctions, and local streets/roads.

  4. You say : “That’s not to say that there is no reason for enforcing the rules, punishing the wrongdoing, improving driver education, and ensuring justice for the wronged.”

    Exactly : We can and need to do both. Neither is a panacea, nor realistic as the sole solution. (Not segregation either, as it almost seems you imply, Joe)

    And I also find it quite self-evident, that, in addition to GOOD, well maintained facilities, with exemplary solutions at junctions, facilities that are non-compulsory (at least until 99% agree they serve their purpose well), we need efforts on “taming” / reducing the speeds of cars, especially in built-up areas, and foster the mode of co-operation, through campaigns and courses. Probably compulsory courses for many groups of drivers, inexpensively and accessible for cyclists. (Like bikeability /Cyclecraft in the UK)
    Our societies, our towns and cities, we humans are far too complicated to warrant proposals of singular approaches. At least in the area of transport and streets, and I presume in most other areas.

  5. Motor traffic reduction can be counter productive in improving safety. My journey can actually be harder during the summer when there are less cars on the main roads, as there is less congestion and they move faster.

  6. I agree that driving standards have deteriorated enormously in the last 10-20 years and existing driver training and testing simply doesn’t address road safety issues well enough – the goal is passing the test and everything else is secondary and often forgotten once a pass is achieved.

    Part of the problem (IMHO) is the concentration on enforcement of speed to the detriment of driving quality. I realise that’s a whole other discussion but I believe it’s spawned a generation of drivers who genuinely think that as long as they keep within the speed limit then nothing else matters.

    I would love to see re-testing every few years and compulsory advanced driver training. More emphasis on observation and consideration for other roads users in the current test would be welcome too. I don’t necessarily think that separation is the key – it’s not practical in many places and as others have pointed out road users will still meet at junctions.

  7. Problems with separation /segregation ( I am not saying they can not be overcome. I think none of them are total “blockers”)
    * Facilities tend to be of poor quality, and worse regarding maintenance
    * Facilities tend not to be respected by drivers, city officials, parties engaging in construction, moving house etc)
    * In some settings (many driveways, side-streets) facilities will feel safer, but actually provide lower actual safety
    * Facilities take up space. Is it easier to reallocate space for cyclists, than to reduce posted speeds, and monitor + ticket ? Probably :-) But still often a headache, in tight places
    * Peak oil, new urbanism + urbanisation + cycle chic and perhaps economic downturn mean car traffic will be reduced, so why cover more grass with tarmac, and increase severity of floods etc, etc
    * When facilities are built, motorists will feel cyclists are obligated to to use them, regardless of standards/mainentance, usefulness/connectedness etc. Politicians in some places even pass laws / bylaws to enforce this. The result could be _reduced_ access for cyclists.

    This issue is not either or black/white. Besides remember the larger picture : 1. Cycling is viable as a mass-transit solution, with walking and public transport. Driving is not. ( Efficiency, pollution, global sustainable development, health ). If the polluter pays principle etc is used more, motoring is bound to become quite a bit more expensive. Not to mention if subsidies for is parking are reduced. Look to Donald Shoup (?)
    2. Cyclists live longer. The carnage on the roads is a magnitude lower than the Quality-AdjustedLifeYears gained by daily leisurely cycling for transport
    3. The ball is already rolling. Cycling is increasing in most countries, mayors see Bikesahring as a solution, and the safety in numbers effect, is reducing road danger. Increasing numbers should also solve part of the chicken and egg blockage in regards to investing in segregated cycling infrastructrure where it is really needed.

    Finally : Here is a post that agrees with your points. I think they look a little but too much over their shoulder.

    1. “Facilities tend to be of poor quality, and worse regarding maintenance”

      “Facilities tend not to be respected by drivers, city officials, parties engaging in construction, moving house etc)”

      We’ll have to add a page for that one.

      “In some settings (many driveways, side-streets) facilities will feel safer, but actually provide lower actual safety”

      “Peak oil, new urbanism + urbanisation + cycle chic and perhaps economic downturn mean car traffic will be reduced, so why cover more grass with tarmac, and increase severity of floods etc, etc”

      Then don’t — take it away from the general carriageway. This is about separating cars from people not separating people from cars. Push cars out of the places where we need space for people. That means taking a bit of the space on multi-lane highways away from motor vehicles, but it means lots of other things as well, as the Dutch so. Dutch and Danish separation principles are about more than just building bike tracks alongside highways. Why do it? See original post.

