‘Boris Johnson has confirmed details of an 18 month pilot scheme to assess the impact of allowing motorcycles into bus lanes on red route roads – those roads controlled by Transport for London.
Mayor Johnson says he has “long been staggered that while motorcyclists can use bus lanes in many other cities and some of our Boroughs they were not allowed to use the Transport for London red routes that crisscross the capital.”
Johnson claimed the change, opposed by some cycling groups, will help “ease congestion”.
The scheme does not cover bus lanes on roads operated by London’s boroughs which remain inaccessible to motorcycles and TfL is advising motorcyclists to familiarise themselves with the bus lanes open to them as well as checking the signs before entering any bus lanes. Bikers who stray into closed lanes could face a penalty charge of £100.
In March former Mayor Ken Livingstone ruled out allowing motorcyclists to ride in bus lanes, citing a report into a previous trial which suggested such a move could lead to increased dangers for cyclists. The results were disputed by political rivals including Johnson.
The London Cycling Campaign has previously said they were “seriously concerned that putting motorbikes in bus lanes will undermine plans…to make cycling a major transport mode in London.”
The new rules come into effect from 5th January 2009.