The Great West Road or A4 has a cycle lane either side of it. Unfortunately, these are some of the most neglected and poorly designed cycle lanes in London. The cycle lane along the westbound carriageway is often obstructed by overhanging tree branches that the council has seen fit to ignore, and each cycle lane either side of the A4 dual carriageway will typically end suddenly, confusing cyclists and motorists alike.
This is an image taken yesterday on the eastbound side at the junction of the Great West Road and Ealing Road. On the left you can see the elevated section of the M4. To the right is Ealing Road.
Here, you can be thrown into oncoming traffic if you’re heading west or, if you’re travelling east, you can take your chances on the carriageway. The cycle lane itself actually ends just past the Esso service station and although this is a signalized junction, there is nothing to inform cyclists when it’s safe to cross. Anyone travelling east… well, it’s not clear if they’re supposed to use the carriageway with the rest of the traffic or ride along the pavement and wait for a gap in the traversing traffic. At what point does one join the carriageway? Not even that is clear.
This is one of the worst examples of cycling infrastructure I’ve seen. In fact, the London Borough of Hounslow is one of the least cycle friendly parts of London. Whoever designed this travesty should be arrested for wasting council money on such a pointless cycle lane and putting cyclists’ lives in danger.
The cycle lanes along the A4 Great West Road are the responsibility of Transport for London (TfL), who thus far, have neglected cycling facilities in West London and have, instead, focussed their attentions on routes to and from South and East London.
Hounslow Cycling Campaign has been asking for improvements to other junctions, which appear to have fallen on deaf ears.
TfL, sort it out!