Transport for London (TfL) is consulting on much-needed improvements at one of London’s most dangerous junctions: where Battersea Bridge meets Chelsea Embankment, as well as improvements across the bridge and south into Wandsworth.
The good news: the junction designs are good and will likely save lives for those cycling, walking and wheeling in the area.
The bad news: far more is needed to make walking, cycling and wheeling truly safe across the area covered by this scheme. More details and our verdict below. Please respond today to the short TfL survey at www.haveyoursay.tfl.gov.uk/batterseabridge
The consultation closes on Tuesday 24 January. (You’ll have to register with the TfL website but this is really quick, as is the survey.)
We broadly welcome the proposed changes at the Battersea Bridge junction with Chelsea Embankment, particularly the pedestrian crossings, banned turn and dedicated cycle signals. The changes finally put signalised pedestrian crossings of every arm of this lethal junction, they ban a turn into Beaufort Street and provide cycle signals and tracks on some arms. The main remaining issue is a ‘hook’ risk for those cycling south onto Battersea Bridge with a risk of vehicles turning across them.
The scheme misses out making cycling along Chelsea Embankment safer. Yet this east-west corridor is one of the ‘highest potential’ for cycling on TfL’s own ‘Strategic Cycling Analysis’.
Again, this does little for walking, cycling or wheeling – and again this north-south corridor is one of the ‘highest potential’ for cycling according to TfL itself. The bridge and approach is constrained for space – but there are surely better ways of enabling cycling and public transport here? Cut the private motor traffic? Squeeze in cycle tracks? Put in Low Traffic Neighbourhoods either side of the approach (which TfL’s Strategic Neighbourhood Analysis suggests are needed), and use that to simplify junctions? Put in a bus gate?
Regardless – TfL and boroughs urgently need to make sensible decisions about how those walking, cycling and wheeling are meant to get across the Thames safely and easily – if not here, where there’s the highest potential for cycling, where?
Feel free to adapt this to add your own comments to the survey at Question 3
KEEP UP TO DATE