Blackfriars: Critical Mass 6pm Friday

Transport for London have announced that they are gong to ignore the unanimous vote of the democratically elected London Assembly demanding a review of Blackfriars, and start building overnight from Friday.

Cyclists in the City is calling for Critical Mass to loop on Blackfriars this Friday. The London Cycle Campaign has also said that Critical Mass is the vehicle for cyclists to make themselves heard.

No one really needs any more persuading that what TfL is doing is regressive, but I felt compelled to address TfL’s main justification for not providing for cyclists:

Usage by cyclists through this junction [Blackfriars] is predominantly for travelling to and from work and is therefore concentrated during traditional ‘rush hour’ periods

This is true: but it’s true of traffic in general. That’s why it’s the rush hour. Look at 24 hour bike and car flows northbound in 2010:

Are they making the same arguments about cars not being important because they peak at rush hour?

The other point is for three years now, during rush hour bicycles have outnumbered all other modes of travel.

Blackfriars Bridge, north, 7-10am 1988-2010.

As we can see, bikes are also the only mode whose share is increasing. Even if we do nothing, the problems cyclists face at this junction are going to get worse, not better. Actively designing cycling out of this junction is outrageous.

If the campaign on Blackfriars fails, TfL will probably try to impose the same engineering style on all the Thames bridges, and, by extension, all other major road junctions in London under their control.

Come Friday night, I know where I’ll be…

Update 29/7/11: the London Cycle Campaign are calling for people to meet tonight at at the south end of Blackfriars Bridge, for a slow ride to Waterloo to join Critical Mass. Be at this ride first if you possibly can.

7 Responses to “Blackfriars: Critical Mass 6pm Friday”

  1. betsy Says:


  2. Blackfriars Bridge: how far to push the limits of peaceful protest? | The Bike Show - a cycling radio show and podcast from Resonance FM Says:

    […] Blackfriars Bridge flash rides planned for Friday night are all very well for expressing opinion but if sufficient riders were to […]

  3. Protest ride today on Blackfriars Bridge | As Easy As Riding A Bike Says:

    […] to know where to start with this guff. All modes of transport will peak during the rush hour, as Cycle of Futility points out, and be at their lowest at other times. So this is a particularly weak argument for […]

  4. Cycling Embassy of Great Britain: A Personal 6 Month Audit « The Lo Fidelity Bicycle Club Says:

    […] due to Mark Ames. and indeed the London Cycling Campaign. Further detail may be found here, here, here and […]

  5. Ron Says:

    There was a poster created by Muenster city illustrating the space efficiency of different forms of transport. It simply shoes 75 pedestrians, and the amount of road space they would occupy in bicycles, a bus and cars. The graphic can still be found here This picture provides a wonderful illustration of why cycle numbers can significantly outnumber other forms of traffic without being noticed or contributing toward congestion in any meaningful way. The graphic is of particular pertinence to the congestion issues over Blackfriars bridge and all the other bridges crossing the Thames.
    It’s an illustration which shows precisely why TfL’s strategy which discourages cycling will exacerbate London’s congestion problems.

  6. logistyka Says:


    […]Blackfriars: Critical Mass 6pm Friday « Cycle of Futility[…]…

  7. Photographer in Miami Beach Says:

    wonderful issues altogether, you just received a emblem new reader.

    What may you suggest in regards to your post that you made
    some days in the past? Any sure?

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