The chart below was published by the Hounslow Cycling Campaign on Twitter apparently based on new numbers released by TfL.
While you can't say for certain if the overall level of cycling is down since C9 was introduced what is very clear is that there has been a sharp drop in cycling during the morning and evening peaks. Cycling has risen during the middle of the day.
I looked but couldn't find these numbers so they may not be in the public domain. Not sure why April 2018 has been compared to Mar-Aug 2021.
Andrew OSullivan ● 36d71 Comments
For starters, Philippa, what is the comparative size of Paris compared to London? I'll save you looking it up. Paris covers an estimated 105 square kilometers, which means London is 15 times larger than Paris. Paris is not much bigger than London's central business district,
Claire Moran ● 28d
I’m talking about seeing them, not taking photos. My photos tend to be of empty cycle lanes.
Maggie Dodge ● 28d
Who would want to cycle as you risk having your photo taken and posted wherever, I wouldn't like that and especially the photos of children isnot good.
Janice Evans ● 28d
I spend around 75mins walking in and out of shops on the high street today,3 cyclists seen in that time.
Keith Iddon ● 29d
Meanwhile Paris moves on towards its 2026 100% cyclable city and the lady Mayor cycles to work:https://www.forbes.com/sites/carltonreid/2021/10/22/paris-to-become-100-cycling-city-within-four-years-reveals-new-plan/?sh=164f4a196984
Philippa Bond ● 29d
When I was commuting - Bedford Park to Canary Wharf - all I cared about was how quickly I could get there.Like you I preferred routes with fewer junctions which led me to use the main roads.With this mindset cycle infrastructure is basically irrelevant. You choose the route that gets you to work as quickly as possible. After a few years you become completely hardened to the other traffic.The people who do not already cycle and those tentatively making their first steps have a different set of priorities for their cycling journeys. TfL get the most bang for their buck by satisfying them - more cycling, fewer car journeys. Their priority is not speed but safety. Their journeys are not 10+ miles to Docklands but half a mile to the cafe or shops.
Will Watson ● 29d
Just drove from Hammersmith to Chiswick along Kings Street and Chiswick highroad. Past two cyclists along the whole of the route well the cars were telling back waiting for buses which can no longer use the inside lane
Sean Wales ● 29d
You're right that we are seeing large shifts in how people travel simply due to the pandemic and disentangling the cause of changes at this point is certainly not straightforward. Even if we had no pandemic, the response to changes will not necessarily be immediate. So I agree, the effect of any changes cannot be fully assessed in less than a year, and that's in "normal" times.The deployment and complete removal of the cycle lane along Kensington High Street after just a few weeks was at best a massive waste of money. However, it makes sense to modify a scheme if a clear issue emerges, especially within the constraints of a rapid deployment, and ongoing monitoring is necessary.C9 is already being extended to the boundaries of Kensington and Chelsea - the lanes are now in between the gyratory and Olympia with work on Kings Street, and most importantly around the gyratory, scheduled to be completed by this spring.
Tom Pike ● 30d
Tom, going back to the point I made earlier. Is there anything to suggest that the modal shit was caused by infrastructure changes rather than the pandemic? I think it would make no sense to remove the measures implemented and waste the money spent until they have been in long enough to assess them properly. But also I would suggest the same would be said about doubling down and extending or modifying the schemes until that realistic assessment can be made.
Kieran Fox ● 30d
Emissions, pollution and health are key outcomes of transport policy and are completely independent of why individual choices are made not to drive or to get on a bike.A car driver might stop driving and instead take the tube, and a previous tube passenger might decide to bike in. Alternatively, a car driver might decide to bike in while the tube passenger continues to take the tube. The effect in terms of emissions and pollution is exactly the same, even if in the first case nobody has shifted their journey from car to bike. In reality the individual choices will be a mixture of shifts between transport modes, but we can see the overall effect from tracking the modal shift.To say that this is "statistical mirage" is both incorrect and misses entirely how we can best measure what we all want to achieve. Modal shift is the key parameter that quantifies how overall our transport choices are affecting emissions and pollution. You can survey individuals to see what choices they have actually made, but the outcome in terms of emissions and pollution will not be affected by what you might find out. The chart isn't wrong, but it's not comparing like with like, as Michael has already mentioned. If you compare manual counts of bikes against the same type of vehicles for the one weekday in April 2018 to the average of all the monitored weekdays in April 2021, we have seen a modal shift from 17% to 25% cycling on the High Road.