      “When facilities are built, motorists will feel cyclists are obligated to to use them, regardless of standards/mainentance, usefulness/connectedness etc. Politicians in some places even pass laws / bylaws to enforce this. The result could be _reduced_ access for cyclists.”

      Any other objections, see here:

      1. Thanks. I think we agree, except for some slight nuances. That is if the text from the Embassy is our yardstick. Especially clear in the entry on forced usage of segregated facilities. (Which has not been affirmed as policy …)

        But it seems the links you posted to the Cycling Embassy are not really in agreement with these sentences in the blogentry :
        “Policy needs to be based on what works, and when it comes to establishing mass cycling we can try any number of policies, but as long as we are asking squidgy and snappable humans to share with hard objects possessed of such large quantities of kinetic energy, none of them ever will. Get rid of those hard objects — separate them off — and we can make progress.”
        The words “none of them ever will” and “Get rid of” lends themselves to misunderstanding, and perhaps sound like an expression of vengeance. While the body of the entry argues against the possible strawman (?) of vengeance ?

  8. Great post as always, Joe!

    Driver education has a massive role to play here. The lack of safety culture surrounding driving (when compared to the predominant safety cultures in most other life-threatening occupations – aviation, extreme sports, medicine, you name it) never ceases to boggle my mind.

    Traffic (not just cars) can be tamed in places, and it can be enough to make a difference. A 20mph limit, even if enforcement isn’t perfect, will cut in half the speed differential between an occasional cyclist on a leisure bike (as well as zeroing it, and making overtaking a complete non-issue for us lycra-louts). Strict liability and corporate manslaughter for commercial vehicles would make a huge difference (most cyclist KSIs in London are accidents involving money-making vehicles whether they be taxis, buses, HGVs or delivery vans), forcing drivers and operators to adopt workplace-like health & safety practices; adopting strict liability for businesses which operate vehicles is probably easier politically than forcing it upon individual private drivers.

    I have to partially disagree with one part of your statement: that there will always be enough road danger to put people off cycling. This might be true of some people & some situations, but every improvement you make, even the small ones, gets a few more people cycling, slows down the traffic a bit, makes life better for all of us, encourages a few more people to get on their bikes, and builds momentum for mass cycling. This /does/ seem to be happening in Inner London, at least. Heck, if we’re talking about the real bad apples of the road – drunk drivers, red light runners, uninsured drivers etc. – then you’re not much better off as a pedestrian on the pavement than you are on a bike.

    The in-fighting that seems to have dominated cycle campaigning for the last few years might be relatively harmless in places where there’s zero funding or public support for cycling infrastructure of any kind, but in London at least we’re actually starting to get somewhere. Surely there is a sensible middle ground is as follows:- in densely populated areas, where traffic is choked, distances are small and space is scarce, go for traffic taming and share space with pedestrians where it’s safe and practical to do so; in more rural places where traffic speeds are necessarily higher but space is plentiful, build segregated infrastructure. If anything, the more difficult problem is justifying (politically) the cost of decent segregated infrastructure in places which currently have much lower rates of cycling than Inner London.

  9. To quote wulfhound: “Driver education has a massive role to play here.”

    As far as I’m concerned, the only education that will make any difference to a car driver is that which they would receive whilst riding a bike in traffic.

    Yet you can’t reasonably expect most drivers to do that, since they are (quite reasonably) not prepared to cycle on our roads, for reasons we already know.

    It seems commonly accepted that drivers in the Netherlands drive more carefully around cyclists, because they are cyclists themselves.

    And how did the Netherlands manage to convert so many drivers to cycling?? Hmm…

  10. I don’t have much time for revenge-based approaches (enforcement, stricter liability etc), or education-based approaches (whether educating the cyclist or the motorist). You have to change the infrastructure so that it is less hostile. But it does not have to be perfect: cycle lanes are adequate if the traffic is tamed, and it’s entirely feasible to tame traffic by narrowing traffic lanes and breaking up forward visibility. If you keep at it for a decade or two, and don’t get distracted by the separatists…

    1. I don’t see how believing in enforcement, stricter liability can be equated with feeling the need for revenge. ( Is that not what the blog-entry and this comment are saying ? )

  11. What evidence is there, that the Netherlands “converted drivers to cycling”? And what exactly would that mean anyway: drivers selling their cars, or occasional recreational cycling on summer Sundays?

