Do you Cycle on the Portway?

Here it's too easy to use the shared path as lorry parking

There’s a major Consultation on this stunning gorge and key transport corridor. If you can do just one thing to improve cycling in Bristol today please complete the Survey, and answer, or just paste “Needs a continuous cycle route segregated from motor traffic, including buses, and walkers” into the “Other Comments or Suggestions” boxes at the end of each of the 4 Sections into which the route is split; that is in answer to Questions 13,16,19 and 22.

Currently the A4 Portway is an urban dual carriageway with cars and lorries speeding between Central Bristol and the M5 motorway. It goes through suburbs (Avonmouth, Shirehampton Sea Mills, Stoke Bishop & Hotwells), past majestic cliffs, with views of precious woodland and under Brunel’s iconic Suspension Bridge. We’d like to see it made safe for cycling and walking and the cars tamed. Secretly some of us might like the through traffic removed but we are aware that’s not realistic. You can cycle along parts of the pavement, where its’ wide and, if nobody else is walking or cycling, it can work ok. At other points, however, the shared pavement is too narrow for two bikes, or a bike and a walker to pass safely. In any event, the cycle route gives up in Shirehampton, and virtually none of it complies with current design guidance (LTN 1/20 for our geekier members!). It’s a very wide road and there is plenty of room to accommodate segregated cycle lanes with minimal effects on motor traffic.

The Consultation also includes most of the route through Hotwells to the Harbourside, which is probably used by everyone in Bristol. We’ll submit a full response seeking, amongst other things; more crossings, reduction in motor lanes, lower speed limits and, of course, a continuous separated cycle route. The Survey, as ever, is not particularly helpful. But if you can find 5 minutes to just click through, you don’t need to answer every question, and paste in answer to questions 13,16,19 and 22; “Needs a continuous cycle route segregated from motor traffic, including buses, and walkers” you’ll be helping us to help you to ride around Bristol safely and make our city a nicer place.