Views are being sought on plans to create a cycle link between Muller Road and Constable Road in Horfield. Bristol City Council is building a cycle route from the city centre to the north of the city as part of its £22.8-million Cycling City project. Work to build a path between St Werburgh’s and Muller Road has begun and the council has drawn up proposals for the route from Muller Road, through Petherbridge Way, along Dovercourt Road and into Constable Road.Innocent sounding enough, but totally misleading. The cycle route "being built" by the City Council to the north of the city is not "new" at all but has existed and been in use by cyclists for decades. For the most part the work consists of improvements such as path widening and surface upgrades. Generally welcome stuff but hardly justification for claiming a "new cycle route". Even the "link" being "created" is not "between Muller Road and Constable Road" as claimed but is just 100 metres from Petherbridge Way (B&Q access) to Dovercourt Road. All the rest of the 1.2 km from Muller Road to Constable Road already exists.
Granted this short link at the bottom of Dovercourt Road could be useful if well designed (a big 'if'). It will save about 100 metres (about 30 seconds of travel time) compared to the nearest available existing route and may link more easily into the upgraded path from St Werburghs. The Council's own background paper gives a perfectly reasonable outline of the proposal so why not just announce it as a useful link rather than pretend it constitutes some major new route?
Sadly most of the proposed Cycling City infrastructure is of the same nature. A sprinkling of more or less useful links, new or upgraded, along existing cycle routes but talked up into being completely new cycle routes. How does this wilful misrepresentation fit with Jon Rogers' call for openness and honesty? Someone somewhere just isn't getting the message.