Thursday, 31 March 2011

Where are the 20 mph zones they promised?

Someone posted us this video complaining that it shows a car driver unable to think ahead, because the driver overtook a bicycle aggressively on the way into Montpelier, whereas everyone knows that you only put your foot down on the way out. The tax-dodger not only ended up being held up by the Audi YY03YGM, they had to drop down Brook Hill, sprintg along Upper Cheltenham Place and then squeeze past the car on Picton Street blocking the road with the hazard lights on, while the Audi was still stuck on York Road negotiating rights of way with whatever was coming from the other direction.

We feel that the whole incident documents a more fundamental problem. The 20 mph zone isn't delivering what was promised.

The opening sequence shows how a bicycle doing 18 mph held up the car, but as soon as they go a little above 20 mph to get past them, there's another oncoming bicycle before the blind zig-zags. Even the bicycle video documents the other problems: the pedestrian and their dog on Brook Hill, the two bicycles on Upper Cheltenham Place, the two kids playing with a Pogo Stick in the road -our road- at 1:14, and then another bicycle. At least the car with the hazard lights on has paid for the right to be there.

Where are the 20 mph zones? The signs show them, but the car would have been lucky to have an average speed of 10 mph across the entire journey. We were promised 20 mph limits, yet it only takes one or two people walking, cycling or even pogo-sticking around and you brought screeching to a halt. We have been betrayed.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Brunel Ford -proud to sponsor the Concorde Way

One thing missing from the official opening of the Concorde Way a couple of weeks back was the sponsor. London has Barclays "wealth for the wealthy" sponsoring the bikelanes "a tax-deductible gift for the poor in our society". Nobody was forthcoming in North Bristol, as our main local benefactor prefers to support development in and near Ashton Gate, rather than up here, Bristol Rovers territory.

Hence: no sponsor

This has changed, as J0TCT shows.

The best view is from Dovercourt way, where anyone who avoided a dooring incident gets a lovely view of a better option for the city.

Our tax-dodging troublemaker is here recorded harassing an innocent driver.

Let's review the video and score the discussion
  1. The tax-dodger takes the photograph and says this will be the reference "before" photograph: kick-off!
  2. The driver rightfully points out, no yellow lines -hence legal. 1-nil!
  3. The tax dodger responds: blocking dropped kerbs are illegal as is obstructing a cycle route, and that they could call the police. 1-all!
  4. The driver counters with "you are cycling on the pavement". 2-1 to Brunel Ford!
  5. The troublemaker tries to respond with "that's because there is a large vehicle blocking my normal access point". Offside!
We hope the troublemaker will see the error of their ways and buy a nice new Ford Focus, especially now that our Chancellor has reduced the cost of filling up the car by 50 pence.

Incidentally, can we say that we agree with all the comments added to the youtube page -our site does not in any way condone walking, cycling or public transport.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Dovercourt Door markings

The new glue-on markings in Dovercourt road "concorde way" are placed in the ideal position to discourage survivors from ever approaching a bicycle again.

Sadly we have been forwarded some email in which the cycling team claim that this was some kind of error and will be corrected.
You are absolutely right about the location of the symbols on Dovercourt Road they have been incorrectly marked due to an error using old plans. We will rectify this.

We agree, anything trying to encourage such subversive actions as not driving in the city needs correction. On that topic, we are pleased to announce the Brunel Ford are now the official sponsors of the Concorde Way, The extension of the Farm Pub Path. More to follow soon.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Breaking news: parking restrictions encourage higher vehicle speeds

The new "neighbourhood funding" schemes are great for us, the drivers, as we can use our money to get what we want: parking, without any city-wide initiative like public transport, sustainability or cycling getting in the way. This is why we are delighted to cover the "DEVOLVED TRANSPORT SCHEMES FOR 2011/12" for Clifton and Cliftonwood, which will be up for discussion on Tuesday at 19:00 above Jack's Brasserie behind the waterfront TSB building.

The important people in Clifton have been successful in adding one-way streets by Clifton-college, so making easier to do Range-Rover and Volvo XC60 dropoff, and held up the provisioning of bicycle parking on the grounds that it degrades the listed buildings. However there still aren't enough places to park our important cars. How to add more parking, without appearing blatantly selfish? The answer is obvious: push for it on road safety grounds.

