This section of a CycleStreets map focuses on one lively part of Bristol. It’s where I go shopping sometimes. It also includes my favourite uphill ride in the city, a gradient that suits my 65 year old sense of fun. The best known section is called Park Street. Lots of people ride up and down Park Street despite the well-rehearsed myth that Bristol is “too hilly”.
But never mind the gradient. Look at the RTC data from CycleStreets brilliant search tool. In the map reproduced above I used a mouse to click round the blobs of shame that mark all the failures of gravity, attention span, entropy and other abstractions that ended up with someone in A&E. Towards the north west end of the marked area is a mess of ill-made streets called “The Triangle” On its hypotenuse is Queens Road.
Once the area has been drawn, click on the submit button and CycleStreets delivers a more or less instant comma separated file for inspection in your browser. Downloading is recommended – it can be opened with Excel or SPSS or whatever other gimlet you use for data mangling.This is what I did with mine in Excel:
So there you have it. Pedestrians have a rough time of it on Bristol’s liveliest streets. What do we make of it? What do A&E make of it? What could we do about it? Here are some bullet points to start an argument:
- Reducing speeds to 20 mph would be good.
- Stop casual street parking (there’s a massive empty car park very close by – make the first hour free)
- Re-balance traffic lights to favour pedestrians
- Widen footpaths
- De-clutter the footpaths
- Add more crossing places
- Persuade shops to use more “last mile” cycle deliveries
- Make a two-way cycle track up one side of Park Street where the parking used to be
- Pedestrianise the rest of Park Street
- Improve lighting at night
- Talk to taxi drivers about what they see at night and what ideas they have
- Look at the two major junctions off Park Street
- Narrow the very wide exit from Queens Avenue onto Queens Road
- Ask the Government for some proper money
It seems to me that most of these could make a difference to the casualty stats for people on foot. As a big bonus they would also make life gentler for anyone riding a bike. I looked for pedestrian casualties where a bicycle had been involved. The data run from 2005 to 2013. There was just one. It was a slight injury collision in 2012. It was at quarter to three on a Sunday morning and both parties needed treatment..