Tom Pike ● 30d
Justin, in the chart, the April 2018 numbers are from 7am to 6pm *on a single day* (18 April 2018) .The 2021 numbers are 24 hours a day for a period of 160 days from 24 March 2021 to 31 August 2021.If it would make you happy, I can easily pick a single day in 2021 showing considerably more people cycling than there were on 18 April 2018.The April 2018 counts (where were done by DfT) are the most recent ones I'm aware of from pre-pandemic with hourly numbers so still worth showing. DfT only do a single day of counting in many locations for long term trends.I thought the reduction in peak and increase in inter peak was interesting. September may also provide more interesting data to see if the peaks increase as people start going back to the office. Same goes for the figures when the extension of the route into LBHF is finished which will more than double the length of the route.
Michael Robinson ● 31d
OK so you agree with me that a "modal shift" can occur even if not a single person has abandoned their car for a bike?So exactly what is this shift that you refer to if not a single person has shifted from car to bike but the proportions changed because bike journeys fell slower than car journeys...it is nothing more than a statistical mirage.In fact you can end up with the same mirage when overall traffic numbers go up - if bike journeys rise faster than car journeys than the proportion of journeys by bike rise even if not a single person has shifted their journey from car to bike - in that case it is people who did not previously journey down the route who change the proportions.I am sorry but using proportions to claim there is a "modal shift" is just bad statistical reasoning.As for your claim that bike numbers have risen on CHR - the chart that started this thread shows the exact opposite. Are you claiming that the chart is wrong?
Justin Stephenson ● 31d
It's a good point Justin. There is no point making any assessment of the changes at the moment, there are just too many variables. So it would make no sense to remove the measures implemented and waste the money spent until they have been in long enough to assess them properly. But also I would suggest the same would be said about doubling down and extending or modifying the schemes until that realistic assessment can be made.
Kieran Fox ● 31d
I may be missing something here (which is probably likely). Over the past couple of years car use has dropped, public transport use has dropped and cycle use has increased. During this time there has been a pandemic, the introduction new LTNs and dedicated cycle routes. Is there any way to say what is causing the change in transport use other than guessing?
Kieran Fox ● 31d
I'm not just focussing on people who live near the A4 and want to get to Hammersmith as quick as possible. Anyone cycling into town (or anywhere East of Chiswick Lane) from West of Chiswick Roundabout benefits.Anyone needing to get anywhere East of Chiswick Lane is better off staying on the A4 until after Chiswick Lane and then going up to the High Road / King Street further East.I know your main focus isn't commuters, but they are very important. For most people of working age, commuting comprises a very large proportion of their journeys.Also, because of the cost savings and time savings, commuting is what is going to get people buying bikes in the first place. I started cycling again because I was commmuting, and there were large time savings. Now I make most of my local journeys by bike. I wouldn't have done that if I hadn't started out by using it for commuting. The cost saving on commuting is going to be the main incentive for a lot of people to get on bikes.A route that is much slower, and less safe, for commuters is less likely to encourage them to cycle.
Al Webber ● 31d
Al,The point you are ignoring is infrastructure should be built where people want to go. Lots of people want to visit Chiswick High Rd. Very few people want to visit the A4 because there is feck all there.At least there are office buildings on the A4 west of Chiswick Roundabout hence the case for improving the cycle lane there is far stronger than the section in Chiswick.You seem to be focussing on the needs of a very small section of the population, people who live near the A4 and who want to cycle as fast as possible to Hammersmith. Could this be because you live near the A4 and want to cycle as fast as possible to Hammersmith? Thinking the things you want apply to everyone else is not a good basis for transport planning.You are ignoring the far greater numbers who will visit Chiswick High Rd for shopping and leisure as well as a journey to work.As I've said already, there are no plans and no budget within TfL to do anything on the A4. You say "We need to make the right decision" but the decision was made years ago. The only thing that might happen on the A4 in Chiswick is improvement of the crossing at Sutton Court Rd for cyclists and pedestrians.
Michael Robinson ● 31d
There is a danger of getting into an argument about semantics rather than transport here.There has undisputedly been a change in modal share but this is primarily down to the effects of the pandemic rather than C9. Like so many traffic measures undertaken during lockdown it is very difficult to reach firm conclusions about what is going on.What modal shift is taking place is difficult to know but WFH has driven down both car use and public transport use. Not sure whether a change from a form of transport to not using any transport at all is classed as modal shift but what we don't know is, going forward will this be a temporary or permanent change. As for cycling it has held up better as a proportion of trips than other forms of transport. Quibbles about whether the numbers have risen or fallen are pointless at the moment other that we can now say with some certainty that TFL's trumpeting of a 72% increase in cycling due to C9 was misleading. That said I do thing cycling in Chiswick as opposed to cycling on Chiswick High Road has increased significantly because commuter cyclists are diverting away from C9.I don't think anyone can sensibly argue that C9 hasn't brought with it extra congestion particularly west of Acton Lane and east of Chiswick Lane so the disbenefits of its installation are clear. I'll repeat, that if the claimed benefit of C9 is that it has significantly increased cycle journeys that will fail the most cursory review which will occur when Andrew Gilligan is no longer running transport policy for the government and C9 will be ripped up. The argument in favour needs to be recalibrated to stress the increase in the number of people in Chiswick cycling and how this has been above the increases seen in other parts of London. I believe this has happened but unfortunately no figures seem to be available to prove it is the case.
