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'Mini Holland' bid could bring bike boom to Enfield
Enfield could be in line for a mammoth cycling investment as the competition for a share of £100million reaches its final stages.
If successful, the borough could become a cycling haven, with significant alterations to Enfield Town and Edmonton Green railway stations and a cycle superhighway along the A1010 among proposals.
Enfield Borough Council has reached the last eight of the competition and the final proposals are due to be handed in by the end of November, with the top four bids receiving a share of the prize pot, provided by the Mayor of London.
Such potential investment has excited cycling groups. Co-founder of the Edmonton Cycle Club Dave Skinner said: “This would be a quantum leap for Enfield.
"This is much more than about bikes, it will open up the borough. It is about a massive integration of the community.”
The proposed cycle superhighway would span the entire borough from the M25 to Haringey and link up with the existing superhighway on the A10.
A large number of cycle greenways would be installed borough-wide with many existing routes receiving upgrades. Cycle ‘hubs’ will also be created as a community gathering point for cyclists.
The development could help deliver the council’s ambition to increase the number of cycle journeys tenfold.
Councillor Chris Bond, cabinet member for environment, said: “It would be brilliant if we won.
"It is a very important issue and we want to get as many people, young and old, on bikes as possible.”
The proposals also aim to make roads safer for cyclists by increasing the number of safe crossing points and installing a new 'Dutch' roundabout, which separates cars and bikes, outside Edmonton Green station.
Access to the centre Enfield Town would also be improved by replacing the zigzag route from the station with a direct path by setting back the building line in Southbury Road.
Schemes such as Dr Bike, run by Cycle Confident and subsidised by the council, help cyclists maintain their bikes. This and other services including cycling training sessions would also benefit from the Mini Holland prize.
Experienced cyclist Mr Skinner, 59, is also involved in such programmes and believes a successful bid can only improve riders' confidence.
He added: “A lot of people would like to do more with their bikes. People need to feel less vulnerable.”
To help boost the borough’s claim the council is considering organising a cycle convoy to deliver the bid to central London on deadline day.
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