Looking back at exactly what was said about Cycle Superhighways when they were first proposed, and how the message and emphasis has changed between then and now…The press release:
The Mayor said: ???I'm not kidding when I say that I'm militant about cycling, and these Superhighways are central to the cycling revolution I'm determined to bring about. No longer will pedal power have to dance and dodge around petrol power – on these routes the bicycle will dominate and that will be clear to all others using them. That should transform the experience of cycling – boosting safety and confidence of everyone using the routes and reinforcing my view that the bike is the best way to travel in this wonderful city of ours."????
The Mayor continued: ???I'm delighted that, as part of our summer of cycling, I can now unveil plans for the first two pilot routes, which are moving apace in close consultation with the relevant boroughs. There is real excitement about cycling building in the city, and the Cycle Superhighways show we are serious about delivering real positive changes that will benefit us all."??
Kulveer Ranger, said: "Cycle Superhighways form a key part of the Mayor and TfL???s target to increase cycling in London by 400 per cent by 2025, compared to 2000 levels. From cycling the proposed routes myself, and speaking to a whole range of cyclists, I'm sure that these routes will prove a hugely welcome addition to London's cycling infrastructure – giving many more people the confidence to ride".
Am I alone in thinking that the semantics are all wrong? As well as being a long-time London cyclist, Mayor Johnson is a talented wordsmith and I would expect better. I prefer Bicycle Boulevard to Cycle Superhighway. I love to ride a bicycle but am no ???militant??? nor do I take to the roads seeking to ???dominate??? anyone. I???m all too aware of the inherent vulnerability of riding a bicycle yet also of the civilising effect of cycling on street life. When I ride it???s with thoughts of sharing and negotiating space, rolling with ease, elegance, kindness and an awareness that there are a lot of other people around, each on his or her own journey, by whatever means.