Mark Evans ● 31d
You talk about thousands more people currently using the A315, but if we were to base our decisions on what people currently do, we wouldn't build any cycle facilities at all. We would give the roads over to cars. Basing our decisions on current usage isn't the right way to do it. We need to make the right decisions for the long term.From Chiswick Roundabout to Hammersmith Broadway, it's a lot quicker to use the A4 than the High Road. There are only two sets of traffic lights between those two locations for a start. On the High Road there are lots, plus lots of zebra crossings. There is a huge difference in journey times.More importantly,the A4 route is a lot safer. There are a lot less junctions. Most incidents between cyclists and vehicles happen at junctions. That's where the risk is. A route with less junctions is a lot safer.It's also safer because there are a lot less pedestrians. Pedestrians step in front of bikes all the time because they don't hear them. In around 35,000 miles of cycling in London I've had one trip to A&E - that was caused by a pedestrian.We need to make the right decision whether it is in line with current usage or not. We still need something on the High Road as well, but the main focus should be on getting a decent route on the A4.
Al Webber ● 31d
Hi John,First off, thanks for taking the time to request the data in the first place, and clarify the details. On the counts, TfL have clarified that one particular camera sensor 62 east "is not currently optimised for cycle counts", not all camera sensors. There is no reason to disregard cycle counts from other sensors including S59 east or S64 west. These together with the bike-lane sensors give total cycle counts above 2018 levels. If you disregard them, you only have a lower limit on the cycle count and so cannot say if the numbers are higher or lower than 2018.Modal shift is simply a change in the proportion of bikes as a fraction of the total traffic, irrespective of the change in total traffic. You can have a modal shift with traffic either increasing or decreasing. Given the key shift is between bikes and cars, this can be calculated from the sensor data as from 20 to 33% on the High Road. The continuous count monitoring will allow this modal shift to be tracked with changes in overall traffic numbers.
Tom Pike ● 32d
You are confusing yourself. The modal share is simply defined as the fraction of all transport that uses that mode. If that fraction changes there is a modal shift. A modal shift will not occur just because transport overall increases or decreases. We have seen a significant modal shift on the High Road from cars to bikes from 2018 to 2021, while the overall numbers have clearly fluctuated due to the pandemic.You are also mistaken in saying that the absolute number of bikes counted on the High Road has fallen - it has not. While there has been a significant drop in the number of cars between April 2018 and April 2021, the number of bikes has actually increased. The overall effect has been a modal shift in terms of bikes as a percentage of cars and bikes on the High Road from 20% to 33%. Those are the numbers that completely define a modal shift from cars to bikes. To track at an individual level who has swapped between transport modes you have to survey them. That's a much more involved process, and only covers a sample of all those using transport. However, the shift in this case will certainly be made up of a combination of people either driving less or cycling more, or driving less and cycling more. Whatever the combination, though, the modal shift is the same.
Tom Pike ● 32d
I don't normally post on this forum, but since you’ve decided to involve my name in this debate, allow me to set the record straight on a few points.
Firstly, yes I’m a member of the One Chiswick Facebook group - along with c.2,000 other people who disagree with the ill-considered schemes being inflicted upon Chiswick by Hounslow Council.
However I don’t have any other connection to the organisation, and I’m certainly not in a position to influence what information they do or do not publicise.
Secondly, as a resident of Chiswick High Road, I’m one of those most impacted on a day-to-day basis by Cycleway 9. Like many others, I’m sick of the spin, the misleading use of statistics, and the overblown claims made in support of this scheme.
I’ve therefore made several FOI requests on my own initiative to find out whether some of those claims stand up to closer scrutiny. All of these requests (and the information released in response) are in the public domain and freely accessible to anyone.
Lastly, the data that TfL supplied in response to this FOI request comes from a new digital camera monitoring system installed at several junctions along CHR. There were some inconsistencies in the data which I had asked TfL to clarify before drawing any conclusions from it.
TfL have responded today with those clarifications - you can see the full details here:
They have stated that only data from the “cycle lane” sensors should be used to count the numbers of cyclists, as the sensors monitoring the carriageway near the junction with Turnham Green Terrace are “not currently optimised for counting cyclists”.