This is the tactic planned for tomorrow, with the following proposals in the set.
  • Lay-by at the bottom of Hope Chapel Hill: Existing parking restrictions encourage higher vehicle speeds
  • Pembroke Road (St.Pauls Road end). More on-street parking would reduce vehicle speeds.
These claims are far better than the ones for Clifton Park and Princess Victoria Street, both of which just say "existing parking restrictions are too extensive", by which they mean "the bit by the side of the road where people cycle could be used by important people".

We hope all our local supporters turn up for this, and support the proposals and so make sure that we outnumber any cycling/living street troublemakers who sneak in and start calling us selfish gits who are more concerned about having somewhere to park our third car outside our houses than doing something to fundamentally improve Bristol's liveability. Those people don't realise that having somewhere to park our third Landrover -it's more than just a car- does improve Bristol's Liveability. Certainly it makes it easier to walk from the Landrover to our house, and by saving us driving around, reduces pollution and the CO2 emissions from our 3L V8 engines.

Futhermore, once that parking is in, it will be that much harder to put in bike lanes, so any ideas for adding some segregated route up Pembroke Road -our secret high speed alternative to Whiteladies Road- would be killed forever. It's important to do this now, before alternate transport plans progress.

Yes, those troublemakers will say "if we want parking we should have voted for the RPZ", but they miss the point: that would have restricted the number of vehicles we could own. Furthermore, by reducing the number of vehicles parked on the roads on a weekday, vehicle speeds have increased and Clifton is now a more dangerous place to walk. We have a spreadsheet we've just made up to prove it!

Note also that a large number of the other schemes (Ambrose Road, Cliftonwood Road, Alfred Hill, Westbourne Place and Redcliffe hill) are complaints by people about how parking is interfering with pedestrians. It is important to attend to stop this, otherwise the troublemakers will pick up on the complete hypocrisy of pushing for extra parking to calm roads in some parts of the area, while having to introduce bollards and dropped kerbs in other parts. We want parking everywhere, and no RPZ in our way.

Walthamize the planet, and have a nice day.

Stealing our Roadspace

While the cyclists are still loojking for examples of where the cycle city program stole roadspace from us, we and Cllr Gollop know the truth: even bike parking in the middle of the Centre is stealing space from us.

And that's without even getting us started on the whole roundabout/centre debate, let alone the need to re-instate the dual carriageway through Queen's Square. They took our ring road and gave us greenery. And is that bit up for sale so we can buy it and bring back the road, a group of motivated volunteer Road Builders? Fat chance.

[photo by Martin of Bristol Culture]

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Red Bull: on the motorists side

In the F1 races, Red Bull are fielding a team. In Bristol a while back, they also had a vehicle on show in Clifton

Yes, it was just an electric thing, but it was on our side
Proof: THB61S is on double yellow lines, has a tax disk and two parking tickets!

[photo by Martin of Bristol Culture

Friday, 25 March 2011

Friday Afternoon Quiz

A typical scene in Stokes Croft. Click to enlarge.

What might be wrong?

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Crossing not in use

Classic anti-pedestrian scenes on Gloucester Road on a Saturday morning.

The gas digging has stopped, but the crossing not in use signs have been left up all weekend. Why? These people on foot are not important. Not even to the shops
Important people drive to the shops, even if the only place to park is by another crossing, as the Range Rover 284RAF is doing. But by doing so it ensures that no cyclists sneak up the inside lane and run the red light, so the woman barely visible pushing her child across the road is safer.

On this topic, just think how much parking space is wasted by pedestrian crossings of one kind or another! It probably takes up more space than all the cycling city improvements. This is yet another argument in favour of removing traffic lights in the city: every pedestrian crossing we take away not only saves time, it provides more parking opportunities!
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Cycling Practises Condemned

Magnus R points us at a lovely set of of cyclist denunciations from a long time ago, the time -1934- when the Daily Mail was busy supporting Mosely's Black Shirts, and everyone was scared of communists.

These government drawings don't come out and spell out the harsh truth: people on bicycles could be communists, and it was the duty of every driver who believed that a strong authority in government was the solution to our problems was to cut up the "traffic dodgers" and discourage them from even trying it again.


Game Theory and Junction Blocking

Game theory divides games into those in which all information is visible to all players (like chess), and those where each side holds secrets (like poker). There are different tactics in each. In a game when the position and intent of all players is visible the Nash Equilibrium -the steady state reached when every player can predict the optimal moves of their opponents and act accordingly- is easier to reach.

