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CCNB, particularly since the change lighter and warmer! days, has continued to see an increase in residents cycling to the railway station and town centre which bodes well for a good summer of cycling.
Saturday 22 April 2017 is Earth Day which aims to encourage people across the world to be more environmentally friendly. Get your colleagues and friends to do their bit for Planet Earth by asking them to cycle to the town or shops on that day to help reduce the area's severe congestion and pollution.
Once tried they will not want to stop doing it everyday.
CCNB has published a seventh edition of its popular Bedford and Kempston Cycle Map. It is available (free of charge) from all libraries, cycle shops, museums and numerous other outlets. The map has been published since 2001 with the needs of all cyclists in mind, but particularly those who feel more vulnerable on busy roads, that is, for new or less confident cyclists and children. The map enables all cyclists to be able to ride from any location to another in the urban area using mainly off-road tracks/paths and quiet roads and protected/signalled crossings of the main roads.
More information on the map can be seen on Cycle Bedford's website here.
The New Year has seen not only a rise in Bedford town centre parking charges but also an increase in rail fares for commuters and motoring costs from increasing petrol/diesel prices.
Please encourage your non-cycling friends to save money by occasionally leaving the car in the drive and cycling (or walking) that short distance. The fitness achieved can then give further savings by the cancellation of the monthly gym subscription.
Do not let that pothole get any bigger than necessary.
If you see one on your travels please report it to the Bedford Unitary Authority Helpdesk - If they no not know about it, it will not be filled in. Large one are normally repaired by the Pothole Squad within 2 working days and smaller ones within 6 weeks from the date of reply.
Traffic congestion in Bedford has continued to be one of the major stories of the past year. Let’s try and reduce it during 2017 by cycling or cycling more often to make the town and particularly the town centre, a more pleasant and environmentally friendly place to visit. Every resident who cycles means one less vehicle on Bedford’s roads causing congestion and pollution.
The past year saw a continued increase in Bedford Borough residents cycling, particularly commuters cycling to the railway station where October gave the highest number ever.
Over the last few years there has been a number of 20mph schemes introduced in the borough improving the safety of not just cyclists but all vulnerable residents – children, the elderly and disabled. We would like to see this progressively extended to all residential and shopping areas including the whole of the town centre.
2016 also saw a number of developer funded extensions/upgrades to the urban cycle network:
• Junction improvements for both motorists and cyclists put in place at Harrowden Crossroads (March)
• Great Ouse Way (A4280/A6) link road opened with a cycle track alongside the whole length of the south side from the Clapham Road roundabout (near Sainsbury’s) to Bromham Road (Gold Lane roundabout) (April)
• New cycle stands installed at Bedford South Wing Hospital (April)
• Improvements for cyclists put in place at the end of Tavistock Street following reconstruction of the carriageway to improve drainage (May)
• New two-tier cycle racks installed at Bedford railway station to give 612 spaces (including 24 spaces in the borough's Ashburnham Road car park) available for commuters (May)
• The new cycle/pedestrian bridge across the River Great Ouse between St Mary's Gardens and the new Riverside North development arrived and was lifted into position (June)
• Bromham Road cycle track near Biddenham Turn, closed for a number of months to allow a new junction to be created for the start of the north of Bromham Road development, reopened with wider track and two new toucan crossings (July)
• Cycle stands installed at the Pavilion Cafe in Bedford Park and in the front of De Parys Hotel in De Parys Avenue (August)
• Upgraded off-road cycle track completed as part of Travis Perkins development along the old section of Cambridge Road bwtween Wallis Way and Cardington Road. This gives a direct route from the south of the town and Kempston to Priory Business Park (August)
• Final 50 metre section of cycle track constructed between Great Denham development and riverside to give a complete off-road route to the town from Great Denham, Kempston West and Marsh Leys (December)
During 2017 we look forward to the opening of the new river bridge to the Riverfield North site, a signal controlled cycle route around the A421/A6 junction by Highways England and at least the plans for the upgrade to the Bromham Road railway bridge by Network Rail showing a wide cycle track across the bridge and an underpass from Spencer Road.