Brighton & Hove City Council has won the Best Cycle Network Infrastructure Award for the Lewes Road sustainable transport scheme. The announcement was made at the Cycle Planning Awards at Walthamstow Assembly Hall on Monday evening. More than 100 entries were submitted in eight categories and were judged by a panel of respected figures from the world of cycling.
The Lewes Road scheme involved the reallocation of road space along the busy 3 mile dual-carriageway, from Falmer to the city centre, providing improved cycle lanes and a priority lane for buses. 14 ‘floating’ bus stops were installed to reduce conflict between buses and cyclists which had previously put many off cycling the route and made it challenging for bus drivers to pull in at stops.
The Lewes Road (A270) is a key route linking the city centre to major destinations including four university sites, the Amex Community Stadium, Stammer Park and a host of residential neighbourhoods like Coldean, Moulsecoomb, Bevendean and Bates Estate. Since the scheme’s completion, journeys by bus and by bike have significantly increased. The scheme was funded by the Department for Transport’s Sustainable Transport Fund and was delivered under the city’s 2011-15 Green administration.
Councillor Pete West, Green spokesperson on transport, said: “This is now the fifth award or commendation that we have received, citing the Lewes Road improvement scheme. I’m delighted and incredibly proud that this innovative scheme is recognised by so many transport experts as an example of excellence in design and delivery. It really has made cycling between the city centre and neighbourhoods along this route so much safer and more enjoyable, opening up this option for thousands more people. Hats off to our council’s amazing Transport team, and to the project manager Robin Reed and former Green councillor Ian Davey, who had the vision, expertise and commitment to see this challenging project through.”
Moulsecoomb resident, Heike Feldpausch, said: “I regularly cycle along the Lewes Road with my 4-year old son. It used to be a bit of a nightmare with a narrow cycle lane and two lanes of fast-moving traffic just inches away. Now it is a joy to ride, it feels safe and civilised and I can look forward to my boy cycling along it too when he is a little bit older”
Within the last twelve months the Lewes Road scheme has been linked to four other awards and commendations: the CIVITAS European City of the Year for Sustainable Transport(2014), the Smarter Travel Award for Most Improved Journey to Work (2014), the Local Authority Bus Project of the Year (2014) and the National Transport Awards (2014).