In junctions, it comes down to "do you block the junction or not". Here on Cheltenham Road the taxi says yes.
Then, just before the lights change, it moves forward and another car makes the same decision.

Here in this video from the St Michaels Hill roundabout, you can see another taxi making the same decision.

In highway-code theory, blocking junctions is selfish and can lead to total gridlock.

In Game Theory, as applied to Bristol City streets, blocking the junction is the correct thing to do. why?
  1. You know that nobody is going to penalise anyone who blocks a junction.
  2. If you block a junction, when the road ahead eventually moves, you will get through.
  3. If the other players in the game -the other vehicles who get time at the lights, block the junction, you don't get a chance to drive yourself, hence will never make progress.
  4. You are therefore forced to pull out and block the lane -if you know the other players will do the same thing.
  5. The other players know the same thing, -that your best strategy to make progress is to pull out and block the lane.
  6. Therefore they will pull out and block the lane themselves, as it is the only way they make progress.
  7. Therefore your best strategy, given your knowledge of their best strategy, is to pull out.
This is the Nash Equilibrium: the steady state where no player in the game has any incentive to change their strategy. If any driver at the front of the lights doesn't pull out and block the junction, all they will do is annoy the cars behind.

This is why drivers in the city don't get annoyed by other cars doing this. They'd do the same thing. The only way to change this would be to change assumption (1), that there is no penalty for blocking a junction.

Game Theory: the maths you can play on the commute. Even if you don't realise it.

Monday, 21 March 2011

This is the roadspace they are stealing

Over in the cycling mailing lists -which we spy on- lots of people are complaining "where is the road space that Cllr Gollop says the cycling city program has stolen"? They point out that the big infrastructure projects are on parkland, public commons and pavements. In the city centre, no road space has been re-allocated from motor vehicle to bicycle.

This misses the point. Every bicycle on our road is stealing roadspace just from the taxpayer who could fit in the same space. What is worse, by slowing down the vehicles behind, they are slowing down important people to their speed.

Here is an example, Stokes Croft at about 9am one weekday.

You can hear a car sounding its horn -it's the black golf turning left at 0:12. Why is it upset? There is a bicycle going straight on in its way. It should not be there! There is a small cycle lane in the left side of the road used for parking, and if the cyclists aren't using that, they are holding up people in a hurry -they deserve to be harassed.

We count 10 bicycles going towards town in a minute -one every second. They have effectively stolen the left lane from important people. Admittedly, that left lane is a bus lane right up to the soon-to-open "tesco minimart designated parking area", formerly known as "the cheltenham road bike lane". We know that bus lanes are for important people to drive in or park in, and these troublemakers are denying us this right.

This is the real failure of the Cycling City program, that during its lifetime the number of cyclists on the road has increased, and that by doing so, they are taking away road space from the city, even without any new bike lanes or paths appearing in the city centre.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Bristol Trails Group: forest ride day, March 20

The HooF campaigners in the Forest of Dean are organising a national "come out and enjoy the forest" event today, March 20, where they want everyone to come out and do something in their local forest.

We can't discuss what we plan to do in the forest that night, except that our slogan "Fuck in the forest, not with the Forest" will come into play. Instead here are some pictures of the Bristol Trails Group's work. They plan to get out and get muddy.
Here is one of the trails, built by the cyclists themselves, in 50 Acre Wood, FC land.
And here's a bit in Ashton Court.

While we obviously don't condone such daytime activities, the trails can be good for discrete activities in darkness, and for us mobile vendors of sex accessories, the woodlands close to the city are quite profitable. Our new line is the "George Osborne" toy. It hurts, but while it hurts you in a squeaky voice it tells you it's for your own good.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Cycling City: pavements and 20 mph zones

Milverton Gardens, off Ashley Hill. Jon R's constituency. Do you think these voters will be supportive of the cycle city plans? we suspect not.

On the far side of the road, there's not much pavement, and someone must have bashed the (defunct) sign. Will the council pay for the damage? we suspect not. On this side, the ford focus CV05WVC has managed to get its entire bodywork off road, so it will be safe from damage provided nobody is walking nearby. This is why we want to ban pushchairs from our pavements unless the parents have third party insurance.

