Birmingham City Council recently won a funding bid for cycling which awarded them £18m of money with which they intend to invest in an overhaul of cycling infrastructure in the city.Included in the original plan was the proposal to create a ramp from the canal towpath up to university station. The ramp would allow bicyclists and those in wheelchairs or with mobility issues easy access to the canal. Network Rail are currently blocking the ramp plans and pushing for a less accesible push rail to be implemented on the existing stairway. The addition of a ramp would greatly benefit the cycling community at the University of Birmingham and allow the thousands of commuters to the university easy access to an underused car free bike path. You can find the online petition here: http://s.coop/allowacanaltowpath and the full text below
We, the undersigned, petition for a more accessible pathway between the canal towpath and the University Station bridge. This will enable a variety of users to access something that we should all be able to enjoy. This will not only benefit cyclists, who currently struggle to get from the station to other parts of the city, but also a variety of other groupings – such as people with mobility issues, parents with young children, and older people. Having a towpath will be good for all as it will enable more forms of sustainable transport, more healthy lifestyles and less expensive transport options for people. It will also give the aforementioned groups more autonomy in their choice of transport. However, if people cannot access it using stairs, then a ramp would be a good choice – and indeed has been included as a proposal in previous papers. With a current modal rate of 1% of all journeys in Birmingham, our cycling provision needs to be better and those first steps (only one month after the DfT’s grant was awarded in August) are opportune moments to show Birmingham City Council is creating a revolution not an evolution – as we gather you were concerned about when ‘Changing Gear’ was presented in April 2013. Please support this if you are in favour of supporting more sustainable, green forms of transport within the Birmingham city area, promoting healthy lifestyles, and helping vulnerable groups to make autonomous choice with regards to their transportation. Let’s turn the car city into a cycle city – revolution not evolution. Supported by Tom Wragg (Vice-President Democracy & Resources at the University of Birmingham Guild of Students), Ellis Palmer (Disabled Students’ Officer at the University of Birmingham Guild of Students), Rachel Cavet (Ethical & Environmental Officer at the University of Birmingham Guild of Students) and the Green Bike Project (local co-op based at the University of Birmingham) The ‘Birmingham Cycle Revolution’ aims to make cycling a widespread mode of transport accessible to as many people as possible. As such, it submitted an application to the Department for Transport (DfT) for £17m (in addition to around £7m from Birmingham City Council’s own budget). The Cycle City Ambition Grant has been granted and the people of Birmingham, as well as visitors, can access the green and blue corridors.