Lambeth Bridge roundabout: TfL could do better
Cycle campaigners have been unanimous in criticizing the design of the scheme Transport for London is proposing for the roundabout on the Westminster side of Lambeth Bridge.
As part of its Better Junctions programme, TfL has been consulting the public about its proposed changes to the Lambeth Bridge roundabout. The main proposals are:
- Extending footways and traffic islands to reduce traffic speeds and provide more space for pedestrians
- Raising the zebra crossings to the same level as the footway on all four roundabout approaches in order to reduce traffic speeds
- Converting the footway around the roundabout to ‘shared space’ for pedestrians and cyclists, meaning it can be used by those cyclists who prefer to use the zebra crossings instead of the roundabout
- Providing blue Cycle Superhighway logos on the roundabout carriageway in order to raise motorist awareness of cyclists
Although the measures to reduce traffic speed at the approaches to the roundabout may be useful, the proposals for cyclists to share the footways with pedestrians have attracted criticism. This is not only because of the potential conflict between cyclists and pedestrians but also because of the risk of collision when cyclists re-enter the carriageway. Cyclists are particularly concerned that, when they use a zebra crossing, they do not have priority over traffic passing through it.
A Love London, Go Dutch workshop, facilitated by experts from the Dutch Cycling Embassy, saw representatives from Transport for London, local councils and cycling and walking campaigns work together to produce a people-friendly redesign of Lambeth Bridge and its approaches.
Presenting the outcome of the workshop at the Love London, Go Dutch conference on 18th October, Dutch Cycling Embassy expert Marjolein de Lange agreed with an earlier call by LCC for a Dutch-style roundabout on the Westminster side, while the recommendation for the Lambeth side was for a cycle-friendly crossroads with traffic lights, replacing the current signal-controlled roundabout.
Another of the conclusions of the workshop was that, if facilities on the bridge for pedestrians and cyclists were raised to Dutch standards, the remaining space would only be sufficient for one lane of motor traffic in each direction. The implications of this are that either the bus lane would have to go or some motor vehicles would have to be banned from the bridge.