Published Thursday, 17th October 2019
Cyclists travelling towards the Minster could be allowed to use High Petergate, during footstreet hours of between 10:30am and 5pm (in the direction of the one way street), for a six month trial.
A report detailing the proposal is being taken to a public meeting decision session for the Executive Member for Transport on Wednesday 24 October for approval.
The changes would permit cycling in High Petergate in a southerly direction from Bootham Bar to Duncombe Place, a part of the ‘Way of the Roses’ long distance cycle route through York.
It’s intended that another report will be brought back for review, after six months in operation, including consultation feedback. This will help to decide if this should be made permanent.
Cllr Andy D’Agorne, Executive Member for Transport, said: “The recent completion of Scarborough Bridge has made this whole area more accessible for people travelling by bike, on foot or using mobility aids between the railway station and the city centre.
“The opening of the new fully accessible bridge is already playing an important role by improving connectivity between existing cycle routes and footpaths, making it easier than ever before for people to cycle into the centre of York.
“Relaxing the current restriction, on cycling along High Petergate during this trial will help to further promote this safer alternative in York’s city centre for many journeys. It would also join up a gap in the cross-centre cycle route which otherwise avoids footstreets, from Bootham past the Minster, through Aldwark to Hungate Bridge and Walmgate.”
High Petergate is a busy street with pedestrians and deliveries to cafes and shops but is included in the footstreets. Under this scheme vehicle access (including by cyclists riding their bikes) are not legally allowed to use this route between the hours of 10.30am and 5pm daily (subject to a few special exemptions, e.g. emergency vehicles).
The road is on the Way of the Roses National cycle route and is a key link in the city’s cycle network with a high number of cyclists using the route during the permitted period. However, a recent council survey also recorded around 30 cyclists per hour riding their bikes along this route during the footstreet hours.
Taking this into consideration, and that the police accident database has no record of casualties linked to cycling during these footstreet hours since their introduction in 2000, the council is looking at relaxing the current restrictions.
If approved, it’s proposed that the council will carry out extensive consultation with interested parties during the first six months of the experiment.
This would enable people to form their views based on real experience and observations. Comments can be made throughout the experimental period.
Towards the end of the experimental period it is proposed to invite people to submit final comments to a dedicated council web address, local business and residents via a letter drop, and a wide range of road-user organisations and the emergency services via email.
The feedback would be summarised in a report to the Executive Member for a decision on whether the experiment should be made permanent.
The trial would cost approximately £5K to implement, monitor, and report back on.
The meeting takes place on Thursday 24 October at West Offices from 2pm and is open to members of the public, or is available to watch online, either live or later at: www.york.gov.uk/webcasts
To find out more about the report, or to attend, visit:https://democracy.york.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=738&MId=11570