In an earlier post’s comments, a reader asked about some paving which had been installed on the new cycle path on the inner ring road, commenting that it looked dangerous. Having not seen the paving, I at first assumed that the commenter meant the tactile paving which is used at the start and end of cycle paths to indicate the nature of the path to visually impaired pedestrians. My wife then mentioned some new paving on the edge of the McMullen Road cycle path which sounded similar and which wasn’t tactile paving, so I went to have a look.
The paving is block paving, with some blocks protruding almost an inch in a staggered pattern.
The paving fills the gap between the cycle path and the road, where it moves away from the edge of the road to avoid a telegraph pole.
To me, it looks like it is intended to prevent cyclists from attempting to merge with traffic pulling out of McMullen Road and instead to direct them towards using the pavement to either join Haughton Road heading into town, to cross Haughton Road and then proceed along either the road or the Riverside Path, or to cross McMullen Road and use the riverside path towards Mill Lane. However, there are no markings to indicate that this is the case.
My advice for anone heading down McMullen Road on the bike path who wishes to join the road traffic on Haughton Road would be to make use of the box junction just visible in the first photo, or the one slightly further up McMullen Road, to access McMullen Road while the traffic is stationary and then to proceed as normal. If you wish to access either of the off-road paths, use the pedesitrian crossings to do so, taking care to avoid other users.
It is possible to ride over the paving (I tried) but only at very slow speeds. Not recommended!