  12. My chief concern about any approach that argues that me must separate bicycles and cars is one of shear space. Narrow separate cycle lanes are worse, in my opinion, than no cycle lanes at all. It’s no more practical to educate all cyclists and all pedestrians to use these sensibly than it is to educate all motorists to respect other road users.

    I’ve yet to encounter a cycle lane next to a footpath that wasn’t littered with pedestrians. That’s fine if you just want to encourage more leisurely weekend cycling. But utterly impractical to encouraging it as a form of mass transport.

    And separating cycles lanes from both, like they’ve done around UCL, is a death trap. I won’t use any lane that doesn’t give me the room to avoid other gormless cyclists who are paying attention to what they’re doing.

    Of course, this is a straw man. The UCL cycle lane is an abomination, and it’s unfair to use it as a case in point that cycle lanes are universally bad. But it is an example of what we get given in practice when we ask for separate lanes.

    But if the proposition is a network of 2 metre-wide-in-each direction cycle lanes that are separated by a curb from sidewalks and contiguously and continuously connect everywhere I could conceivably want to go in greater London (that is, everywhere in greater London). That’s a campaign I would sign up to.

    Short of that, I really do think that our labours are better spent asserting our rights to use the existing infrastructure, and campaigning to improve the safety of that infrastructure.

    1. Painted lanes on roads work fine for adults – if the traffic is slowed (which it will be if you narrow their space and break up forward visbility).

      You also need quiet routes (sometimes using the pavements of main roads to connect side streets) for the young/nervous.

      The trick is not to confuse the two.

    2. Ed, you must subscribe to David Arditti’s blog if you haven’t already, starting with this post, which explains the history of the funny narrow cycle track near UCL.

      (Incidentally, despite all of its problems, that track still attracts many people to it away from the alternatives. It may be so narrow that it gets congested, and it may have those weird bits, but people would still rather ride on that than the Euston Road or Holborn…)

      That cycle track is what we get given when a small group of cyclists, unsupported by the larger campaigning community, fight for good infrastructure but are foiled by politicians and engineers who force compromise. And as David explains, one of the reasons that the politicians and engineers managed to ruin the plans is because the wider community of cycle campaigners failed to give Camden CC the support to get it done, and the vehicular cycling ideologists even campaigned against the original plans.

      But those awful shared pavements and other bollocks? That’s what we get without asking at all. If we ask for good cycling facilities, there’s at least a chance we might get something that’s OK. If we ask for nothing at all, councils will just carrying on building the bollocks that nobody wants and nobody has ever asked for, but which they’ve been building for years regardless.

  13. I’m not sure that working for accountability from the motorised is revenge – although plenty of motorists may see it as such.

    Furthermore, if you think motorists can be seperated out from cyclists, they are certainly likely to see the emasures required fort hat as revenge. And is seperation going to happen on the vast majority of roads thatw e have to cycle on? I doubt it.

    It does worry me that segregation is seen by some bloggers as the key answer to all of the problems for cycling – fro em it is minimal a t best.

    But I am pleased to see danger reduction being supported, and an awareness that casualty number falls have often occurred for negative reasons.

  14. You’ve mentioned my pet peeve — the lack of education. I don’t think we can say this hasn’t been effective because it hasn’t been tried. Through advertising, PSA’s, signage, and enforcement based on education, we can change how most people in our area drive. Then the visitors will have good role models to follow.

    I agree with segregating traffic 100%. But car drivers have been allowed to be inattentive, self-righteous assholes for too long. They have to be taught to drive cooperatively or be forcibly removed from the road.

  15. I really don’t see a dichotomy here. Even if we get segregated cyclepaths on all major routes, or an entirely separate network of cycleways, it would still be good to have 20mph speed limits on residential roads, for the “last mile” access to/from destinations to the cycle routes. (Having segregated cycleways on _every_ road in the UK is hardly feasible. If we get to the point where there are no cars on residential roads the world will be an entirely different place.)

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