The death of a 25-year-old cyclist hit by a car in the early hours of Saturday morning has led to renewed calls to make the borough safer for those on two wheels.
Laurent Patrick Cullinan, known by friends as Patrick, died weeks before his 26th birthday after his pushbike was in a collision with a silver Honda Accord in Kingston Road, Raynes Park at 12.45am on Saturday.
Laurent, who had a long-term girlfriend of seven years, had just finished his two-year course in aeronautical engineering at Kingston College and attained merits and distinctions.
It is believed he was cycling home to Burghley Avenue, New Malden, after meeting friends.
The driver of the car, a 32-year-old man, who stopped, was arrested on suspicion of causing serious injury by dangerous driving and has been bailed until September.
The tragic incident follows a campaign for more cycling lanes around the borough after Merton missed out on a significant share of the Mayor of London's £100m ‘Mini Holland’ fund to make a number of outer London boroughs into cycle hubs redesigned on Dutch principles.
No cyclists have died as a result of road collisions in Merton in the past five years, but there were six serious incidents involving cyclists in 2013 and 12 in 2012.
Merton Council, which hoped to receive £10m towards cycling projects, is currently in discussions with the General London Authority and TfL to clarify how much funding they will receive and how it can be used to make cycling "safer and more convenient for everyone."
Charles Barraball, Merton co-ordinator for the London Cycling Campaign, said he would like to see physically protected cycle tracks in areas of heavy traffic, priority for people travelling by foot and pedal at every junction and a borough-wide 20 mph speed limit.
Recent investment in cycle infrastructure has focused on improvements between South Wimbledon and Colliers Wood, providing a connection to Cycle Superhighway 7, which links the borough to the City via Southwark.
Future improvements include a cycle scheme planned for Beddington Lane, Mitcham, extending towards Colliers Wood.
New cycle links and routes are also planned for town centre development projects in Mitcham and Colliers Wood, where a separate cycle lane has been built in part of Leyton Road.
While there have been no other serious traffic collisions at the Kingston Road junction in the past year, residents said they are concerned about road safety in the area.
Dreshawn Hill, manager at Radiance Health and Beauty, which looks onto the scene of the crash, said: "No-one has been hurt but there have been previous accidents nearby.
"It's not new but nothing's happened like this accident."
Space for Cycling, a campaign run by the London Cycling Campaign is calling for protected cycling lanes in Kingston Road and other routes around the borough.
For information about free cycle training for adults and children in Merton, visit: merton.gov.uk/transport-streets/cycling.htm