Fortunately, there is no bike parking to take away space from motorists, which as Councillor Gollop points out, is a key reason for the Cycling City program's failure.

What they have done, though, is dropped the speed limit to 20 mph. The goal here, "supposedly" was to make it safer for pedestrians and cyclists. The ABD oppose it because, they claim that it will force drivers to look at their speedometers all the time. This is a bogus argument, because the same rule would apply to 30 and 70 limits, yet they don't complain about that. It's also bogus because the ABD don't realise that busy people are too busy texting to look up at road, let alone the speedo.

No, the real issue with 20 mph zones is this: it slows down people in a hurry just as much as if there was a bicycle in front. It may be designed to make people on the bicycle feel safer, but even there are only one or two bicycles an hour going up or down this road, it slows everyone down all the time, so imposing external costs on the entire city. It may not be explicitly removing road space, but it is removing fast road space, which is the real problem

One or two people are bold enough to fight back. As our van was up on the pavement we caught one who is best appreciated in the sound of this video.

You can hear the motorbike engine revving up as they go past the slow-moving cars, cars forced to slow down by anti-car speed limits. You can also hear the 4x4 revving its diesel engine as it slowly accelerates out of the 20 mph zone, as the 30 mph sign is in sight. And you know the rule of speed signs: if you can see a faster one in the distance you can speed up to it. It's not clear this car is doing over 20, it may just be working overhard in a low gear. This is a steepish hill.

We thought this was one of those videos was going be something we could resell to the Daily Mail "how a 20mph zone forced this motorbike into a head on collision with a 4x4", and so provide a compelling argument against more 20 mph zones in the city. But the motorbike eventually noticed the vehicle coming up the hill and pulled in.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Keeping clear

Keep clear signs up on this corner, which YIB4199 carefully follow, by making full use of this lovely under-utilised bit of pavement.

We are lucky that the residents of Clifton managed to stop their lovely streets, such as here, Richmond Mews, being ruined by bike parks. This is one part of the city that successfully fought back against the Cycling City program.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

More biggerer and betterer.

Bristol is often referred to by many ex Londoners as being like a "little London". While we can appreciate the comparison we at Bristol Traffic know that with the proper building of new bigger wider roads to allow more cars into the city it won't be long before Bristol becomes bigger and better than London. Better because we won't leave our motorways unfinished on the outskirts of the city. Ours will penetrate right into the heart of the city centre creating a vibrant city environment that everywhere else in the world could only dream of. After all we already know that car drivers are the only people who ever spend money in cities and allowing anyone else to get in their way is a sure way to help businesses lose trade.

We have a good start already in the M32 but there's more work to be done if our vision of the future is to come to fruition.

Here as a reminder of why the plan must be seen through is a short film by a young man highlighting where London failed to match up to our vision.

cycling city: removing pavement space from motorists

One thing that Cllr Gollop -the Official Bristol Traffic approved councillor - raised in his Bikelash speech is the space taken from important road users by cycling facilities. What's been taken away? Pavement parking opportunities

This pickup, Y66TAN, whose passenger is in buying something at Quiznos on Stapelton Road is forced to carefully squeeze between the new bike racks and the railings on the other side.

Those are the railings of the large empty car park for both Quizno's and the supermarket. Yes, the pickup could have driven in there, but that would have taken more time, and the thing about important people is this: they are in a hurry, and their time is more valuable than pedestrians, cyclists or bus passengers. After all, these are the slow ways to get around. Nobody in a hurry would use them.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The bikelash has arrived!

Over in New York, there's a fantastic power struggle going on, as important politicians fight troublemaking cyclists, to try and get a segregated bike path removed. There's a good summary online, by the economist John Cassidy. Sadly he, gets criticised not just by the usual activists, but by other economists. That worries us. If the people we trust to run the banks and get the global economy out of the mess the banks and the economists got it into can't even agree on how bad bicycles are for a city, well, it's not a good start. How can they come with a plan for the global economy that works if they can't even agree that bicycles and pedestrians don't belong in modern cities.

Here in Bristol, Cllr Gollop is one person who has taken a public stance, denouncing the Cycling City program for spending money, not increasing the number of cyclists they promised, and for taking away road space from us, the important people.:
"The Cycling City initiative brought in match-funding which has delivered new cycling routes but these have largely been achieved at the expense of the majority of road users - by reducing road space or capacity.

