The Plymouth Cycling Campaign (PCyC) meetings are open to all
- Anyone who would like to get involved in our campaigns to improve cycling in Plymouth and to help raise the profile of sustainable transport is very welcome to attend these meetings. We need all the help we can get!
- Or just come along to find out what we’re up to – you’ll be very welcome whatever type of cyclist you are, or even if you don’t cycle but would like to! And any comments you may have will be welcome too.
- Minutes of last meeting below agenda
Date of next open meeting on Zoom: Thursday 4th March 2021, 6 – 7.30 pm
The link will be live from 5.45pm so participants can check their Zoom settings or seek advice if they are not familiar with Zoom.
The link to the next Zoom meeting will be sent out to those subscribed to our email list a few days before the meeting. If you are not yet subscribed please sign up to our email list now (it’s free) to ensure you are sent the link.
- Welcome – JA
- Minutes of last open meeting – view on PCyC website
- Matters arising from minutes
- John Green, Low Carbon City Officer,Plymouth City Council
‘Multi-modal mobility hubs’ and other topics’ 10-15min
- Questions on above – 15mins max.
- Brief updates on key campaigns, current infrastructure construction and PCyC meetings / communications with PCC and other bodies. – PCyC committee
- Open discussion on topics raised by members
- Date of next open meeting
John Green’s talk will be about what the City Council are doing regarding the allocation of the Government’s Transforming Cities Funding in Plymouth, especially in relation to electrification and the provision of things like cycle parking and hire schemes. Please come along to hear what he has to say. You will have the oppotunity for questions from the floor.
We continue to campaign for various schemes throughout Plymouth (see our Campaigns page) and we will be updating the meeting on how these are progressing. Item 8 on the agenda offers you the chance to comment on what we do and make suggestions as to new campaigns or how we could do things differently.
Minutes of last PCyC Open Meeting 10 December 2020
Present on Zoom : John Abraham (chair), James Cleeton (Sustrans England South Director), Caitlin Hellyer, Sue Jennings, Hilary Neve, Graham Wilson, Jon Stevens, Stuart Mee, Bernhard Haas, Hayley Harvey, Jason Luff (Cycling UK), Susanne Bearne, Cllr Jeremy Goslin, Jonathan Tutte, Louise Luckcraft, Mike Kelly, Clare Smith (joined at 7pm)
Apologies : Bill Nicholson, Dave Gibbs, Jim Woffenden (PCC), Rosie Starr (PCC), Cllr Mark Coker, Cllr Richard Hosking
- James Cleeton gave a presentation on Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs).
PCC is planning for a pilot project in north Stonehouse. This followed on from an initial meeting facilitated by GW and SM between Gary Streeter MP, Paul Barnard from PCC and Sustrans. People kept in touch after this meeting and it has led to work around Ivybridge and in Plymouth.
The Stonehouse LTN project is funded by the DfT and run by Sustrans. Sustrans’ role is to get the project going and secure funding, but that will only come if PCC has a clear plan. The project began a couple months ago with money from the Active Travel Fund which was to support measures that could be implemented relatively quickly – LTNs were one such measure.
The idea of LTNs is to tackle rat-running, congestion, poor air quality which combine to make fearful places. Restricting traffic is a key way to address these issues. The traditional approach has been to apply a single filter to a road but that tends to lead to traffic just being displaced on to other roads and there is no shift in the mode of travel. London Borough of Waltham Forest has pioneered a new approach based around the idea that vehicle traffic uses main roads and people are encouraged to walk and cycle everywhere else. This changes neighbourhoods and leads to more social interactions as well as safer streets.
For the Stonehouse project planning starts by looking at lots of data on air quality, deprivation, observation of people’s movements around the area, etc. Covid may have had an impact on the baseline data as people’s travel patterns have changed. From this, the first step is to remove a through route in the project area while maintaining access to all homes / parts of the neighbourhood. Different tools exist to achieve this eg modal filter closing route to motor vehicles but not cyclists, bus gates, ANPR, one way streets, 4 way filter at a cross roads junction which creates a mini traffic free square. With all of these you need to consider the impact beyond the LTN, parking zones, loading etc.
