A blog about cars in Aberdeen.

This is a blog about cars in Aberdeen because most people aspire to the convenience of personal motor transport, pay dearly for the privilege, provide much employment, contribute greatly in taxes, and then people expect them to ‘leave the car at home’, while their money is spent creating cycle lanes and the like for freeloading cyclists.

Thursday 26 May 2011

Worrying Statistics

We read with horror, disbelief, shock and fear that pedal-cycle numbers are on the sharp increase in Aberdeen. Latest figures from vegetarian war-on-the-motorist support group Aberdeen Cycle Forum show that year on year cycling in Aberdeen has increased by 18%.

Somebody once said that the misunderstanding of exponential growth is one of society's greatest problems, so let us spell that out for you...

You might be unconcerned: "A growth of 18% on top of what is a very low figure anyway need hardly trouble the busy and superior drivers of Aberdeen Cars" - we hear you say. But, an 18% year on year growth leads to a doubling period of just 4 years. Can you imagine? Double the amount of cyclists on our streets by 2015. And double that again by 2019. At this rate, the amount of cycling in Aberdeen "City and Shire" will reach and maybe even surpass our government's stated target of 10% of journeys in Scotland to be undertaken by bike by 2020. And to think, in our complacency the drivers of Aberdeen Cars once labeled this 10% target far-fetched and unrealistic, choosing instead to look forward to the certainty that zero-emission motor transport will be ubiquitous by the time the Aberdeen bypass opens in 2012.

We have been asleep at the wheel (not just taking photos from behind it) and have allowed the grass to grow beneath our tyres - our local press reports that motor traffic on our major city routes is at its lowest for years and years. In some cases motor traffic levels have dropped to a paltry volume not seen since 1995. Frightening - it is as if the ground has opened up beneath our sump-pans.

And into this vacuum the cyclists have swarmed like vermin. We think this sends out all the wrong messages about Aberdeen "City and Shire": It says we are a city and region that does not value its ability to buy really nice cars; it says we are a city that couldn't care less about economic growth. What with all those people cycling around Aberdeen these days rather than use their lovely big cars, the place is looking a bit like DSS-land or StudentVille or something.

That's why it's vital that we do everything we can to fight back - to support the planned road improvements which will draw more drivers in more cars into the heart of the city centre and park in the lovely new underground car park which the City Gardens Project has planned for us adjacent to our favourite piece of urban infrastructure - the Denburn Dual Carriageway. The measures which will support this are the Berryden Corridor Improvements, the Aberdeen Bypass, the Haudagain Improvements and our continued resistance to the pedestrianisation of Union Street.

But most importantly, it is vital that we do everything we can to "Save the Denburn Dual Carriageway!" Join our popular common-sense campaign to put roads and road planning and road users at the heart of city planning - where we belong! ('like' us on FaceBook, 'follow' us on Twitter)

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