This is why Cllr -soon to be Mayor- Gollop is in the lead for the 2010 Bristol Traffic "councillor of the year" award. He's our kind of councillor.

Some of the cycling troublemakers have been asking "where are all the bits of road that Cllr Glossop said had been taken away for bicycles". That's tough -we had to nip out and get one of those cycle bristol maps and do some research.
  1. Bike lanes? Same as ever: short stay parking.
  2. Keep clear zones at school? Same as ever, though some yellow lines are going in -lines we can't blame on the bicycles.
  3. The Kingsdown RPZ? The locals voted it for it so they'd have the opportunity to park after going for a drive. Selfish actions by inner city troublemakers, but not cycling-city work.
  4. Bike Parking? Yes, this has taken space away, something to cover later.
  5. 20 mph zones? A topic for another day.
What about the dedicated routes? In the city, the Farm Pub Path (tm) and the Eastville Park to UWE route all go through parks. We'd like roads there, so you could say it's a wasted opportunity, but it's not really taking up space. For economists, that's "opportunity cost", what you could have done with the money instead. Still, every segregated bike path is a bus route in waiting, as we and West of England Partnership say. As for the Hartcliffe way route -we've found that provides extra parking.

It seems to us, the things that have got worse over the cycling city timescale then are
  • The removal of paveparking opportunities
  • The 20 mph zone
  • The increased cost of driving
  • The showcase bus routes.
None of the cycling facilities have directly taken away any roadspace from cars.

What then was Cllr Glossop trying to say -what did he really mean? He meant this
To us, the important people of the city, the Cycling City program is a failure because the number of people on bicycles and hence in our way has increased.

It doesn't matter that no direct road space has been taken away in the inner city apart from eight paid parking spaces --the mere presence of bicycles slows us down. The fact that these people pay nothing while the cost of driving continually increases makes us even more angry.
This is of course the Daily Mail commenter line, but everyone is afraid to come out and say it. Not us, not John Cassidy -and not a lot of Evening Post commenters, but they don't make the proper economic argument. We shall.

Every bicycle holds up traffic, so while the private costs of a bicycle are low, the external cost is high. A bicycle occupying a whole lane takes up as much space as a car -and because it's going at half the speed, it slows down the cars behind it more than a single car would. The congestion cost of a bicycle is therefore higher than that of a motor car!

That's the real issue with the Cycling City. Not the infrastructure, not just the parking -taking away our pavements. It's the increase in bicycles on what the cycle planners call the key cycle routes to the city, but for which we have a different name: the main roads.

We've been saying this since 2008. Us, on our own, sometimes with help a couple of times a week from the niche papers the Evening Post and the Daily Mail. The BBC, they're on our side with Top Gear, but that's relegated to BBC2 now, and in their news broadcasts they don't often have people that speak our language. Even the AA, the RAC and the Association of British Drivers don't come out and spell out the real costs that cycling imposes on our city. As far as politics goes, we have Glossop and the Ministers Hammond and Pickles on our side -but the only party that wants to ban bicycles from important roads was the UK Independence Party. Nobody else speaks our language.

This is changing. Welcome to the bikelash.

[For anyone wishing to congratulate the councillor, his contact details are online. Why not email him and congratulate him for being on our side!]

Monday, 14 March 2011

GPS: the rest of the press catch up

There's a lot of fuss in the press about a new paper arguing that Satellite Navigation, in the form of the US GPS system, ex-Soviet GLONASS and the EU Galileo system are all vulnerable to failure, and that the country now depends on them working.

This doesn't surprise us, because we made this claim back in 2001, in our article "BMW - No Joy: GPS is a SPOF", using Volpe 2001 as the reference paper. We pointed out that BMW made naive or misleading comments about the reliability of GPS, helping to retain an unrealistic expectation of the failure modes of a tool designed to prosecute a conventional war or the opening exchange of a nuclear war rather than help you get home in time.

We've never mentioned it, but we did get a reply from the ASA on the 29 of November 2009 -a paper one- in which they stated that:
  1. We were the only people that complained.
  2. It was meant to be metaphor, and therefore the fact that the failure of GPS could cause widescale destruction to the national transportation infrastructure was unimportant.
This is somewhat disappointing. The Bristol Traffic project was seventeen months ahead of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and yet the ASA dismissed us because we were the only people in the country who knew what they were talking about. The fact that we were the only organisation to complain is a sign that we are more competent than the rest of the national media, not some daft troublemakers.