The data from the 2 “cycle lane” sensors indicates an average of 1,795 daily cyclists per weekday on Chiswick High Road (TGT junction) between April and August 2021 - 6% fewer than were recorded in the DfT count in 2018.
If the number of cyclists has not increased, how can these figures provide evidence of "modal shift"?
John Balmond ● 32d
Yes I do know and sadly Michael is using very bad statistical methods.Let me simplify suppose the only vehicle types were cars or cycles. If you have 900 car journeys and 100 cycle journeys in a defined period that would mean 90% of journeys by car and 10% journeys by bike.If at a later date you analysed vehicle journeys for the same stretch of road and same time period and found that 15% of the journeys were by bike Michael/Tom and others would loudly proclaim there had been a modal shift in transport.But here is the problem. On the second date there were 90 bike journeys and 510 car journeys. The stats show a "modal shift" but the reality is that no one has changed from car to bike, it is that a lot less car journeys happened and a few less bike journeys.Just to be clear, it may well be the case that there has been a modal shift in transport along CHR in favour of bikes. But whether this is because fewer people are using cars or buses or there is simply less traffic overall (or any combination of those things) is not clear to me from the data chart provided at the start of this thread but what we can tell from the chart is that the absolute numbers of cycle journeys did decline - which due to Covid is hardly a surprise
Justin Stephenson ● 32d
It isn't just me who disagrees with you Al. It is TfL and Hounslow who have no plans whatsoever to do anything about the current cycling on the pavement on the A4 (other than maybe the Sutton Court Road crossing) and the thousands more people who use the A315 route rather than the A4.
Michael Robinson ● 32d
Michael, you are still missing the point about travel cards. Everybody understands that you can still use PAYG if you don't have a travel card but it does mean that there is a marginal cost to the trip. If you are on a low income or are just a bit of a tightwad like me then the cost of the round-trip fare can be meaningful particularly if you are travelling to Zone 1 or going in quite regularly.
There has been a collapse in the purchase of season tickets over the pandemic and this will have boosted commuting by bike particularly in the current economic environment.
Andrew OSullivan ● 32d
I repeatedly gave the reasons why the A4 was a better route before the CS9 route was announced. I won't go into detail, but it's not used much at the moment because there are issues with how narrow the path is, tree branches hanging down at head height, and various other things. It's still less bad than the High Road lane though.
Al Webber ● 33d
What on earth is he going on about - anyone know? “Proportion of vehicle type is the most readily available proxy for modal shift.”And he has LBH’s ear.
Russell Pearson ● 33d
It seems no one else's opinion counts for Michael. So many comments about the cycle lane being unsafe, not used much, but all ignored because it doesn't suit his agenda. His figures are always interesting too, the Tom Pike school of date collection.Why should cyclists get to be so picky about where they cycle, the A4 is fine. Aren't they already getting their own way enough and a huge amount of money spent on them too. Like spoilt children shouting , we want more. .
Maggie Dodge ● 33d
Everyone isn't like you Al. A route that has regularly 3000+ people cycling every day can hardly be called "unusable".Looking at DfT counts from 2018, Chiswick High Rd had cyclists counts of 1910 while the A4...? 328. So almost six people cycling on CHR for every one on the A4.Infrastructure should be built where most people want to cycle and that isn't the A4. If there was a place where it could be justified, it would be west of Chiswick roundabout where a number of businesses are based but there are no plans for there, so just about zero chance of anything being done in Chiswick no matter how many times you say that there should be something.
Michael Robinson ● 33d
We still need a route along the A 4 though. What we have on the High Road at the moment is so slow it's unusable. I had to drop a laptop off to get fixed at Chiswick Computers a few months back. When I dropped it off I used the route along the High Road.On the way home, and on the way to pick it up again, I went through the back streets down to the A4. It's a far better route.
Al Webber ● 33d
Proportion of vehicle type is the most readily available proxy for modal shift.TfL do conduct annual interviews where they ask people if they have changed their mode of travel but these are London-wide.The point about travel cards is if people are uncertain about the number of days they will commute into the office then they won’t buy a travel card but they can use PAYG. Anecdotal I know, but the offices I work in central London have only opened their showers in the last couple of weeks because of the difficulty having cleaning/disinfection between people using them. That was a disincentive cycling for most people except those who lived pretty close (not W4).C9 has never been just about commuting as the documentation has made clear from the very beginning. Commuting is only about 20% of shorter, cyclable trips. The original concept for C9 was to go along the A4 west of Chiswick roundabout. The then head of transport of Hounslow successfully lobbied for the route to be changed to continue along the A315 to link, not bypass, the town centres of Hounslow, Brentford and then Chiswick. A route that only considers commuting would not be good value for money.
