I should be able to commute by bike and not worry
27 August, 2021
Dr Marta Krawiec
• I WAS very saddened to hear about the death of Dr Marta Krawiec as she cycled through Camden to work.
It is outrageous that in 2021 we are not providing safe infrastructure for pedestrians and cyclists in our borough. Acceptance of entirely preventable deaths is deeply disappointing.
I feel immensely proud and lucky to live, work, and raise children, in such a diverse part of London. However, Camden roads are not inclusive.
We should be designing infrastructure for the most vulnerable road users: children, older people, those with mobility and sensory difficulties. This is not happening currently.
If we continue to prioritise “motorists” we will see more people killed. I don’t think this is ok.
I welcome all investment in “active travel”, for example the Haverstock Hill proposal. It is currently difficult to cycle safely with children from Kentish Town west to Swiss Cottage. The Haverstock Hill improvements would help.
In planning highway infrastructure the weakest and slowest person rather than strongest and fastest road user should be prioritised.
Camden has made great strides forward in the past 18 months. The logistics of wanting fewer people on public transport mean we need more people commuting actively.
To make cycling truly accessible and inclusive we need priority paths that are designed ahead of considering motorist needs.
When I cycle in unsegregated areas of fast-moving traffic I find it frightening. This is surely not fair. I should be able to commute by bike and not worry.
The benefits of active travel are multiple: less obesity, less air pollution, increased fitness and decreased loneliness. Now more than ever we need to support these aims.
DR EMMA STOCKTON, NW5
Consultant at Great Ormond Street Hospital