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Boris Johnson announces “Crossrail for the bicycle” through East London

PUBLISHED: 11:33 08 March 2013 | UPDATED: 11:33 08 March 2013

Bow roundabout, which is set to be linked to Stratford later this year

Bow roundabout, which is set to be linked to Stratford later this year

Archant

Cyclists are set to benefit from miles of new routes through East London as part of a £913million investment in the capital’s cycle network.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson unveiled ambitious plans for a “Crossrail for the bicycle” this week, with part of the 15 mile route announced linking Tower Bridge with Stratford and beyond.

The east London stretch of the “cycle Crossrail” route is to pass from Tower Bridge, along Cable Street, through Canary Wharf and Stratford and along the A13 through Newham towards Barking.

Mr Johnson promised the plans will create a “paradise of cycling”.

“Our new routes will give people the confidence to get in the saddle”, he said.

“This plan marks a profound shift in my ambitions and intentions for the bicycle.

“The reason I am spending almost £1bn on this is my belief that helping cycling will not just help cyclists. It will create better spaces for everyone.”

The “cycle superhighway” extension between Bow and Stratford is also due to be completed this year, and will include separated cycle lanes.

Of the £913m figure announced by Transport for London to fund the project, only “in the region of £300m” has been secured – with the remaining £600m dependent on receipt of government grants.

The London Assembly’s transport committee Caroline Pidgeon AM called for investment in cycle networks to be doubled.

“Far from seeing evidence of a serious commitment to a ‘cycling revolution’, the Mayor’s vision lacks ambition for his pledges to make London safer and more inviting for cycling”, she said.

“While £913 million may seem an impressive figure, its impact will be diluted over ten years and is not a significant advancement on current funding levels.”

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