Michael Robinson ● 33d
I suspect a lot will. I started cycling into London after the bombings in 2005, because my regular route to work was closed. I discovered that it was 20 minutes quicker than public transport from where I was living at the time, and carried on cycling.A lot of those who have started cycling during the pandemic will have made similar discoveries. Exact time savings will be dependent on the route, but the last 4 offices I have worked at have all been quicker to get to by bike than by public transport.When you add in the cost savings, and the health benefits, I expect a lot of them to stay on their bikes.
Al Webber ● 33d
Tom, you do seem to be determined to get TfL off on a technicality. While the number they gave earlier for the increase in cycling due to C9 may have been true in the narrowest sense they were bogus because they gave a deliberately misleading impression that it compared before and after for the cycleway. Big increases in cycling on Chiswick High Road because of C9 were reported uncritically by some of the media including the Evening Standard.We now know this isn't true and cycling may actually have fallen. I've been saying since before these numbers were published that it would be mistake to focus on the top line cycle journey numbers. As far as I can see the success that C9 is having is encouraging an increase uptake in cycling including mainly for leisure purposes. This may yield longer term benefits as people progress to making more regular work related journeys but it will take time.Modal shift is not the same as change in proportions of vehicle type. There is no evidence of a modal shift from bikes to cars. There will have been a modal shift from public transport to bikes because of people wishing to protect themselves from catching Covid but not enough to bring about an overall increase in bike use in the area.The point Michael is missing about travel cards is that if you own one there is no marginal financial benefit from cycling to work but if you don't you save on the pay as you go fare every time you do. Buying a travel card isn't really worth it if you are not commuting daily so hybrid working should have provided an extra boost to a modal shift from public transport to cycling.We don't know yet whether these changes are permanent but hopefully irregular cycle commuters now become daily commuters when they are back in the office full-time.
Mark Evans ● 33d
Sharp drop in cycle commuting.Wow, respect for a bit of honesty.So does that mean its back to normal.Or come December TFL will say there is a huge surge in winter cycling stats again.Fact, I cycled Thursday, from Dukes Avenue to Hammersmith, I passed 5 other cyclists up to Goldhawk Road.Fact today Saturday, I was down the High Road on me bike. Hardly any one in the cycle Lane.In fact four cyclists together on the other side of the Cycle Lane.Fact. I will cycle, with or without a cycle Lane. But I don't want my Council Tax to increase to pay for this.This cycle Lane is a waste of space.It needs to be put back to a bus lane so all commuters get home quicker, and cycle as well if you wish.I was a snotty nosed kid once and cycled all over West London once. No cycle Lane, Now a snotty nosed and a bit older, and still cycle when I can.
PATRICK MULHALL ● 34d
From another Facebook group: So the independent research by Dr Rachel Aldred found LTNs were positive and benefit all 🧐 the same Dr Rachel Aldred who was a trustee for the LCC. Also was a chair of the London Cycling Campaigns Policy Forum. Obviously again no conflict of interest here.. Nothing to see here
Maggie Dodge ● 34d
Yeah because your data stands up to scrutiny does t it TP. You’re not doing your cause any favours. Any figures you quote are immediately doubted now.
Maggie Dodge ● 34d
It’s regrettable that you choose to call evidenced claims “bogus” and label simple analysis as ‘“nonsense” rather than scrutinise the actual numbers for yourself. Such scrutiny would confirm there has been a significant modal shift from cars to bikes.
Tom Pike ● 34d
“ the cost per day of using public transport goes up if you are not using it every day.”Have you not heard of Pay As You Go?The increase cited by TfL was between February and April. Please provide evidence this is “bogus”.The mode share % clearly says this is cycles and cars. Not buses, HGVs and vans.I agree that monitoring data over the long term is needed, particularly given that the route is still under construction. The DfT survey from April 18 is only done on a single day and should be used to assess long term trends.
Michael Robinson ● 34d
I think the shift to WFH can be overstated - the latest ONS figures show it is only 7% higher than it was pre-pandemic. It may be that the kind of jobs done by people who might cycle to work are more likely to be hybrid working but even then there will still be a significant number travelling to work. Andrew makes an excellent point about travel costs which suggests hybrid working should boost cycle commuting because the cost per day of using public transport goes up if you are not using it every day.It may be that much of the change in the numbers is down to unrecognised depopulation rather than changed working patterns. London notoriously had some of the lowest vaccination rates in the UK but now is well below the average for Covid infections. That probably means lots of people have left the country due to Brexit but remained registered with a GP.What ever the cause we can all now agree that the 72% growth claims made by TfL were bogus. This new nonsense about modal shift also seems a bit desperate but even if you accept most elevated claim for proportion of bikes going down Chiswick High Road there will still be at least 50 people doing the same journey on a bus for everyone of them.Overblown claims for the success of C9 are likely to be counterproductive. When a less supportive regime is in charge at Westminster there will be more scrutiny of how well it is achieving its aims. If the objective is to deliver a significant and immediate shift to cycling it is failing therefore it would be better to make clear the objective is not to increase the number of cycle journeys but the number of cyclists and it does this by providing infrastructure that makes people feel safe. Success by this measure will not be achieved this week but will take years so patience would be needed.
