Ignitr is a software engineering firm working in the financial services sector and are based in Canary Wharf.
In a detailed and well-researched response to the Transport for London consultation, Head of communications and media Angus MacDonald explained:
‘Half of ignitr’s employees cycle to work, reflecting the business’s strong affinity with cycling (we sponsor of the Nocturne, Bec Hill Climb and Revolution series). Unfortunately this makes us something of an outlier in the London employment landscape and what the figures don’t indicate is the large number of our employees’ associates, family and friends who haven’t taken up cycling due to feeling unsafe travelling around London’s streets on a bicycle.
‘We are keen to see infrastructure in place that ensures our employees can travel safely around London by bicycle given the considerable health and wellbeing benefits associated with cycling for employees and employers (Hartog, Boogaard, Nijland and Hoek, 2010).
‘We also see cycling as an important means of addressing the issue of air pollution given London’s failure to meet national air quality standards for particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide (Air pollution in London, Greater London Authority) and the wider global issue of climate change. These issues points to a real need to get people switching to less polluting modes of transport and cycling provides one of a range of solutions that should be actively encouraged.
‘London has seen a healthy rise in the number of Londoners using cycling as a mode of transport over the last ten years (Office of National Statistics, 2014). Unfortunately this growth trend is likely to plateau without substantial changes to the city’s transport infrastructure.
‘What we see as as a key obstacle to further growth in cycling in London is tackling the issue of safety (or lack thereof) associated with cycling, a view that is supported by Transport for London research (Transport for London, 2014a, P 9). The introduction of segregated cycling lanes provides an important step in addressing the issue of cyclist’s safety and fuelling the next wave of growth.
‘The introduction of the North-South and East-West Cycle Superhighways also provides an important means of addressing historical imbalances in the city’s investment in transport infrastructure in the post World War II era. Whilst there will be some negative impact on motorists, Transport for London’s modelling (Transport for London, 2014b) forecasts the impact is small and is more than counterbalanced by the growth in cyclists on both the North-South and East-West routes.
‘Finally, ignitr like many growing companies is competing for talent not just in London but across Europe and the world. We need London to be a city that is not simply an economic powerhouse but is also somewhere people want to live and we feel cycling is an important component in enabling the city to become a more attractive and livable city.
‘Crossrail for Bikes’ is, on balance, great for our business and for London. Please make sure these plans are delivered, without delay.
Do the Health Benefits of Cycling Outweigh the Risks?, Jeroen Johan de Hartog, Hanna Boogaard, Hans Nijland and Gerard Hoek, Environmental Health Perspectives.
Air pollution in London, Greater London Authority
London residents cycling to work doubles in 10 years, Office of National Statistics 2014
Cycle Safety Action Plan, Transport for London 2014a
Traffic modelling data released for the Mayor’s East-West & North-South Cycle Superhighways, Transport for London 2014b