I was on my way to the Little Greek Pie Company the other day feeling the need for a delicious pie. (I frequently get this need). Time was on my hands so I thought, you know what, I don’t fancy battling it out on the busy roads, I’m going to hit the quiet back streets and I uttered those famous last words: “How hard can it be?”.
Sidenote: How horribly humid was it yesterday?!
A quick glance on Google and my plans look doable I thought. Sure, bit of exploring of back streets of London, could discover something new. I’m feeling a little crazy! I’m going to do it!
Of course, I was soon caught up in a maze of one way streets. There’s something strangely painful about going the wrong way and having to double back on yourself. Other cyclists may be able to confirm this feeling? I believe it’s because you are doing it on your own steam so you don’t want to waste the effort you just put in.
I spotted a turn that would put me much closer to where I wanted to be. But it was a one way. Should I take it?
It was a bit cheeky but I went for it.
At the next junction I needed to turn again. Of course, yet another one way sign stood in my way.
I was on the slippery path so I went for it again.
The pie was in sight and I had accomplished my mission. Albeit, by bending some rules.
I’m wondering who here would have done the same thing or should I be deeply ashamed of my little bit of rule breaking?
London’s one way systems
The map at the start of this post is from the Cyclists in the City blog. It shows the streets that are being considered to be made two ways for cyclists as well as the ones that have already been made two way.
The initial trial of two way systems was greeted with anger from organisation such as the AA. They called it dangerous and illegal.
Of course, as is often the case, there wasn’t a single collision reported during the trial period.
The City, with the clear support of City Police, concluded: "The cycle permeability improvements implemented in December 2009 have been well received with cyclists. They provide alternatives to some of the busy City Streets and make it easier and safer to navigate the City by cycle without prejudicing safety and convenience for other road users."
More two way systems are on the way and I believe this is one of easiest steps we can take to make London more cycle friendly.