Mark Evans ● 34d
Andrew,If you are "disappointed" by the cycling numbers, presumably you are totally gutted by the decline in the number of cars which is even larger.It is worthwhile pointing out that the April 2018 figures are from a single day (18 April 2018) while the 2021 figures have been measured 24x7 continually from 24 March of this year.As you can see from the graph, the 2021 maximum and minimum range and interquartile range (the middle 50%) have a fairly large variation.It therefore can't be assumed that the April 2018 numbers are an average for the period. They could be in the top 10% or 5% for that time. Someone with better maths than me could work out the probability.So for example, at around 5pm, on about 25% of the days between March and August, there were more people cycling than there were on 18 April 2018.So I'm not sure how you claim that people were "definitely" taking other routes given there were more people cycling than there was in the April 2018 counts for about a quarter of the days in that 5 month period. The April 2018 figures are most recent pre-pandemic hourly counts that I'm aware of so still worth showing as a comparison.If the September numbers show further growth as people actually start going back to the office I assume you will revise your opinion.
Michael Robinson ● 35d
Perhaps Cllr Hearn can tell us what the modal share of bikes needs to be before he will stop whining?
Michael Robinson ● 35d
Based on the chart that started this thread off it actually looks as though cycling fell in absolute numbers from 2018 to date - although pretty obviously Covid was the major effect.The problem with claiming a modal shift is that in a period of declining total journeys by all types of transport it is entirely possible that all that is happening is cycling is declining slower than other modes - there aren't any new cyclists but simple existing cyclists doing the journeys they always did.I am not saying that is actually what is happening but it is a scenario consistent with the data provided on this thread.Against that I will say I do far more journeys by bike or walking than I did in 2018 and I am healthier for it
Justin Stephenson ● 35d
"My real point was about the schemes imposed on 'South Chiswick'. "No, the subject of both your earlier post and your post on this thread was clearly C9 and you didn't make any mention of South Chiswick. You are just changing the subject rather than answering my question.And now your criticism switches from "no data" to "reading far too much into the data", though you haven't provided any refutation of what the data clearly shows, that there has indeed been a modal shift from bikes to cars on the High Road. Why would you demand data to answer your specific question and then when it is provided refuse to accept the answer the data gives?
Tom Pike ● 35d
The significant difference with the cycle lane and the first section of the M25 is the motorway wasn't rushed in as a temporary bodge.The unknown is of course if C9 wasn't rushed in how much cycling along CHR would have increased anyway as a result of folk avoiding public transport and being around home a lot more. I think it's fair to assume it would have been quite high.
Adrian Irving ● 35d
Without this data how can you measure modal-shift? The Overview and Scrutiny Call In Panel could understand this but it was all a bit too challenging for the Hounslow's cabinet. They were rightfully concerned about the impact of poor air quality on children's lungs sadly they did not appreciate that the SCLN measures force more cars on to the A316 - this cannot be improving the air quality experienced by pupils of Cavendish Primary School, Chiswick School or Hogarth School. Then there are the lungs of the residents of the nursing home and housing for the elderly also located on the A316. As I say all a bit to challenging for the members of Hounslow's cabinet. Our call-in also excluded the school street schemes but Cabinet members had clearly not read that far into the paper work .....
Cllr Sam Hearn ● 35d
We certainly agree it’s not the best thing ever. It was literally a rush job, though it had the benefit of a being based on a permanent scheme. It will be much better once that permanent scheme is installed, in the first instance east of Chiswick Lane. We also completely agree that it’s a somewhat isolated asset until its extended across Hammersmith, especially around the gyratory. I remember seeing one of the early portions of the M25 emerge over a couple of years down the hill from where I was brought up. The traffic on that link hardly seemed to justify the time and money spent on building it. When the M25 was completed I wondered why they only put in six lanes!
Tom Pike ● 35d
Commuting is still nowhere near the levels it was in 2018.We are only back in the office 1 or 2 days a week, and working from home a lot of the time. There are long term plans for "hybrid working" so we will never be back to 2018 levels where I work.Having said that, the High Road is awful as a commuter route on a bike. It always has been. There are too many junctions and it is too slow. I used to use the A4 when I worked in central London. It was a good 5 minutes quicker to Hammersmith from Grove Park. It was safer as well, as there are a lot less junctions.
