Roman Road – It’s a bit better. Oh no it isn’t!

Even as we sometimes look towards Bristol and envy some of the cycling-focused schemes they seem to be delivering, it sometimes good to realise that they are still not quite getting it right. This rings so true:
“Cycling has to be baked into all schemes, the same way that pavements are just put in, or roads built to access properties. Safe space for cycling has to be an intrinsic part of the roads from now on, if we want to see change in our lifetimes.”


Roman Road is one of many car-sick roads in Bristol. It’s a odd one-way road, that cuts a corner of the Downs. It’s simultaneously a rat run that avoids traffic lights at the end of Stoke Road, a long thin car park, a bus route, and a cycling route, created against a backdrop of the green leisure filled Durdham Downs.

What’s wrong with Roman Road, and how could it be better?


The sole segregated bike path on the Downs exits onto Roman Road, right at the junction with Stoke Road. This junction is wide and allows for high motor vehicle speeds, but has poor sight lines due to constant car parking. On a hot summer afternoon in 2014 a child was almost killed by a driver at this junction.


National Cycle Route 4 goes down Roman Road. As the road has been narrowed by permanently parked cars (resulting in…

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