Tag Archives: Greater Bedminster NP

Ashton Vale changes due to Metrobus, Metrowest & South Bristol Link Road

The South Bristol Link Road (SBLR) opened in December 2016. It has a parallel shared use path for pedestrians and cycles which connects at Long Ashton to the Festival Way (National Cycle Network 33). It then links at the other end to the Malago Greenway at Hengrove. There is a spur connecting through the Long Ashton Park & Ride to the maintenance track / cycleway alongside the guided busway between Long Ashton and Temple Meads.

The Metrobus busway will overfly the Temple Meads to Portbury rail line at Ashton Vale on a new deck. The maintenance track / cycleway continues and terminates at Ashton Vale Road, where the railway is crossed by a level crossing (See sheet 201749-PA-908 at Travelwest https://s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/travelwest/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/avtm-general-arrangement-plans.pdf). On the opening of the railway to passenger trains to Portishead (as part of Metrowest), it is currently proposed to close the level crossing (providing a new access from the west to the industrial estate). This will also close the public footpath crossing to Barons Close.

The current proposed route for cyclists and pedestrians between Ashton Vale Road and Winterstoke Road is a diversion of about 300 metres via a ramp to Ashton Road, and a convoluted series of crossings, ramps and subways, all of which fall short of current guidelines for such facilities due to gradients, and width.

For cyclists travelling to South Bedminster / Ashton Gate, the diversion adds considerably to the journey time. Travelling towards the city, the route is much less attractive, more inconvenient and congested at peak times with school foot traffic.

We have written to MetroWest as part of the ‘Ashton & Pill micro-consolation’ suggesting that the direct link between the Metrobus cycleway and Winterstoke Road is maintained by creating a subway under the railway at Barons Close. This would require onward facilities on Winterstoke Road to link to existing cycleways.

PS There was a dramatic ‘Santa Cycle Ride’ in December 2016 to mark the opening of the SBLR. Check out the Flickr gallery.

Southville Bridge abandoned – what’s next?

One of the more iconic cycling schemes in the city has been abandoned (here and here). The Southville Bridge was approved in 2014 and would have linked Camden Road and through to North Street in Bedminster to the Harbourside. It remains an important part of the Greater Bedminster neighbourhood cycling plan.

Costs had escalated alarmingly so Mayor George Ferguson pulled the project. The budget will be reallocated into other cycling projects and there has been agreement from DfT for an extended delivery timetable. Nevertheless, it is disappointing news that this useful link for one of the areas of the city with increasing numbers of people cycling.

This adds to an alarming number of Bristol cycling projects that have been recently cancelled after months of work, and other schemes having a major impact on cycling:

  • Ashton Avenue bridge is closed with a detour,
  • Prince St bridge is closed with a temporary walking bridge,
  • proposed improvements to Banana Bridge abandoned,
  • cycling elements of Bedminster Bridge Metrobus changes are not clear
  • Gaol Ferry Bridge continues to have detours and poor provision for cycling during construction of Wapping Wharf.
  • Merchant’s Dock improvements remain bogged down.

Pragmatically the redirect of funds makes sense. In principle it does not. Limited cycling money being used to shore up schemes that should have properly included cycling infrastructure from the start (we’re looking at you, Temple Quay Enterprise Zone and MetroBus, and at all the major developments). What message does it give BCC officers and others who are actively/passively working against cycling? “Continue as you are, don’t think about cycling, someone else will be swoop in and fix the mess later.”

This is what the council is proposing to redistribute funds to.

  • 20mph – complete the citywide roll out to cover 80% of streets
  • Easton Way – extend the 5m wide segregated route to connect the Frome Greenway and the Railway Path.
  • Old Market – alternative route to the busy roundabout
  • Cattle Market Road – part of the CAF2 bid but now in CAF1. But why is this not funded through the Local Enterprise Zone?
  • Bedminster Roundabout – to enhance Metrobus changes
  • Clarence Road – ‘snagging’ / replacing of the ‘toby bollards’ (in the news recently)
  • Baldwin Street – to tie in the ends of this segregated route.
  • City Centre – being remodelled by Metrobus and now with ‘a delineated cycle route’
  • Old City permeability – ‘traffic calming on Corn St’. WTF!

