I live in Richmond and its great that a short distance down the South Circular Road there is suddenly a hive of activity with cycle hire docks appearing around Putney as promised.
Today I saw eight docks, three completed and five in progress, with a further proposed 3 or 4 yet to be started.
Two of the eight were not on the original proposal and amazingly there is one of these being constructed on the Upper Richmond Road itself, just around the corner from Putney station entrance. Whilst taking up a large amount of pavement (no infringement for pedestrians and the road is red route) it appears only to have 20 docks. It is amidst a lot of street furniture -a tree, telephone box, hydrants and street lamps. The council also appear to be having the same workmen re-install 8 regular racks taken for the dock in addition to the dozen or so that exist on this stretch. So a significant cycle oasis.
To compliment this dock a proposed one of 33 points is under way in the parallel Disraeli Street the other side of the station and in front of the public library – a great location and so no known objections there.
Further down the High Street there are two more – Felsham Road being constructed (27 points) and in Montserrat Road a 29 point one has been completed. Both are safely well sited.
In Northfields by the terrific Wandsworth Park there is a completed 29 point dock. Although cycling is not allowed in the park itself there is a slip lane to the river embankment on which it is legal to cycle although I’m not sure how far you can ride in either direction yet as I don’t own a bike to be rectified when I hire one. Putney Bridge Road although suffering fast traffic and no cycle lane, appears to be a comfortable ride into Wandsworth Town and onto Battersea / Clapham.
In Oxford Road in front of the School of Art and Design another dock is in progress with what looks like 28 points – the station itself is currently under massive reconstruction and a second new entrance may be sited in this road. East Putney Station is also close by.
Finally the other dock being constructed and with 33 points is also in the Upper Richmond Road and almost next to East Putney Station. This is the dock which has received a lot of criticism from the businesses on the opposite side of the road who claim not to have been informed about its construction and that it has taken 8 car parking spaces and potentially a lot of new and existing customers. Whilst it is certainly true about the car spaces taken and that only four remain, it is interesting to note when you look at the parking conditions that no mention has been made by them that it is a red route 7AM to 7PM, allows only 1 hour waiting and no return. On the opposite side of the road directly in front of the businesses complaining, is another but longer parking area, again red route 7AM to 7PM with a 30 minute wait and no return! Hopefully there will be no impact to them except maybe more business from cyclists – LOL?
I’m sure there will be a significant uptake of the bikes in the whole of this area, with Richmond Park definitely seeing more of them. And because it also forms a new perimeter for the scheme, Serco will need to be on top of there redistribution game!