Advance Stop Lanes, or ASLs, are a waste of space.

They are a sop to cyclists, who, we read, are an articulate and vociferous minority.

To the general motoring public, however, they are a waste of good road space. They increase the length of our traffic jams, and contribute substantially to our waiting times at traffic lights. They lessen the length of our 'platoons' that can get through on a green, yellow or red light. They are rubbish.

Which is why we're heartened to see that the two major providers of rubbish disposal in our great city are fiercely competing to get rid of this wasted space.

SITA have the inside, VIRIDOR have the outside. Between them they have the wasted space covered.

And look, not a tax-doging cyclist in sight.

So much for re-cycling.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Optimising the School Run

Interesting scene here, not one we've noticed before.

This the Cotham Hill/St Michaels Hill mini roundabout, one of the high points of the city, and wonderfully representative. This is an excellent example of how the removal of traffic lights permits an efficient traffic flow.

But today, cars aren't exiting Cotham Hill. At 0:10 you can see why. The parent on the school run has opted not to pull over into the cycle lane, or even drive to keep-clear area in front of the school. Instead they just stop at the top of the road, let the kid out, a child who can then safely walk to the traffic island, and then over one more lane before reaching a zebra crossing, then get to school. The parent can get to their destination without any detour, without even struggling to get their car out of the bike lane and into the main car lane.

This action encourages physical activity in the child, and reduces congestion near the school. It also enable the child to cross the road safely. At 0:18-0:20 you can hear one of the vehicles behind expressing their concerns over this action, by sounding the horn. But if they were on the school run, why not let their kid out at the same time?

Saturday, 12 March 2011

A dooring post mortem

Our reporter who works in A&E in the city is able to pick up news of interest, today we have a video from someone who unexpectedly came to visit them.

Leigh Road in Clifton, a quiet but narrow road and slightly uphill, the tax dodger is doing under 10 mph by our estimate. Watch the red car coming up on the left at about 15 seconds in. At 0:19 you can see the door opening and hear our unexpected reporter being surprised by the event.

The normal advice given to cyclists for road safety is "stay out of the door zone", which we, the road tax payers object to as it means "stay in the way of important people". This video shows another issue. A road like this, there is no position a cyclist can take that is out the door zone, because if they are far enough away from the left side to avoid a risk from a car there, they are in range of the other side. This is despite the parked cars doing their best to avoid such problems by parking on the pavement wherever possible.

The only solution which we can see here is to ban bicycles from such high-risks roads. For their own safety. We shall be writing to Councillor Glossop -the official Bristol Traffic Councillor- for their support.

Friday, 11 March 2011

Job creation scheme

If they fix things, they know how to break them.

What better way to earn revenue as a Highway Maintenance contractor than parking up on the pavement on a double-yellow lined corner, such as here Ashley Parade in St Werbugh's. At least if the lorry KM10NJN does any damage to the pavement, they'll be in a position to fix it

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Hello to Van Hire Bristol!

A quick hello to Van Hire Bristol who added a comment to our co-existence post, the one that showed a white van turning into Cotham Hill without bothering to look, because the driver knew that mostly only people on bicycles come down the hill, and any pedestrians crossing at that point are students and therefore liabilities on the state.

Whoever it was that posted the comment made some well informed comments showing their mastery of the the English language, and their complete failure to read the bit where we warn that anyone posting adverts will be publicly criticised, along with ignorance of the nofollow attribute hence the fact that adding comments to a high page-ranked site like ours does nothing for their own ranking:
Hey I like the post very much. This is really a very good post with very good information.

Thanks a lot for sharing the post very much. You know what I like the title of video very much which insist to watch the video to me. :)

Keep sharing such stuffs.

Well, we don't care whether you like the title or whether you think it's a really good post with very good information, and we shall keep sharing such stuffs without being asked. What we want to know is this? Is the white van YB06BDO one of the Van Hire Bristol fleet?

