Clarkehouse Road is a popular route for cycling into Sheffield and it has a painted cycle lane which should provide at least a small amount of clear space. Unfortunately the council allows this cycle lane to be used as free car parking except at peak times, and even then it is still abused making it largely useless.
There is no need to use this road space for parking. There is a multi-story car park with 702 spaces next to the Royal Hallamshire hospital approximately 100 metres from Clarkehouse Road and there is a Q-Park with 560 spaces next to the University of Sheffield approximately 300 metres from Clarkehouse Road.
The restricted parking times are routinely abused
People park up and sit in their vehicles from 8am onwards blocking the cycle lane. At 9.30am this parking becomes legitimate and most drivers will leave their vehicles parked there until 4.30pm.
This makes it even more difficult and potentially dangerous to cycle along a very busy road.
CycleSheffield and Sustrans have held events to monitor this situation. Whilst this deters the offenders on the day it only highlights the problem and doesn’t solve it.
What is the solution?
Due to the volume of motor traffic the long term solution is to provide a segregated cycleway along Clarkehouse Road.
In the short term the council could immediately remove the free parking along the road, meaning there was no benefit to parking on the road instead of using the multi storey car parks. Alternatively they could remove the on-road parking entirely. Or at least they could keep the parking restriction on the cycle lane in force until 10am. This would increase the time that people would need to remain in their vehicles and reduce the appeal of doing so.
Report the issue to the council
If you see this problem please report Sheffield Council parking services via email firstname.lastname@example.org (attach a photo if possible, clearly showing the registration number of offending vehicles) or by phone 0114 2736255.
It would be good to raise the problem with your councillors as well. https://www.writetothem.com/ is the easiest way of doing this.
The more often the issue is raised with council officers and councillors the more likely it that they will take action to resolve the issue.
We have contacted Councillor Mazher Iqbal, Councillor George George Lindars-Hammond and Tom Finnegan-Smith who are responsible for transport in Sheffield, as well as the three councillors whose ward Clarkehouse Road is in to raise this issue.
We’ve set up a petition calling for the council to end the abuse of the cycle lane. Please sign and share!