Why build a cycle lane if you are going to block it (for no reason) every time you do any road works?
Junction of Sidney St and Furnival St, Sheffield, August 2010
Normally this cyclist would go to the end of the red cycle lane which deliberately positions her so she can safely cross Furnival St into Brown Street ahead on the right. Somebody has put that red and white barrier across her path so she now has to cycle off a high kerb in a location that the planners presumably thought not safe, or she has to go up to the left for a distance and make a U turn at the end of the barrier. stillpointlink
This is one of the busiest cycle routes in Sheffield, part of the city’s “Cycle Ring Route” and used by anybody coming from the west to Sheffield Station. Maybe that barrier isn’t such a big obstacle in the scheme of things but it’s completely unnecessary and an example of how the city’s road maintenance people just don’t give a damn about cyclists, are probably incapable of understanding what that little section of cycle lane is for, so they do pointless thoughtless things that make our lives more difficult and make us feel even more like second class citizens.
Here’s what the barrier does:
It prevents traffic from Brown Street, beyond the bus, turning up towards the camera because the road is blocked by road works further up the street behind the camera. It would be dead easy to build the barrier with a gap for cyclists to follow their normal route on to Brown Street but nobody cares enough. If motorists encountered a silly obstacle like this there would be uproar but it wouldn’t happen because planners and highway repair people are able to think about motorists needs.
I ride off that high kerb, despite having fragile property (computer and camera) in my bike bag, however some people have started taking a dangerous route through the junction, avoiding the cycle lane and cycling the wrong way up the one-way Sidney Street. At the narrow section where it meets this junction is a dangerous point where a motor vehicle, like this bus, can appear and make a right turn, meeting the cyclist in a road too narrow for both.
I’m not surprised, Sheffield is clueless about cycling. Motorists come first and we have to make do with fragmented, sometimes dangerous, cycling provision that can be blocked for months or years if the planners get bored with it and want to do something else.