Cllr Coker visited Waltham Forest and wants to create the same sort of thing in Plymouth. PCC is one of the first councils to act on this and are making a plan so that when funding is available they are ready to go. The Stonehouse area already has 16 sets of bollards so some work is already in place, the area has relatively few through routes and there has already been some community awareness making it a good place to start.
BH asked if there was a difference between LTNs and Plymouth’s Quiet Neighbourhoods Connected Communities. JC said the name often comes from local consultation giving local people ownership of schemes. The principles are the same.
BH asked if there had been any research into effects on through traffic and whether the volumes increased. JC – there may be an initial increase followed by ‘traffic evaporation’ where traffic seems to disappear, perhaps as people choose to just leave their car at home more often.
JA asked about impacts on house prices. JC referred to an area in Bristol where proposals were not progressed after ‘anti’ sentiment based on concerns about gentrification were whipped up. This needs to be managed. People will enjoy better living conditions so for Plymouth the next step is to work on urban design and visualisations of what the neighbourhood will look like. It’s also necessary to prove with data what the impact on congestion, air quality etc is.
SM asked if there is resistance from local people, politicians and whether a retail based environment (like Southside Street) would benefit from a similar approach. JC – where traffic levels drop, footfall increases. Cafes spill out into the street and people linger longer. There’s lots of evidence to show businesses benefit. We need to share that evidence in a simple way to make the case.
SJ referred to a report today saying pollution levels were greater now than pre-lockdown especially driven by more delivery vans and asked if these plans take account of the changes in people’s lives and the need for access to their homes. JC – agreed that online deliveries are not going to stop and LTNs must allow them to happen. The hope is that other vehicles will not get in the way of deliveries and there will be other solutions – eg creating delivery hubs a short walk away within the LTN and people collect from there. JG pointed out that LTNs favour the use of cargo bikes for deliveries. Seeing them more often will increase interest and more companies will adopt them.
MK asked about the scale and timescale of the changes made in Waltham Forest. JC thought the work had taken around 3 years from initial planning through various stages and the project covered the whole borough. Plymouth is running a smaller pilot and is hoping to get central gov’t funding available for ‘mini-Holland’ schemes.
JA asked how LTNs fit with home zones. JC – home zones don’t stop through traffic but introduce the idea of shared space to encourage slower traffic speeds.
JS asked about boroughs around Waltham Forest and whether the idea of LTNs was likely to spread. JC – Sustrans has been involved in redesigning 12 neighbourhoods through London where other councils had seen what had been done in Waltham Forest and wanted to do the same. Three of those schemes have been taken out but overall the number of schemes removed has been quite low although they have attracted headlines. Oxfordshire County Council has closed a rural lane to traffic so it’s not just an urban solution. JG said there has been consideration of closing Blunts Lane to traffic which would create a good route to Derriford.
SB asked about people who work in the Stonehouse area and needed to park at the end of their commute. JC said fewer short journeys by car should mean a reduction in overall traffic levels and make commuting easier for those who live further away.
JA thanked JC for an informative presentation and for answering questions.
More about Low Traffic Neighbourhoods from Sustrans.
- Overview of current and planned cycling developments
- A386 Roborough to Yelverton route: PCC are now involved with WDBC and SHDC on investigating feasibility
- Looe-Plymouth cycle route – now moving forward
- Southway-Plymbridge – western half of the route from Southway to the George junction is under construction. Phase 2 (eastern half) is under planning with a consultation on a 30mph limit on the road to Wrigleys roundabout. Some limitations imposed by trying to maintain trees and green space.
- Consultation on Lee Mill slip road. The route alongside the A38 is a key commuter route and much of it is traffic free but would like to see all of it traffic free. Discussions are ongoing. PL21 group would like to see a parallel crossing of Beech Rd in Lee Mill to give priority to walking and cycling. Consultation ends on Dec 18th.
