TFL’s proposed route for Cycle Superhighway 9 (CS9) route is between Kensington Olympia, linking Hammersmith and Chiswick town centers. The health and environmental benefits of improving cycle infrastructure are well known, the potential economic benefits less so.
TfL are proposing to invest £15-£20m for CS9 in Hammersmith. In addition to this direct investment, shops/retail spaces will benefit longer term from the increased footfall generated as a direct result of improved infrastructure. These economic benefits have been measured in many international studies. In the US when a protected bike lane was built on 9th Avenue in New York, local retailers experienced a 49 percent increase in sales compared to other streets in Manhattan.
CS9 is supported by 2 of the largest employers in West London, Sky, GSK, and a number of others which include, the charity Middlesex Association for the Blind, the housing association L&Q, creative agency Now Comms. These organisations all recognise that CS9 will bring benefits to their employees and customers.
TfL’s handling of the consultation could have been better and the consultation period longer. We believe plans need significant refinements and that TfL needs to address the valid concerns raised by residents.
It is surprising given the health, environment, economic benefits and the support from local businesses the H&F Conservative party is seeking to block the TfL’s £20m investment in Hammersmith. Given the potential benefits it would be better to be working with TfL to improve the plans rather than simply reject them out of hand.