A UK-first “CYCLOPS” junction, which is optimised for safer cycling and walking, is now fully open in Hulme.
The “Cycle Optimised Protected Signals” junction fully segregates cyclists from general traffic, improving safety for all road users. Bicycles approach from four ‘arms’, converging onto a cycle track which completely encircles the junction, allowing bicycles to make a right turn while being protected from traffic - and to complete the manoeuvre in one movement, dependent on signal timings.
The opening of the CYCLOPS is the latest milestone in the construction of the £13.4m Manchester to Chorlton cycling and walking route, with the first phase of the project now completed. Chorlton Road forms the northern section of the route, connecting Brooks Bar junction to off-road cycle tracks at Chester Road roundabout, which lead into the city centre.
Segregated cycle lanes have been created on Chorlton Road, running from Chester Road to Stretford Road. Work is now set to move on to the section of Chorlton Road running between Moss Lane East and Stretford Road.
Manchester City Council's Executive Member for the Environment, Planning and Transport, Councillor Angeliki Stogia, said: “The CYCLOPS junction maximises opportunities for safer cycling and walking in this area, while making the performance of the junction more efficient for all road users. As we gradually welcome Mancunians back to their city centre, we’re really looking forward to seeing this trailblazing feature becoming a landmark part of what is a well-used commuter route.
“This UK-first junction is a symbol of our desire to create permanent, high-quality cycling and walking infrastructure, which will support the long-term shift to active travel that we want to see right across the city.
"And it is only the latest milestone in our ambitious plans to invest in a network of safe routes for people travelling on foot or by bike. We're continuing to move forward with our £79m pipeline of projects, which will enable more people across the city to make the switch to walking and cycling for their everyday journeys.”
Chris Boardman, cycling and walking commissioner for Greater Manchester said, “Crossing busy junctions on foot or by bike can be a complicated and scary experience and is often a huge barrier for people travelling by foot or bike, and having to navigate a number of these can make them opt for the car.
"This junction design will make journeys easier and smoother for those doing their bit by cycling or walking, without impacting negatively on any other modes. The design is simply genius and I’m not surprised to see other places already adopting the approach."