London fails to feature in top 20 bike friendly cities, despite £913m cycling plans

The £913m vision included extensive Dutch-style segregated cycle ways and a 15-mile 'Crossrail for the bicycle'

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The Independent Online

London has failed to feature in an index of the top 20 most bike-friendly cities, despite announcing near-billion pound plans in March to revolutionise cycling in the city.

The £913m vision included extensive Dutch-style segregated cycle ways and a 15-mile "Crossrail for the bicycle", as well as the redrawing of dangerous junctions.

The Copenhagenize index of bicycle-friendly cities ranked 122 cities for the 2015 index, and London failed to feature in the top 20 for the second time in four years.

The last time London featured in the index was 2011, when the city placed 16th out of 80 cities.

Copenhagenize said on the index website: "The Copenhagenize Index gives cities marks for their efforts towards reestablishing the bicycle as a feasible, accepted and practical form of transport.

"This year, we really honed in on the metropolitan cities of the world, those with a regional population over 600,000.

"We work with cities around the world and we wanted to be able to give them a score in order to determine the best and most effective method for re-establishing the bicycle on the urban landscape."

When Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, unveiled the plans in March he said: "The ultimate symbol of how the urban motorway tore up our cities will become the ultimate symbol of how we are claiming central London for the bike."

"Cycling will be treated not as niche [but] what it is: an integral part of the transport network."

Chris Boardman, the Olympic gold medallist credited with kick-starting Britain’s bike boom, called the plans "the most ambitious cycling development and promotion plan in the UK in living memory, perhaps ever."

Copenhagen came was crowned the most bicycle-friendly city in the index for the first time, overtaking 2011 and 2013 index-topping Amsterdam, which placed second.

Utrecht placed third and Republic of Ireland capital Dublin placed 15th, down from 11th in 2013.

Cities are marked across 13 categories, including bicycle culture, facilities and urban planning.

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