These preliminary works are vital preparation for the main scheme
The conversion of the notorious Elephant & Castle southern roundabout moved a step closer today as Transport for London (TfL) announced that preliminary works to transform the site to a signalled junction will begin on 15 February.
The new road layout is expected to be finished early next year and help to regenerate the area.
Pedestrians, road users and local businesses will all benefit from a smoother flow of traffic as a result of the new road layout.
The preliminary works will involve preparations for new traffic signals and street lighting, repairs to drainage systems and temporary alterations to the traffic island on the approach to the roundabout from Walworth Road.
Main works get under way this summer and will include putting in new cycle lanes and Advanced Stop Lines for cyclists at junctions.
Paved areas next to the roads will also be widened to provide more space for pedestrians and cyclists to navigate the junction quickly and safely.
As traffic lights are being installed, the subways around the southern roundabout will be filled in and replaced with surface crossings, providing easier crossing options for local residents. New trees will be planted, and railings and other unnecessary clutter related to the subways removed.
Kulveer Ranger, the Mayor of London's Transport Advisor said: 'The Elephant & Castle southern roundabout has been a source of frustration for people living, working and using the area for many years.
'This crucial work encompasses a number of the Mayor's priorities to improve the Capital by providing new facilities for cyclists, ripping out unnecessary railings and creating a better space for Londoners.
'It will help achieve a better balance between traffic and pedestrians and act as a catalyst in ensuring the broader aim of regenerating the area.'
Dana Skelley, Director of Roads for TfL, said: 'These preliminary works are vital preparation for the main scheme and will enable TfL to start the core construction work to overhaul the southern roundabout this summer.
'While these works are being carried out, we will make every effort to ensure that disruption to all road users is kept to a minimum.'
Cllr Paul Noblet, Southwark Council's Executive Member for Regeneration, said: 'The £1.5bn regeneration of Elephant & Castle will revolutionise this iconic part of South East London.
'The work to free up the southern roundabout for pedestrians and abolish the ugly and outmoded subways is a welcome start to the wider improvements in the area, including the demolition of the Heygate estate later this year.'
The preliminary works are scheduled to finish by April 2010, with the main works completed by early 2011.
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