The expansion of Boris bikes into Shaftesbury has been touted for a long time, and the proposed sites have been (sort of) public knowledge for a while. However, the process of installation has moved onto the more formal stage with TfL starting to apply for planning permissions where necessary.
Shaftesbury ward, and especially the Shaftesbury Park estate, is well served by the proposed sites. Perhaps too well served. I should declare an interest that some of the sites are remarkably close to my home (indeed, one is almost right outside) – though I would qualify that by adding I’m indifferent to whether or not a docking station is close to me or not.
My one comment throughout the process is that docking stations should be located, counter-intuitively, slightly inconveniently, meaning users have a short walk which increases footfall in some of our shopping parades: improving the vibrancy of our shopping areas and, hopefully, the bottom line for our traders.
I’m not sure my input had any on TfL’s thinking. Certainly one of my suggestions – using the dead-ends created by estates north of Lavender Hill which were placed with no regard to permeability – got nowhere. Apparently, it’s not possible to build a docking station on a slight slope: you can see how TfL are the successors to the pioneers of the world’s first and most complex mass transit system 150 years ago.
If you want to have your say keep an eye out for the various planning applications. You can also find out more from the report being considered at tonight’s Strategic Planning and Transport OSC and the appendices.