Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Uprating the route, downgrading the experience

Here are a couple of civil engineers surveying the riverside path from Eastville park and the (now closed to cars) Wickham Glen to Broomhill Road. You can ride it, its lovely, but you do then have to carry your bike up a flight of steps.

It's going to be uprated, with the steps removed, making it part of an extended route up to UWE and The North.
Problem is -those steps. The surveyors said that from where the photo was taken, it was going to need a 1 in 20 gradient to bring the path up to the road. Which means this lovely green path (admittedly, it becomes unusable for commuting in the rainy season), is going to change to something tarmaced that slowly rises up to the road.

In its favour, it will still be green and quiet. But at the same time, its urbanification. Just as with any upgrading of Purdown Camp routes, what you gain in bike friendliness, you lose in wilderness.


Chris Hutt said...

Pedantic point. Is it tarmaced or tarmacked? I mean one says trafficked rather than trafficed, doesn't one?

Of course you could dodge the question by saying 'asphalted' instead.

Thomas Guest said...

Where's the ambition? Surely a viaduct for cyclists spanning both the Frome and the M32 is what's needed here.

Dru Marland said...

you could insert an apostrophe to indicate an abbreviation, or use the full version: thus tarmac'd or tarmacadamed....

...I favour a steep incline and assistance from a donkey engine.

Anonymous said...

"what you gain in bike friendliness, you lose in wilderness"

hmmm. This was a bit how I felt about the 'farm path'. Now it's all bikeified it's less attractive as a part of a running route, and not at all attractive as just a short recreational walk-by-the-allotments.

Don't get me wrong - I want bike paths, want them very much indeed. And I also understand psychological reality - the authorities go for the easy ones first, so they can put off tackling the conflict that their afraid will happen when they start grasping the nettle of reducing *motorised* traffic.

Martin P

[damn - you now don't seem to allow comment from people without some sort of blasted blog. I have a wordpress account but it's not a blog dammit, and I don't want traffic!]

Chris Hutt said...

Martin P, 'reluctantly' drawing attention to your site and then saying you don't want traffic is a really clever way of getting people to visit your site.

Oh, whatever you do please don't visit my blog.

SteveL said...

@Martin, sorry about the non-anoymous posting, it just makes managing the spam comments slightly easier. Sorry. OpenID works with lots of people (like yahoo, or you can be your own OID provider if you try)

@Pedants: tarmacadamed. Or tarmacarrooned.

@Tag: viaduct over the frome? For bicycles? The M32!

Unknown said...

This is a completely unneccessary and expensive development which will ruin the natural habitat with the loss of mature trees. Cyclists can easily use the path up Wickham Hill which they are having to do whilst these works go ahead against the wishes of the majority of the local community - those who know the environment best. Whilst I welcome better quality and greener off-road cycle routes I am very disappointed at the politics behind this development.