Cyclists speak out on new stop-start cycle lane on busy Portsmouth road

James Taylor at his desk in his office at 116 High Street, Old Portsmouth.

Those halcyon days when pen and paper just worked!

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Cyclists in Portsmouth have been having their say on the decision to introduce stop-start cycle lanes along one of Portsmouth’s busiest roads.

New lines have been painted along Havant Road from west to east, but rather than running continuously the lanes are separated along the route.

White cycle symbols have also been introduced at junctions to warn drivers that cyclists may be passing by.

Roger Inkpen, treasurer of the Portsmouth Cycle Forum, welcomed the lanes as a way to separate bikes and cars.

He said: ‘For the council it is an easy option to put lanes in an area like this where there are not many parking spaces.

‘Certainly they were thinking about cyclists when they put the symbols on the road. That is a posiitve thing.’

Portsmouth City Council said the system is used because some parts of the road are too narrow to allow a cycle lane.

But it is not clear how cyclists will be able to keep themselves safe when they are not in one of the lanes.

Mr Inkpen said he understood the council’s concern, but said the lack of cycle lanes could cause a problem near the Drayton shops.

He said: ‘The worrying thing is the section along the shops because there is parking along the side of the road.

‘It is one of the busier sections where cars will be pulling out, and there will be more interaction between cyclists, cars and pedestrians.

‘It is a shame that they [the council] have not put anything in place there but I can understand why because there is not enough space with the car parking.’

Fellow cyclists have been giving their opinions on our Facebook page.

Steve Evans posted: ‘I ride this route every day and in my opinion it has made the route worse.

‘The cycle lanes are all over the place and now I have to ride over these silly raised lumps with bikes on.’

The council says that it is looking at similar cycle safety improvements in Fratton, Kingston, London Road and Goldsmith Avenue.

The council’s director for transport Alan Cufley said: ‘Havant Road is a busy route for motorists and cyclists, so we’ve introduced new markings to remind road users to look out for cyclists, especially at junctions.’