Blog Archives

Policy for London’s Quietways

London’s ‘quietways’ are not quiet enough. TfL explain them as: ‘continuous and convenient cycle routes on less-busy backstreets across London’. They are on backstreets. But they not continuous,  because there are so many unimproved junctions. Their convenience is for local trips:

Posted in London cycle network

Costing and phasing London’s Cycleway Network

Should London’s cycling infrastructure be planned for a mode share of  9% or 41%? And when should the plan be implemented? The TfL 2018 London Cycle Action Plan is strong on intentions, vague on phasing and vague on costings. So here’s

Posted in cycleways, London cycle network, London Cycleway Plan

Green the Redways: Copenhagenize the TfL Transport for London Road Network TLRN

    TfL should Copenhagenize London’s the TLRN (Transport for London Road Network. Copenhagenization means confiscating the warships of a defeated enemy, which is what the British did in 1807. Mikael Colville-Andersen uses ‘Copenhagenize’ to mean good cycle planning. I’ve been

Posted in cycleways, London cycle network, urban design

Little Free Libraries for urban landscapes

Little Free Libraries are a great idea.  Landscape architects should include them in designs for public open spaces including parks, squares, piazzas etc. Universities should have several on every campus for textbooks as well as leisure reading. In 2010 I

Posted in landscape architecture, public parks, school grounds, urban design

Michael Brown and the landscape architecture of housing

Many thanks to Colin Moore for remembering Michael Brown’s work in a Merl blog post. Michael Brown’s office (in which Colin worked) produced the best UK housing landscape designs of the 1960s and 70s.  The outdoor space was very well

Posted in bad architecture & planning, landscape architecture, urban design, urban squares

The Yorkshire trod is a great way to make a footpath

The OED defines a trod as ‘A trodden way; a footpath, path, way. (dialect)’.   Phillips New World of Words (1678) explained Trode as ‘an old word signifying a path’. It slipped out of general use but survives in some parts

Posted in greenways, landscape architecture, urban design

Should wearing cycle helmets be compulsory? No.

No. The below diagram from Copenhagenize illustrates the balance of expert opinion. A cycle helmet will save your life in a relatively low proportion of cycle accidents. So I wear one, except when the weather is too hot. When they

Posted in cycleways, urban design

Parliament Square in Westminster should be re-designed

The public open space outside the Mother of Parliaments should be re-designed as a place for MPs to talk to constituents and demonstrators. It was filled with protesters on 15th January 2019. This was the day on which the first

Posted in landscape architecture, urban design

Death on the TfL London Cycle Network in 2018

 This draft cannibalised for a post on cycle deaths The London Cycle Network LCN  is dead but unburied London cycling commissioner Will Norman declares in the video that ‘Cycling is very safe in London.’  But there are twice as

Posted in London cycle network, London Cycleway Plan

London Cycle Action Plan TfL: a review

The Guardian is too kind when it says the London Cycle Action Plan is ‘bold but has a major flaw’. It has many major flaws. But before looking at them let’s note the document’s good points: It acknowledges that London’s

Posted in cycleways, London cycle network, urban design