Furthermore, if we rent a van from you:
  1. Does it automatically come with pre-insurance cover for running over bicycles and pedestrians?
  2. Will you be upset if comes back with scratches and blood on the bumper?
  3. Does it have a tow bar to provide audible feedback when reverse parking (crunching sounds)
  4. What driver training will you provide showing us how to drive and park such vehicles, especially while texting?
Regarding the comment itself, a few more questions
  • Did you actually pay somebody to write such an atrociously badly written comment?
  • What did they promise in return? 
  • Did they read the warning notice before they commented, and did they understand the consequences of their action, namely that they consented to have your site discussed in a posting all of its own?
  • How does it feel to have a web page making fun of you (as promised in the comment form) come back ahead of you in searches?
  • Given that some people may view the video as portraying a mildly negative opinion of white vans in the city -despite our own view that they are an essential part of the national economy- do you feel that it is wise to have your brand associated with such incidents?
  • Did you ask the person who promised to boost your page to read the pages first? Will you request this in future?
  • Have you asked your outsourced SEO agent about nofollow tags and the fact that they mean that none of our google pagerank (5) transfers to yours (0) -and that the comments have at best no effect whatsoever?
  • Are you aware that because Google own blogspot, there is the possibility that at worst they will use the URLs in postings downgraded as spam to actually penalise such sites in their search engine?
  • Have you a way of asking for your money back?
Remember, the Bristol Traffic project is a data gathering and datamining organisation that views Google and Yahoo! as strategic partners; Game Theory  and Graph Theory key branches of mathematics to model traffic movement around cities. We do not yet see any value in strategic or tactical alliances with Van Hire Bristol, whoever you are, so will be forced to block any further attempts to add comments to our site.

Thank you for your participation in the Bristol Traffic Project.


Some of the cyclists think that if there are enough of them on our roads the rest of society will suddenly welcome them, it will suddenly become safer, and that everyone will happily dance around singing Dutch songs. Well, we have some bad news there

The increase in the number of people cycling, combined with the rises in petrol's costs, merely makes us angrier and more resentful

It's not enough they aren't paying to use the roads, they hold us up. The more bicycles, the more we get held up. We can experiment with this by secretly instrumenting cyclists and then collecting the videos, and seeing if conflict increases or decreases over time.

Here we see white van YB06BDO being held up by a bicycle as it turns into Cotham Hill from Aberdeen Road. It stops. What does the rider have to complain about? At least this driver wasn't on the phone.

He stopped, polite discussion followed. None of this road-rage stuff. A friendly city. Why do they complain so?

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Keeping clear

Here again are the benefits of Cliftonwood life: considerate neighbours. See how well P731EBD and WN56XCJ are staying off the bit of Goldney Road marked 'KEEP CLEAR'.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

The BBC: we know they are on our side

Lot's of fuss yesterday about whether the Cycle City program achieved its goals, with an oddly pro-bicycle program on the radio, while in print our opinions get covered, at least by the conservative party:
"Whilst we recognise the merits of promoting cycling as a leisure activity for the individual - delivering personal health benefits and helping to improve the environment for all - this form of travel is unlikely in the near future to be a major means of commuting.
We ourselves aren't convinced that it should be encouraged as a leisure activity if it slows down important people -and the same goes for walking. There could be designated "leisure areas" -call them parks- to which people could drive and try walking and cycling before driving home.

Like we say, we were a bit disappointed by the radio program, as it viewed the fact that the number of cyclists on the road to meet the ambitious goals of the city as "a failure". The fact that there are more now than ever before is what constitutes the failure in our eyes. It has legitimised cycling in some parts of the community.

We are surprised therefore that the BBC radio took such a pro cycling stance in the radio program, because they are uusally on our side. Top-Gear, Horizon documenting car crashes safety improvements without discussing the fact that some of the most expensive cars on sale have the worst pedestrian safety scores.

They are on our side for the following reason: they are important, so they drive to work. That means not stopping for anyone even walking a bicycle over a zebra crossing, here on Whiteladies Road, just by the BBC offices.

Note however, the driver of F59XHW doesn't drive down the bus lane before the left turn, it always indicate before turning. We would drive down the lane and then turn without indicating, and we think Jeremy Clarkson would too. Signalling communicates intent to the opposition.

The school run in St Werburgh's

Over abroad, they are going on about Cargo Bikes that take kids to school.

In Bristol, we have these things called Cars for that in most of the city.

It is only in St Werburgh's that the locals revert to pedestrian version of the cargo bike -the wheelbarrow. The kids seem happy -but where are their helmets?

