Byline: Ross Lydall
CYCLISTS will be able to ride the wrong way down a one-way street in a trial designed to encourage more Londoners to switch to two wheels.
A pilot project is being launched in Kensington and Chelsea that will permit cyclists to ignore "No entry" signs. A small plaque will be attached to the signposts saying "Except cycles".
The Department for Transport intends to extend the policy to the rest of the country, allowing thousands of one-way streets to become two-way for bikes, if the trial is successful.
It believes that preventing cyclists taking the most direct route to their destination is a deterrent to cycling in London. Often the restrictions force cyclists on to one-way systems or busy main roads, when quieter side roads are safer.
Transport minister Sadiq Khan said: "The pilot contraflow cycling system will help to reduce journey times for cyclists while allowing them to travel safely and legally on the most convenient routes. If this pilot is successful then councils across the country could be offered the opportunity to use similar measures on their roads."
Chris Peck, of the Cyclists' Touring Club, said: "We've been campaigning to allow two-way cycling on one-way streets for years and we are delighted that the Government is permitting a sign that is easy to understand. It is a safe and sensible option that is stand-arin all other European countries."
Hackney council pioneered the introduction of contraflow lanes and
now has the highest rate of cycling in the capital. …