Transport for London Commissioner Peter Hendy has called the challenge of keeping London moving during the Olympic Games Britain's "largest peacetime logistical exercise", with an extra three million journeys per day predicted during Games time as sports fans from around the world converge on the capital and millions of ordinary Londoners attempt to go about their daily business.
With travel restrictions in place from Wednesday 25 July in the Olympic Route Network (the routes linking the various London venues) and advice to commuters to avoid unnecessary travel, modify travel times and work from home if possible during the Games, walking and cycling have rightly been touted as key ways to help the capital out of its 2012 travel tight-spot.
Cycling to the Games
If you’re taking time out to travel to the games, London 2012, in conjunction with Transport for London, has put a number of initiatives in place to make it easier to do so by bike. Nearly 19,000 bike parking spaces have been created at the Olympic venues, with 7000 in the Olympic park alone. Free bike maintenance has also been provided, together with updated route guides and an online cycle journey planner. For full details go here.
Commuting to work during Games time
With huge pressure on public transport and an already stretched road network pushed to the max, cycling is perhaps the only viable transport option that will deliver quick and predictable journey times during the Olympic period.
London’s cycle route network is amongst the most well developed in the UK, with Barclays Cycling Superhighway routes and a myriad of other local routes available. Transport for London’s online cycle journey planner offers users the choice of easy, moderate or fast routes from point to point, allowing you to tailor your journey to suit your level of experience.
Sustrans, the civil engineering charity responsible for the National Cycle Network, also has full online mapping and guides to cycling in London here, with the London Greenways project seeking to “create a network of attractive and functional routes for walkers and cyclists, and aims to improve access to and through green space across the capital.” For full details go here.
If you’re considering cycling during the Games but don’t own a bike, London’s bike hire scheme is just one way to avoid potential Games gridlock. For full details of the Barclays sponsored hire scheme go here.
If you’re new to commuting by bike our How to Commute by Bike section has a range of articles that will help you make the transition from car to bike, including what to wear, how to carry your gear, keeping your bike safe and more.
London Cycling Campaign’s website has some great advice and FAQs on cycling in London together with the latest news on cycle campaigning in the capital.
Useful internet links