Al Webber ● 35d
"There has been continuous monitoring of both modal shift and air quality along the High Road."You are reading far to much into the data available thus far. My real point was about the schemes imposed on 'South Chiswick'. Absolutely no air quality monitoring before or after implementation. Absolutely no monitoring of cycle traffic before or after implementation. The pipes across the road can recognise a car but not a bike. Traffic officers tell me it is far to expensive to monitor bike traffic.
Cllr Sam Hearn ● 35d
Tom, I agree with what you say in your first paragraph, it's good more people are cycling but even you must be disappointed with the significant design errors, the fact C9 has fallen far short of what it should have been in terms distance, the knock on effect to other road users including pedestrians, the shoddy workmanship and ugly wands plonked along the route.I really don't understand why some people think it's the best thing ever, it's definitely not.
Adrian Irving ● 35d
Commuting is down by every transport mode, but commuting by bike is now a higher proportion of traffic along the High Road. Daytime cycling has increased very significantly in both absolute and relative terms and overall cycling has seen both absolute and relative growth along the High Road. If you claim that’s “disappointing” I think that says more about your assessment than about changes in cycling along the High Road.
Tom Pike ● 35d
C9, what is it in reality?The true is the only section of 'fully' protected cycle lane is from Goldhawk Road to Turnham Green, about 1500 metres. That's it.Until and if it goes from somewhere to somewhere worthwhile it's certainly not for commuters as originally primarily intended.Personally I avoid it by weaving through the back streets or cycling by the river.
Adrian Irving ● 35d
Sam, you asked earlier this year "why are neither TfL or LBH taking any steps to measure modal-shift or changes in air quality? I think we all know the answer to that one. Cycleway 9 is and has always been a vain attempt to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.You were wrong. There has been continuous monitoring of both modal shift and air quality along the High Road. That monitoring shows that contrary to what you claim, overall bike numbers are up compared to 2018, with the larger increase during the day more than compensating for the fall during the commuting hours. It also shows that there has been a significant modal shift from cars to bikes, and an improvement in air quality.You also posted "Modal shift is no laughing matter. Without it the whole cycleway scheme is essentially pointless."So you now have direct evidence of the modal shift which should bring reduced emissions as well as direct evidence of improved air quality. As Paul Samuelson said "When my information changes, I alter my conclusions.” Isn't it time you altered yours?
Tom Pike ● 35d
No matter how you slice it and dice it these numbers are disappointing. There was a very powerful incentive to switch from public transport to cycling (i.e. not catching a potentially fatal disease) so higher growth numbers could have been expected. I know these are not strictly like for like comparisons but the charts suggest no growth at all.
That people are having to do FoI requests to get these numbers is a pretty clear demonstration they are not telling the story that TfL wants them to.
I'm surprised as personally I've substituted bus and tube journeys for the bike much more since the pandemic although this is partly down to cost as I have not always had a travel card. The same reasoning should have applied to others i.e. there was a strong incentive to take public transport because the marginal cost was zero but this was removed during the pandemic when people weren't commuting daily.
Mark is definitely right that commuting cyclists are choosing other routes because the High Road is much slower now and I'd add that in 2018 we had Mobike which at its peak was easily making up one in ten of the bikes that I saw in Chiswick.
Andrew OSullivan ● 35d
The graph actually shows a reduction in the use of CHR by cyclists since 2018. I would prefer to see a full year's worth of post lockdown data before drawing too many conclusions - even then I am sure that you would find a way of explaining that a fall in cyclist numbers was actually highly indicative of the overwhelming success of C9.
Cllr Sam Hearn ● 35d
I’ve done my usual rekkie of South Parade and Acton Lane, on my return home. Heavy traffic, though thankfully moving. One cyclist emerged from Fishers Lane, finally a lesser spotted cyclist has been seen in the area. Lucky to still be with us though, as she turned left without hesitation onto South Parade, without even slowing down and narrowly missed a car driving past. Didn’t bat an eye lid. I believe what I see, not statistics
Maggie Dodge ● 35d
Tom , as I sat in traffic in Chiswick today, trying to get out, with not a cyclist in sight, I thought of you. It’s fine I’ve recovered now 😂
Maggie Dodge ● 35d
Glad you’re happy, Maggie….As Michael mentioned, the data came from an FOI request to TfL made by John Balmond of One Chiswick. For some reason neither John nor One Chiswick felt any need publicise results showing a very significant modal shift from bikes to cars. These results are of course consistent with the substantial drop in pollution on the High Road seen by the air quality monitoring station. The collapse of retail on the High Road which some claimed was the inevitable outcome of C9 has singularly failed to materialise. In fact quite the opposite has occurred with retail vacancy rates at an historic low. I’ve seen no reports of bike-enabled jewellery heists, either. Overall C9 is delivering on its aims, while the claimed disbenefits have simply not occurred. Any news you’ve heard on the JR? A lot of money has been spent on lawyers but we’ve not seen much come out from it.
