Local Transport Today (LTT) have reported that two road closure schemes in London have been halted due to public objections.
In the Borough of Newham a trial closure of Browning Road Bridge to almost all vehicles except buses was halted after a demonstration by 80 local residents opposing the scheme. See this article in the Newham Recorder for more details: https://tinyurl.com/y64e63x4
This closure was part of the Liveable Neighbourhood policy implemented by the Council and funded by TfL. It was alleged that people were using the bridge as a “short-cut”. Only a very few local residents would be granted permits to use the bridge.
In Tower Hamlets a trial on Antill Road, Coburn Road and Tredegar Road of another “Liveable Neighbourhood” scheme was halted after a few days. A Tower Hamlets spokesperson told LTT that “There was a small minority of people vociferously objecting to the trial and some staff on site did feel intimidated by their actions”. Apparently taxi and PHV drivers were among the objectors.
Comment: Road closures can cause enormous difficulties to residents and disruption to the road network. They create congestion elsewhere and additional journey times. But these are part of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy to deter and reduce vehicle use when most people do not support such policies.
It is good to see that just a few residents can stop such schemes being implemented by some local activism. Councillors and council staff frequently have an agenda that is very different to what most of the population want, and are being encouraged by the Mayor and TfL to bring in such schemes. But it just takes a bit of opposition to halt them.
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