Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Boris courts floating voters.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson reveals plans for UK's largest floating village!

Boris Johnson said "The capital would have a major role to play in Britain’s economic recovery as he revealed plans to build the UK’s largest floating village at the city’s Royal Docks." BoJo said "London was benefiting from a post Olympics boom. London is the locomotive of the UK. We have got to stop talking the language of austerity. That is not a policy for economic growth.” The Mayor’s plans for the Royal Victoria Dock site will see 15 acres of water developed into hotels, restaurants, bars and new homes.

When it is built it will be one and a half times the size of Green Park in central London, with transport links including a new Crossrail station, DLR, and a cable car linking it to central London and Canary Wharf. “This site is unique. It has the potential to become one of the most sought after addresses in the capital while breathing new life back into London’s waterways.” Mr Johnson said. The formal procurement process to create “the Venice of London” will begin this summer. International developers must have a London-based partner to qualify for work on the scheme. The Mayor said the Government needed to do more to boost the construction sector and infrastructure to drive UK growth.

BoJO has also published his Vision for Cycling for the capital, the centrepiece being what he has termed 'Crossrail for the bike' - a 15-mile corridor running from East to West across the city. He claims it will be "the longest substantially-segregated continuous cycle route of any city in Europe" and says "It will use a new segregated cycle track along, among other places, the Victoria Embankment and the Westway flyover" - turning one lane of one of the capital's most notorious roads into a two-way, segregated cycle lane.

The Mayor's Vision aims for four key outcomes;

1. A Tube network for the bike. London will have a network of direct, high-capacity, joined-up cycle routes. Many will run in parallel with key Underground, rail and bus routes, radial and orbital, signed and branded accordingly: the ‘Bakerloo Superhighway’; the ‘Circle Quietway’, and so on. A ‘bike Crossrail’ will run, substantially segregated, from west London to Barking. Local routes will link with them. There will be more Dutch-style, fully-segregated lanes and junctions; more mandatory cycle lanes, semi-segregated from general traffic; and a network of direct back-street Quietways, with segregation and junction improvements over the hard parts.

2. Safer streets for the bike. London’s streets and spaces will become places where cyclists feel they belong and are safe. Spending on the junction review will be significantly increased, and it will be completely recast to prioritise major and substantial improvements to the worst junctions, though other junctions will still be tackled. With government help, a range of radical measures will improve the safety of cyclists around large vehicles.

3. More people travelling by bike. Cycling across London will double in the next 10 years. We will ‘normalise’ cycling, making it something anyone feels comfortable doing. Hundreds of thousands more people, of all ages, races and backgrounds, and in all parts of London, will discover that the bike has changed their lives.

4. Better places for everyone. Our policies will help all Londoners, whether or not they have any intention of getting on a bicycle. Our new bike routes are a step towards the Mayor’s vision of a ‘village in the city’, creating green corridors, even linear parks, with more tree-planting, more space for pedestrians and less traffic. Cycling will promote community safety, bringing new life and vitality to underused streets. Our routes will specifically target parts of the Tube and bus network which are over capacity, promoting transfers to the bike and relieving crowding for everyone. Cycling will transform more of our city into a place dominated by people, not motor traffic.

Your scribe has been a bit quiet of late - that's because I managed to fracture a finger and badly bruise the rest. 


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