Transport for London (TfL) has launched the first two Barclays cycle superhighways to increase the number of Londoners using bicycles to commute to work.

The two pilot routes are the first of 12 planned superhighways designed to provide cyclists with clearly marked, direct and continuous cycle routes into central London.

TfL is planning to increase the cycle trips made every day on both pilot routes from 5,000 to 27,000 by 2013.

The cycle routes, which run from Merton to the City and Barking to Tower Gateway, have been installed with highly visible blue cycle lanes.

Both the superhighways are trialing 37 cycle safety mirrors at junctions to give drivers of large vehicles better visibility of cyclists when preparing to make a left turn.

The routes also have 84 new advanced stop lines at junctions along both routes and a space for cyclists to wait at lights ahead of the queue of traffic.