Don’t impound bikes, give us more bike stands, argues LLC27/11/2004 News
29th November: Bike owners in London will find their bikes disappearing from streets and the locks destroyed without compensation if a new bill sponsored by London Boroughs and Transport for London gets through parliament.
And it will be council employees, not thieves, removing the bikes, warns the London Cycling Campaign.
The London Boroughs, led by the City of Westminster, together with Transport for London are sponsoring a bill (the London Local Authority and Transport for London Bill); under which councils will be allowed to impound pedal cycles that are neither an obstruction nor a hazard.
Councils will be able to remove any cycles in the vicinity of posted notices where, in their opinion, bikes are a ‘nuisance’ or offend against ‘good management of the highway.’ Bike owners whose bikes are taken may think their bikes have been stolen and not claim them back.
Tom Bogdanowicz, Campaigns Manager at LCC, said: “We don’t have nearly enough bicycle parking stands in London – to allow Councils to remove bikes that aren’t abandoned or causing any obstruction without adequate warning is ridiculous. Council officials will have free licence to destroy cycle locks costing up to £100.
“It will mean distress for those whose bikes are taken; it will discourage people who want to cycle; and it will only lead to an increase in traffic congestion and pollution. Instead of measures that can only waste time and money on all sides, what we need is for Councils and TfL to focus urgently on providing adequate cycle parking.”
London Mayor, Ken Livingstone, has a target of a 200% increase in cycling in London. LCC warns that, by putting off cyclists, the proposed bill could undermine that target and threaten the growth in London cycling that has already been achieved.