Shared use cycle way being built on Chapel Hill
It would appear that the county is encouraging people to cycle on the pavement including under the bridge at Chapel Hill. It will not make cycling any safer and will also endanger pedestrians as cycles descending the hill will be going many times faster than people walking. The pinchpoint under the bridge is unchanged - scary.
"On 15 March 2019 road changes had made cycling up Chapel Hill very unpleasant as the carriageway had been severely narrowed and traffic had to crawl behind me cycling uphill." said Heather. If the footway has been widened for shared use this is not helpful as the footway under the bridge is far too narrow for cycling and you cannot get on to the footway because of the kerb.
It is not safe to have a two way cycle shared use footway on a hill.
Cycles going uphill are unstable and going downhill brakes would have to be applied continuously, difference in cycling:walking speeds are at least 5:1 and as much as 10:1.
A better solution would have been an uphill withflow segregated cycle lane on the carriageway with armadillos or flexi posts and a downhill cycle lane by removing the footway on the other side and providing a pedestrian crossing (hump with altered surface) from the old cemetery gateway to the footway.
A shared use footway on Chapel Hill will also mean unnecessary crossings of the arms of the roundabout with Sherborne road and John Liddell road. The roundabout here is not cycle friendly as very high entry/exit speeds have been designed and crossing of arms are particularly wide.
The area between the Anvil roundabout and the railway bridge is complex and busy with pedestrians, creating shared use for pedestrian and cycle mode is not helpful to people either wanting to walk or trying to cycle.
The cycle/footway width is substandard, a minimum of 3m for two way cycling + 1.8m for walking + .5 m for protection from the kerb hazard = 5.3metres total.
Cycle Basingstoke has spoken to local councillors, but they are at a loss as to what to do at this late stage. The solution would seem to be design standards used by the Highways Authority. Heather from Cycle Basingstoke and councillors will be meeting with councillor Humby.