Innovation in urban street design usually happens in the metropolis, but sleepy Alsager in Cheshire has scooped the Opec-sponsored Drive Award for promotion of vehicular transport.
The winning entry was an unassuming barrier across a pathway between two housing estates. According to the citation this barrier meets our aims of encouraging car use in the small-town environment by making it difficult or impossible to use the shortcut for cycling to the town centre.
Presenting the award Sheik Ihatew Omen pointed out that the design had the additional benefit of stopping child buggies and shopping trollies from passing, thus encouraging the use of cars by young families on the estate.
In a statement issued today by Cheshire East, a spokesperson for the Transport Development Unit welcomed the award and emphasised that the Council was looking at a number of further initiatives to reduce cycling in Alsager:
Getting recognition like this is always gratifying, but we will never become complacent until our target of zero non-automotive journey share is achieved. There is still work to be done.