Glasgow's latest stretch of safe, segregated cycle infrastructure along London Road to the Emirates Arena has been endorsed by Scottish track cycling star, Jack Carlin.
The new section of the East City Way creates a safer cycling connection between the city centre and the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome at the Emirates Arena, where Jack will be competing for Great Britain during the Glasgow 2023 UCI World Championships in August.
A double silver medallist at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Jack joined Councillor Angus Millar, City Convener for Transport, on the East City Way and other cyclists to mark the completion of the 'with flow' cycle lanes on London Road between Fielden Street and Canmore Street. The lanes connect with existing infrastructure between London Road and Glasgow Green, which will allow easy access from the city's East End to other safer routes in Glasgow's emerging City Network for active travel.
Started in January this year, the new section provides a total of 2 miles of safer cycling in both directions along London Road. It will ensure spectators for all 2023 UCI Championship events at the Emirates Arena have an active travel option to get to the venue.
Jack, who regularly trains at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, believes the safer lanes can make a huge difference for people thinking about getting on a bike to get about Glasgow.
He said: "With Glasgow hosting COP26 in 2021 and now the UCI Cycling World Championships, there is a real focus on the importance of active travel and the role that cycling can play in addressing climate change, as well as improving health and physical activity, which is fantastic.
"It's brilliant that people coming along to the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome at the Emirates to watch the Track World Championships, or to work on the event, will now be able to safely cycle here and to connect on to other World Champs venues and I hope people take full advantage of it. It also creates a real legacy for all the users of the Emirates Arena, not to mention the hundreds of cyclists in the local community using bikes to make their everyday journeys.
"Feeling safe on the roads is key to giving people the confidence to go out on their bikes and these new cycle lanes have incorporated some great safety features that will help address this."
Councillor Angus Millar believes Glasgow City Council's £2.5m of investment in the route will have a lasting impact on cycling in Glasgow.
He said: "The UCI Championships will be a great show case for cycling in Glasgow and it's safer, protected routes like East City Way that will encourage and inspire people to see cycling as real choice for getting about the city.
"One of the biggest barriers to people getting on a bike is perceived safety, but it is also the case that the number of people cycling in Glasgow is growing year on year. What we see is that if we built it, they will come and use the active travel infrastructure we are putting in place.
"Fantastic infrastructure like we have with East City Way can also become the exemplar for our City Network for active travel that we are planning to have all over Glasgow by 2030. By having safer, segregated infrastructure throughout the city, we can make active travel a realistic choice for everyday journeys and help create a more sustainable transport network in Glasgow."
As part of the construction of the new cycle lanes, five junctions along the route have been upgraded with sensors that ensure cyclists receive priority during traffic light phases. The junction at London Road and Clyde Gateway is believed to be the largest protected junction in Scotland. A protected junction means cyclists can manoeuvre through a junction while remaining in a segregated lane or assisted by traffic light phasing at all times.
800 square metres of plants have also been included in the design of the new section to assist with traffic calming along the route, which is a major part of plans for a City Network for active travel that aims to add 270km of cycling infrastructure to over 300 km of existing safer routes in Glasgow. East End routes such as The North East Active Travel Route and Duke Street Avenues Plus which will add to the City Network, are currently under development.
Glasgow is the first UK city to be awarded a UCI Bike City label, which supports and rewards cities and regions which host major UCI cycling events, but also invest in developing community cycling and related infrastructure and programmes. Glasgow received the UCI Bike City Label in 2019 in recognition of its plans and actions to truly embed cycling into the lives of the city's populations.