Isn’t Rue Sigefroi a nicer place to be now? To walk, to hang out, to shop, to cycle; to be. And we have the lovely new lift for those down there or those coming from the north, no longer the choice between a brutal climb or a longer ride round to the Grund lift. And the views! Tourists will love it.
I’ll tell you what else they’ll love. The cycle path due to dangle under Pont Adolphe, that’s what. And so must we, I suppose, having been originally (and extraordinarily) told that they’d be no cycle path at all. And those of us who point out that steep ramps and detours and whatnot are easier for motorised transport than they are for people are just moaning minnies. Those of us who wonder what will happen to the pampered Luxembourgish cyclist when he or she gets ejected from it the wrong side of a nasty junction and then onto that lane on avenue de la Liberté just don’t understand anything. Those of us who wonder, once again, how the car came to be King in an environment so clearly unsuited to it are perhaps luddites. Those of us who wonder how many tourists will be arriving to marvel below the bridge and block its bike path when the transport plan reaches its natural zenith and the entire city is flattened for a giant car park are simply morons who don’t understand that car parking is more important than anything else.
Perhaps I am wrong and that isn’t the idea. Maybe the dystopian future of a bleak and ruined Luxembourg will come via different means. If, for example, the massive excavations undertaken to ensure the whole city has car parking for 6 levels below it will render the surface unstable and uninhabitable.
We love sexy great big projects like lifts and trams and bridges. But more than those, the city needs humble application of tried and tested simple and cheap infrastructure. Clean lines of safely segregated cycle paths. Junctions that non-motorised traffic can cross quickly and safely, uninhibited by absurd byzantine paths around free-leaking motor vehicle jams. Pavements that don’t have cars and vans and buses on them. Less parking. Once it’s easy and safe to walk or cycle, motorised traffic is reduced. This benefits everyone, including motorists. If anyone should be lobbying for cycle infrastructure, in fact, it’s the car driver.
Isn’t Rue Sigefroi a nicer place to be now? Do the simple stuff, and join it all up and it will happen – the dream of fewer cars clogging up and ruining a beautiful city.
Isn’t Rue Sigefroi a nicer place to be now? At last the message is getting through… what’s that? They are doing what on the red bridge? I’ll just go and bang my head against that wall.
Oh dear: I can’t get to it. There’s a car parked in the way.