- Manadon Interchange consultation runs until Jan 4th. The roundabout and slip roads are busy and congested. The cycle route at present is indirect and not suitable for commuting cyclists. This is the beginning of a big project which will take time but need to get comments in at this stage. Here is a link to an overview of the project and one to the consultation itself which closes on January 4th Please take a look and comment constructively – don’t just wait and hope we get something better.
- Communications with members – SM and CH are working on updating our comms. CH has taken on Twitter, CH and SM are working together on Facebook. A key task is to make clear which voices do and don’t represent PCyC. The website has been cleaned up with clutter removed and CH is continuing to work on that in order to build a better relationship with members.
- PCC / PCyC Strategic Liaison Group – meetings have been set up at 3 monthly intervals. This gives us a direct route to communicate with senior staff from PCC and the opportunity to put our views. We are working collaboratively where we agree. It will take some time to build an effective relationship. Minutes of the latest meeting were shared in a much more timely way and it’s been suggested that we deal directly with project managers on particular schemes.
- Transforming Cities Fund (TCF) and Active Travel Fund (ATF) – details of these schemes are on the PCC website https://www.plymouth.gov.uk/parkingandtravel/transportplansandprojects/transportplans/transformingcitiesfund
TCF tranche 1 is for £7.6m invested in relatively small schemes and TCF tranche 2 is for £51.2m. Originally a significant proportion of this funding had been allocated to a cycle bridge linking the station and city centre to Central park but this was later reallocated to a range of smaller projects including a route connecting St Budeaux and the dockyard to the city centre, more cargo bikes and e-bikes.
ATF https://www.plymouth.gov.uk/walkingcyclingandpublictransport/cycling/cycleroutes/cyclerouteimprovements/plymouth%E2%80%99scoronaviruscovid19emergencyactivetravelfundprogramme – tranche 1 was for £249 000 which paid for work to provide more secure cycle lockers, a segregated cycle route through Armada Way and removal of barriers on cycle routes. Tranche 2 schemes will be made public shortly – see https://www.plymouth.gov.uk/activetravelfund
SM reported that there had been lots of comments on these schemes on Facebook, mostly negative. JA pointed out that a previous consultation had suggested shared space solution was the best way forward in Armada Way. BH stated the need to get something positive to come from this as it does show that cyclists are entitled to be there. JC pointed out that no shared use schemes will be built with DfT money as they do not fit the LTN 1/20 “space to move” criteria. JG said that refurbishment of Armada Way is part of the TCF plan and experience with the temporary measures will help to inform those permanent plans. Feedback on what works, what doesn’t work and what would be better is part of that. ACTION – SM to make further post on Facebook seeking feedback and encouraging positive feedback too about what does work. MK pointed out it wasn’t just the Armada Way scheme – other things have been done as part of ATF as well.
- JA commended PCC for improvements to the cycling links on their website. He has sent some further suggestions to PCC. See https://www.plymouth.gov.uk/parkingandtravel/plymotion/walkingcyclingandpublictransport/cycling
- PCC have an event planned for Dec 14th to unveil new cargo bikes. There was a competition to decide the allocation of bikes. All 35 have been allocated.
- LL asked about any progress on the Embankment route. PCC is aware of our views and some proposals are being considered currently linked in with flood protection scheme for the southern end. JG confirmed improvements were included in the TCF 2 bid but were not funded. There are a range of possibilities and various plans are in place (though not publicly available) to match various funding amounts.
Date of next meeting – Thursday 4th March 2021 6 – 7.30 pm:
Zoom link to be sent to all those on our email list a few days in advance – see below
The link to the Zoom meeting will be sent out to those subscribed to our email list a few days before the meeting. If you are not yet subscribed please sign up to our email list now (you can do this for free) to ensure you are sent the link. We will send the meeting link to the email address you provide when you join.
If you’d like to become a paid member of Plymouth Cycling Campaign with full voting rights, please visit our Join Us page for further information. The cost is £5 (annually by Standing Order). We’ll then add you to our mailing list so you hear about our meetings and other actions.
There’s never been a better time to campaign for cycling in Plymouth!