£220,000 on cycling in Richmond? What a fine thing!

Now I’d be the last person to be complaining about spending on cycle infrastructure, but I have a couple of big questions on this one:

– Other cycle hubs are talking about including a charge to park your bike. That seems a laughably counter-productive idea which hopefully won’t make it to Richmond.

– The headline said “£220k for Richmond cycle hub”. But the ‘small print on the DfT website suggests that this £220,000 also needs to furnish a cycle hub at Sutton station, too. I’ve no idea how big Sutton is, or the relative plans for each station, but the immediate question is: “what does £220,000 buy?”

– The hub is going to include some kind of repair and valet facility. Which presumably someone needs to try to run at a profit. How does this fit with local bike shops? Will the facility have rent charged at an economic value, so that it doesn’t unfairly compete with other local businesses?

– How much cycle parking is included? The Richmond parking spaces are regularly completely full, with large volumes of parking outside the station on the available railings, suggesting that you could at least double the parking for bicycles and still not have enough provision for peak times.

– The cycle hub is going to be somehow connected to a bicycle hire scheme. Doesn’t London already have a cycle hire scheme? Why on earth is it a good idea to start operating a parallel hire scheme? (In the local paper, the council’s cycling champion says “I actually think this is better than the Boris bikes for Richmond because a lot of people already own their own bikes but this is particularly aimed at visitors to the borough …”

Anyway, you can enjoy the earlier story here and look forward to this new cycling hub in July, apparently.


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