New plans to improve safety and transform one of the busiest parts of the Capital have been published by Transport for London (TfL) and Islington Council. A consultation is now underway on plans for Highbury Corner, which would see the western side of the roundabout completely removed and replaced by a major new public space.
Removing the western side of the roundabout would allow a two-way traffic system to be introduced with improved pedestrian crossings. It would also allow new segregated lanes for cyclists to be created as, despite a lack of facilities, they now make up 22 per cent of all traffic using the roundabout. The improvement work is part of TfL's £4bn Road Modernisation Plan to radically transform the way the Capital's roads and public spaces are used.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said:
'Highbury Corner heaves with hundreds of thousands of motorists, cyclists and pedestrians every day. It is a challenging area to navigate but the changes we are proposing will be a vast improvement, particularly for the many thousands of passengers who disgorge onto the pavement from Highbury & Islington station; and also for the cyclists who will find new segregated cycle lanes and signalised crossings that will make the area far safer for them.'
The work proposed would make the area a more pleasant and accessible place by:
Leon Daniels, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL, said:
'Our proposed improvements at Highbury Corner would radically change this area from a traffic thoroughfare to a place to visit, and provide safer routes for those who do. The improvements would help us deliver our aim of eradicating death and serious injury from London's roads and encouraging more people to walk and cycle. We look forward to hearing people's views on our proposals.'
Cllr Claudia Webbe, Islington Council's executive member for environment and transport, said:
'This scheme will transform an area that is currently congested for pedestrians and difficult to navigate for cyclists. We aim to create an open, attractive and pleasant area that reclaims the enclosed trees from the traffic island for people to enjoy. Alongside this will be a much safer road environment for cyclists, creating a unique destination around one of Islington's major transport interchanges.
'We are looking forward to hearing the public's views on these proposals - including the options for opening up access to the trees and green space - and will work with TfL to get the best out of the area for residents, visitors and all road users.'
Members of the public can respond to the Highbury Corner consultation, which closes on 20 March, here: https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/roads/highbury-corner-roundabout.
As part of the Road Modernisation Plan, TfL is also currently replacing the 100-year-old Highbury Corner Bridge, which carries Holloway Road over the railways. This bridge replacement will safeguard a vital arterial road for the future and finish in 2017. The proposed improvements at Highbury Corner roundabout would not start until 2018, after the bridge has been replaced, to minimise the impact to road users.
TfL keeps London's traffic moving through a variety of methods. Technology, such as Split Cycle Offset Optimisation Technique (SCOOT) - proven to reduce delays by up to 12 per cent and being expanded across London - is used. Up-to-the-minute traffic information is provided via digital road signs, TfL's traffic status page and TfL's Twitter feeds to better manage the network. TfL also has the ability to control temporary traffic lights from its central traffic control centre, to help further ease traffic and minimise disruption.
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