This comes at a time when it’s reported that the budget squeeze puts brakes on cycle safety pledge, while the Minister ‘hangs head in shame’ over British cycling provision, and yet George Osborne is told that investing in cycling will save £47 billion.

Community Speedwatch in Bedminster 2015

There are a number of Community Speedwatch groups helping to make the 20mph areas in Bristol more effective. The group in Greater Bedminster is made up of BCyC members and they have shared the results of their observations. Figures from 2014 showed that 20mph limits were having an effect but with some specific problem areas.

In 2015 over a thousand vehicles were checked with 14% going over 25mph (including one at 46mph!). There is a noticable improvement over 2014, however the threshold for recording has increased in 2015 from 24 to 26mph. The group is not going to monitor Raleigh Road any more as a new speed table appears to have had a significant effect.

There are occasional training sessions run by the police for those who wish to join or set up a Speedwatch group. You can find out more from the police website.

Date Time Duration Location Total Vehicles Speeding % Average of speeders
31/03/15 09:05 30 North Street 113 20 18% 27.7 mph
15/05/15 15:30 30 Duckmoor Road 107 26 24% 28.8 mph
02/02/15 09:00 30 Duckmoor Road 80 19 24% 28.3 mph
27/04/15 09:25 15 Duckmoor Road 123 9 7% 27.8 mph
15/05/15 15:30 30 Duckmoor Road 107 26 24% 29.0 mph
29/10/15 09:00 30 Raleigh Road outbound 43 4 9% 26.3 mph
05/11/15 09:05 35 Duckmoor Road 82 21 26% 27.6 mph
26/11/15 08:50 35 Bedminster Parade 136 11 8% 27.4 mph
12/12/15 09:45 25 North Street 176 6 3% 29.3 mph
17/12/15 09:15 30 Bedminster Parade 114 7 6% 26.9 mph
        1081 149 14%  

A Modest Proposal #4: Clanage Road Roundabout and the Festival Way

If you want to scare yourself rigid, pop along to Clanage Road roundabout on any weekday in term time at 3.15pm. That’s the time that 1,500 kids pour out of Ashton Park School and onto the fast busy roundabout on the A369. This is a key hub on the F11 Inner Orbital Cycling Freeway in the BCyC strategic cycle network and close to F8 Festival Way Quietway.

BCyC members have been working with local residents on ideas to improve walking and cycling and the junction has been adopted as one of the priorities for the Greater Bedminster Community Partnership (see TrafficChoices tracker).

A paper making the case for change is here: Clanage-Road-Roundabout-Strategic-Route-hub-proposal-May-2015. This has been presented to the local neighbourhood partnership, GBCP, and is based on a series of raised tables, crossings and improvements to reduce the speed of the estimated daily flow of 10-20,000 vehicles. It also aims to significantly increase the number of cycle movements from the current 1200-2000.

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Secure bicycle parking in Greater Bedminster

Do you regularly use a bicycle? Are you frustrated that it’s sometimes difficult to find a secure and accessible space to store your bike?

If the answer is yes, then you’re probably not alone. Since 2003 the population of ‘greater’ Bedminster (Southville and Bedminster) has risen by 22% and the number of people regularly walking and cycling has also risen significantly.

Greater Bedminster has the third lowest levels of car availability in the city. As many as 31% of households have no car (the Bristol average is 29%) and this area has the fourth highest proportion of people who travel to work on foot or by bicycle at 39% (the Bristol average is 27%). Source Greater Bedminster Neighbourhood Partnership Statistical Profile 2014, Bristol City Council http://www.bristol.gov.uk/…/NP10%20Bedminster%20Southville%…

Cycling is a convenient and healthy way to make short journeys to work, to the shops or for leisure. However, many people in greater Bedminster live in terrace houses where storage for bikes is limited and awkward. Some people have invested in secure bike storage boxes in their own gardens, but many people don’t have the space in their gardens or the resources for these.

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