Monday, 7 March 2011

The AA driving school: for the road ahead

The AA driving school car GL60JHH says "for the road ahead" on the back of it.

Technically, up here in Northville, it should say "For the road and half the pavement ahead"
But there probably isn't room for that.

We hope the AA will be on our side, resisting government plans to fine people for parking on the pavement. It's in their interest, not just because increased car ownership increases their breakdown revenue fees, but because their driving school instructors clearly depend on the right too.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

The "improved" Southwell Street Shared Space

There have -apparently- been complaints about this shared space. We don't know who, we don't see anything wrong with it except sometimes people get in the way of where we want to drive or park.

Whoever is complaining clearly must be walking or cycling, so not contributing to the national economy,
Yet they want things "improved". What improvements will help us? None.
Southwell street represents all that is inner Bristol. A road on a hill, old houses, the pavements turned into parking and barrier in the way to discourage people from walking and cycling. To attempt to change this is not just an attack on the hospital, it is attack on modern British society!

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Keeping the pavement free of bicycles

Ashley down road is one of the few roads with signs warning bicycles that they will be fined if they cycle on the pavement, so they should stay on the road.

Clearly that wasn't enough instead the road has been dug up with space for pedestrians to the side, and a sign direction the pedestrians around the large hole.
For the cyclists, there is double parked van for them to run into.

Friday, 4 March 2011

YA55VDY does the 'croft

This is lovely, a coming together of our favourite subjects

The Medina Dairies delivery van, YA55VDY, parked over the stokes croft "cycle lane", just up from the post office van and another white van. Keeping the croft free of tax-dodgers, and bringing Yoghurt-related produce to paying customers

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Clifton Downer

Those Bristol roving traffic wardens really are a nuisance. They've taken to visiting places without any yellow lines. Luckily for WV56HSF they haven't yet been to Pembroke Vale, but we're sure it's only a matter of time before they do.

We think it's fine when they pick on the Redland Mums, after all if you live outside the catchment area of a school, but manage to get your child into it, you can't be expected to fully understand the etiquette attached to driving and parking in the 'hood.

But over here in Clifton, we pay proper road tax, and like to send our kids to public schools. We all have cars, and nobody important walks in our streets. Yes, poor people, the blind and the elderly may have to use pavements and take trains, but we're far too wealthy to worry about them. Which is why we're miffed that P32OSX and AK55BFY have been ticketed for obstructing dropped kerbs.

It appears that Bristol City Council (who seem to think they own the pavements) want to persecute us for simply parking where it's most convenient.

Of course, parking fines are nothing to the good residents of Clifton. So we'll just carry on.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Southwell Street: Bristol's Shared Space

Just a few photos here to celebrate Southwell St, by the St Michael's Hill hospital. What was once a road has been successfully turned by the BRI into a useful hospital facility, with lots of staff parking.

The presence of paving stones under the cars above has created some tension with the residents association, especially as no evidence has been found proving the pavement was "given" to the hospital. We say there's nowhere else to park.
We also understand why blocking the pavement and forcing pedestrians onto the road was the right thing to do. It is for their own safety.
Furthermore, painting a little sign of someone walking along what was once a pavement makes them feel grateful -and ensures that if they do get hit by a car and were walking anywhere else, well, they didn't follow the signs.
Like we said, we have heard rumours of change here. We now have the documents and some of the emails -and very interesting they are too.

But before publishing them, consider this: this road will be the first sight of the city for all children born in this hospital. To try and make it friendly to pedestrians and cyclists would be an attempt to redefine our city, not just for the adults, but for these newborn. Therefore we want to be the first to say that we are glad that the hospital is attempting to do the least it can get away with, namely painting the bits where pedestrians are meant to walk in more solid colours. We could call them "walking superhighways".

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Safe passing

A lot of people on their bicycles complain about being passed badly by cars. Yet in Bristol, many of us, even though we are important -and show it by driving big cars- still pass our fellow citizens safely, even when they are poor and can only afford bicycles. Here is an example on Lower Maudlin Street, heading towards the BRI. This is one-way, with a contraflow for tax-dodgers heading downhill.

As you can see the Important Pickup moves safely into the contraflow to pass the bicycle, and then cuts left, so giving the bicycle room to share the ASL with them.

Isn't that generous?