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Transport for London slammed for roundabout plan that would “make it worse” for cyclists in spot where Moira Gemmill was killed last year

TfL announced it will narrow motor traffic lanes on Lambeth North Roundabout as a temporary measure before looking into substantial changes

Transport for London (TfL) faces criticism for reviving plans for a junction where a cyclist died last year, which were formerly rejected over concerns they increased conflict between cyclists and motor traffic.

Interim proposals to narrow motor traffic lanes on the Lambeth North roundabout, which links two Cycle Superhighways (CSE-W and CS8), are a short-term measure, with the aim of slowing motor traffic down. However, London’s former Cycling Commissioner, Andrew Gilligan, says it would be better to do nothing as narrow lanes will force cyclists into the path of motor traffic.

In April 2015 Moira Gemmill died cycling at the roundabout, after which Westminster City Council came under pressure from walking and cycling charities to improve safety at the junction, which is under its control. TfL says it will investigate long-term improvements which would “substantially change” the junction.

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“They are making it worse,” Gilligan told “It will be far better to do nothing than to do this. They are narrowing the road and will force cyclists into the path of traffic.”

Construction will start in January to widen pavements and traffic islands, and raise zebra crossings to footway height, with the aim of reducing traffic speeds and providing more space for pedestrians. The designs will also, TfL says, “provide narrower, better-defined lanes to discourage motorists from weaving in or between lanes on the roundabout”.

However, Andrew Gilligan says better designs exist for this junction. He told those proposed are the same plans he rejected in 2013, with the exception cyclists will not be permitted to use zebra crossings at the roundabout arms. 

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“There was a great scheme for that roundabout, they were going to close the Horseferry Road exit to everything except buses and bikes, and that would have massively reduced traffic through the roundabout, and that would have been much better,” he said.

“What this is, it is the same old rubbish creeping in from the back of the cupboard, clanging its chains. When I joined in 2013 the TfL cupboard was crammed with stuff like this - pointless or dangerous little schemes, fiddly schemes - they would widen a kerb here, they would put a titchy bit of protection there.”

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Plans were also once drawn up for a “Dutch style” roundabout at this junction, but later rejected.

On the long-term improvements, TfL’s website says: “We are continuing to investigate design options that would substantially change the road layout at Lambeth Bridge northern roundabout, Lambeth Bridge southern roundabout and on Lambeth Bridge itself.

“We intend to hold a public consultation when feasible schemes are identified. The current short-term improvements are designed to improve safety at the roundabout independently of any longer term scheme.”

TfL were contacted for comment on concerns over the plans.

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freespirit1 | 7 years ago
1 like

It's North of Lambeth Bridge.


Lambeth North is a tube station about 3/4 mile away from this junction.

StuInNorway | 7 years ago

As clearly the idea of closing Horseferry Road is not going to happen, an alternative is use an active traffic management system controlling the flow onto the rundabout when traffic levels reach a predetermined level.  Not full normal traffic lights, but prior to th epedestrian crossings, a set of lights with ONLY amber and red. If traffic is getting busy, which results in this roundabout becoming gridlocked, the lightsgo into a sequence that stops traffic from each road in a predetermined sequence, even a 5-10 second stop, opening up a gap for other traffic to come through the roundabout.  Move bikes to a segregated lane that skirts the stop lights using the entire space between zebra crossings and roundabout as a virtual ASL.

By only having a "stop" phase and no green "GO" phase, the natural laws of the roundabout behind still apply, but with managed gpas in traffic from each side to stop one line of traffic being too dominant and stopping incoming traffic.  As it stands today, cars/bikes coming from the Vauxhaull side struggle to filter into the traffic coming over lambeth Bridge in peak hours. This system adds breathing space.  I suspect (thin being London drivers we're talking about) that red light enforcement cameras might be required at least for a while....
A similar system is in use here in Stavanger where a bus-way runs through the middle of some roundabouts, this system is used with only amber/red lights to stop traffic flows to allow free flow of busses, then reverts to a normal roundabout as soon as they pass.

alansmurphy | 7 years ago


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