infrastructure

The Greener Way

Bournbrook Walkway

I recently got hold of a copy of Push Bikes member Roy Watson's new Birmingham Greenways map. Whilst looking at it I noticed there is a way of eliminating a tedious on-road section of a ride I make from time to time through the Netherton tunnel. Additionally, it makes it circular without going via my house, so it could be used by other people. So one beautiful sunny afternoon I set off with Roy's map in the spring clip of my pannier rack.

Please Keep Left, People!

Shared use sign

There is a noticeable increase in the number of people cycling in Birmingham, and of course most of them opt for routes that don't involve mixing with motor vehicles. The canals make for a pleasant environment, and the resurfacing of the tow paths carried out using Cycling Ambition Grant money is an improvement over the previous mud bath, but the tow paths are too narrow for use as heavily used shared-use paths.

Designing and Planning for Cycling Training Workshop

Designing and Planning For Cycling training workshop

John Bennett and I attended this workshop run by MADE on behalf of Push Bikes. There were approx twenty other delegates – three from Birmingham City Council, one from Centro, eight from Bristol City Council, a few from other local councils, together with a couple of students. At the introductions it was disappointing that several were not regular commuting cyclists and most had only passing involvement with cycling infrastructure design.

Old Rail Bridge at Northbrook Street

Northbrook St rail tunnel works

At the end of the Harborne Walkway there is an old railway bridge under Northbrook Street which linked up to a rail bridge over the canal to take the trains to New Street Station. This railway bridge has been bricked up and buried for many years, but recently AMEY have uncovered the buried end to undertake strengthening works on the brickwork. Coincidentally, the Birmingham Cycle Revolution local connections scheme is widening a pathway next to this location to improve the connection between Summerfield Park and the canal access steps at Northbrook Street.

Motorcycle Barriers on Canals

Motorcycle barriers on canal towpaths and on off-road cycle routes around Birmingham are an issue that causes frustration for Push Bikes members and campaigners. They cause a lot of inconvenience to people riding common cycles, and are often impassable to people riding tricycles or recumbents, or towing a trailer. At the bi-annual Canal and River Trust (CRT) West Midlands Users group meeting, on 21st April 2015, we heard from Ian Darby who works for CRT and is running a Motorcycle Barrier Project.

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