FOI request detail

Highbury Park Victoria line vent shaft

Request ID: FOI-1524-2324
Date published: 04 September 2023

You asked

Dear TFL, Could you please advise if the Victoria Line shaft located in the middle of Highbury Field park playground is still active. Could you please confirm weather the shaft is passive or mechanical. Should the shaft not be closed and Considering many local very young children are using the site on a regular basis , could you please advise on the measures taken to ensure no pollutants is being released in this sensitive location. Fnally is the shaft using a filtering system to reduce pollution from the exhaust air. Thank you

We answered

TfL Ref: FOI-1524-2324

Thank you for your request which we received on 10 August 2023, asking for information about the Victoria Line shaft located in the middle of Highbury Field park.

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Environmental Information Regulations and our information access policy.  I can confirm that we hold the information you require.

We have reviewed our asset records and believe the ventilation shaft you are inquiring about is a draught relief shaft (DRS) connected to the north end of Highbury & Islington station. This passive DRS is currently in use, serving both Victoria line tube platforms and cannot be closed.

Regarding the potential pollution from the DRS, the quality of air on the London Underground is a key area of focus for TfL, as we work to continue to ensure a safe working environment for our colleagues and comfort for customers. Our monitoring has shown that dust levels on the Tube remain well below the limits set by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), and on most of our network are below the recommendations from the Institute of Occupational Medicine, which are set significantly lower.

However, we are not complacent and are exploring the latest innovations to tackle the concerns. We have a robust three pillar programme of work to tackle Tube dust - funding of world-leading research; cleaning and monitoring; and utilising the latest advances in innovation.

In response to your final question, it is industry practice not to utilise filtration on DRS, as introduction of filtration systems would render the DRS unusable.

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for any reason, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.

Yours sincerely

Eva Hextall
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

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