The Government Shouldn't Be Making Private Car Use Easier, Needs to Big up Bikes, Says Commissioners

By Shabana Arif on at

Cycling and walking commissioners are demanding that the government stop focusing so much on cars when it comes to transport planning, and invest in alternatives that “account for the true cost of car use to society”.

Spending money on cycle lanes is apparently just a costly "gesture" that make cyclists feel less safe on their bikes, as opposed to meandering all over the road with no allocated space, which fills them with a sense of safety one can only imagine.

"As there are currently no national minimum safety standards for walking and cycling infrastructure, these practices can and will continue wasting public money and failing to persuade people to change their travel habits,” reads the letter to the transport secretary from commissioners.

The letter critiques decisions to fund transport initiatives that make "private car use easier" or that don't take into account the "negative consequences" of this, or the "benefits of walking and cycling on our health, wellbeing and environment."

So if you're one of the millions of people who already own a car, you can get stuffed and make do with what you've got, because of the “systemic undervaluation and underinvestment in sustainable transport."

The commission has highlighted that cuts to road policing budgets has increased danger on roads and leaves less in the coffers to reinvest. It's pushing for an enforcement of offence violations to get the money flowing again.

"Where towns and cities are investing in high-quality walking and cycling infrastructure the benefits are clear – helping tackle our inactivity crisis, helping clean up our toxic air, and making our streets more welcoming places to spend time," said London's commissioner, Will Norman. "But for people truly to reap the benefits across the UK, government policy must not continue to hold us back.” [The Guardian]