Tom Pike ● 35d
Ha ha Tom you’re such a card. So absolutely everything’s evaporating as predicted. Thank goodness for that
Maggie Dodge ● 35d
Car commuting has fallen even further on the High Road since 2018 - it's halved in the morning and evening peaks. Those who are commuting along the High Road have been switching to cycling with bike counts reaching over 70% the number of cars in the morning, significantly higher than in 2018. On some mornings there have been more bikes than cars going in.Commuting is down overall in London, but those coming in along the High Road are increasingly on bikes.
Tom Pike ● 35d
I read that Cllr Curran says he “ doesn’t cycle as much as he should” dies t lookLike he walks much from his expanding waistline. Perhaps someone could help him find Chiswick and he could do a few laps of C9 to boost numbers. Alternatively he could admit he likes driving his car and stopPersecuting other drivers
Maggie Dodge ● 35d
Jeremy,Commuting is down for all modes of transport. It remains to be seen if it ever recovers to previous levels if many people WFH for some days and go into the office for others compared to a previous 5 days a week commute.September numbers may reveal more as many companies in central London (including where I work) only started to open their offices in September.September was the highest ever month for Santander bike hires.The CHR data is available for eastbound and westbound flows.
Michael Robinson ● 35d
Calm down Paul!One interesting thing about these numbers is that they do seem to confirm the 'Deliveroo effect'. The evening peak seems to be much higher than the morning peak but if you are on Chiswick High Road between 6pm and 7pm the reason for the difference is immediately apparent - a large proportion of cyclists are delivering food. I'm surprised commuting cycling is falling although I take Mark's point it may just be being displaced. I would have thought lots of people would have switched to cycling to avoid catching coronavirus on the tube or bus. Is it a London wide trend that cycle commuting is down or is it just Chiswick?
Jeremy Parkinson ● 35d
"numbers should further increase when the route is extended in Hammersmith and Fulham. It really won't be a surprise next year if there are days when bikes outnumber cars."Yes I saw yesterday that Paris is planning more bike trips than car trips by 2023/24 by making its temporary pandemic cycle lanes permanent, investing €250m in more lanes, removing parking for beaucoup de voitures, and I thought to myself that Chiswick High Road is definitely going to beat them to it.
Paul Campbell ● 35d
Pointing out that commuting numbers are down compared to before the pandemic is hardly a surprise. A graph showing numbers of people using public transport before and after the pandemic would show exactly the same.
April 2018 numbers are from a DfT survey on Chiswick High Road which is the best publicly available data from before the pandemic.
The 2021 numbers are from a Freedom of Information request, you should be able to find it on the FOI section of TfL website. The FOI request was done by a member of OneChiswick. Funnily enough, OneChiswick hasn't publicised the data. Perhaps a revelation that the pandemic has affected commuting numbers was not even news to them.
What perhaps is more interesting is the increase of people using the cycle route during the "inter peak" period. This perhaps shows more people WFH and using the cycle route to visit CHR during the day.
It is a mistake to concentrate on commuting anyway given this only represents a minority of journeys in London. Separating out weekday and weekend figures shows good usage at weekends.
Another interesting point is modal share of bikes and cars. Even in 2018 this was 20% (1 bike for every 4 cars) while in 2021 some monthly averages have reached 33% (one bike for every 2 days) and daily averages reached 40% on some days.
Given the lane on Chiswick High Rd is only 1.2km and doesn't have a good connection yet to the east, numbers should further increase when the route is extended in Hammersmith and Fulham. It really won't be a surprise next year if there are days when bikes outnumber cars. Good news.
Michael Robinson ● 35d
This is not surprising as Cycleway 9 has exchanged speed for safety. The extra traffic light, and the long phases for cyclists can add a significant amount to a journey time particularly if you are unlucky with the lights. The narrowing of the roads for general traffic and the consistent jams at rush hour mean there are too many pinch points to move more quickly off the cycle lane.As I've said on the forum before this doesn't mean Cycleway 9 is a failure. A commuter cyclist could travel up and down Chiswick High Road ten times a week whereas a leisure cyclist might only do so once so if you are favouring the latter overall numbers are likely to fall. However, it is unlikely commuter cyclists will have abandoned this mode of travel, they will just have switched to alternative routes. The benefit of more leisure cyclists is longer term in that many will be new to cycling and some might even later on commute by bike.TfL have made a huge mistake in my view by not explaining this earlier on and making overblown claims about the increases in cycling due to C9.
Mark Evans ● 36d