Edinburgh - where a "Quality Bike Corridor" features no bike lane, but does feature a car park!
The council are oh-so-pleased with their new "Quality Bike Corridor" (QBiC), which on paper leads a cyclist safely from the centre of Edinburgh through the Southside of the city all the way to the University campus at King's Buildings. A route already busy with cyclists, but with little more than the odd bit of paint here and there by way of infrastructure.
I've not yet ridden the length of the QBiC, but have heard and seen online how, well, rubbish it is. So I had reason to be on it this afternoon.
My thoughts? Well, I actually couldn't find it. There were some bits of paint and red(ish) tarmac on the road, but more of the route was either parking bays, or Edinburgh's infamous painted-cycle lanes with single yellow lines - meaning they are a car park! And the bits that do (or should) have double yellow lines? Well people are parking on them too.
I had great hopes for this route, but it's really dreadful. It feels like the cycling budget has been used to simply resurface some bits of the carriageway (which should come out the roads budget, it's not bicycles that tear up the roads in the first place!) 's yet more money poured away by people who don't ride bikes and don't know what cyclists want or need - and ultimately it makes the environment no more safe. Personally I think it's less safe as there's a presumption amongst cyclists that because there's some paint on the road that motorists have an obligation to treat them better, and there's an assumption amongst motorists that because there's some paint on the road that cyclists must be forced into the gutter and must not be in "their" space, i.e. primary.
Edinburgh council subscribes to the quantum theory school of bike lanes - the council genuinely believes they can paint a "cycle lane" and then also paint car parking spaces on the same piece of road and that it can be both things at once. Truly ridiculous - it just needs one car along the whole length to force you into having to pull out into a stream of traffic coming from behind - never a favourite manoeuvre for any cyclist.
Anyone in the council who is either involved with, has supported or has used this waste of paint and tarmac as an excuse to try buy a few "green points" should be forced to ride this embarrassment and over until they accept it's useless. They should then be sent back to the city chambers and be locked in until they can come up with the goods for something that truly could be called a "quality bicycle corridor".