TfL's plans to support cycling in Southwark and Lambeth

11 February 2021
"I'm really excited to share our next set of plans that will make sustainable transport safer in Southwark and Lambeth"
  • Upgrades to the CS7 route in Southwark will extend the improved route to Elephant & Castle, enabling safer journeys to central London and beyond 
  • Feedback from the public is vital to making the changes work and TfL is asking people to give their feedback on the changes via the TfL website 

Transport for London (TfL) sets out plans to support safer essential journeys by bike in Lambeth and Southwark, with construction work planned to start next month. The trial changes, along the A23 between Oval and Streatham and on the CS7 cycle route between Oval and Elephant & Castle, will open up these two key cycling corridors in southwest London, enabling more cycle journeys and giving people confidence that they can travel safely along these busy roads.  

The changes are a vital part of TfL's response to the coronavirus pandemic and TfL is asking people for their initial feedback on the plans ahead of construction work starting in early March. These changes are being delivered as trials and TfL will welcome further feedback once they are in place.  

The A23 between Oval and Streatham is a vital link between some of southwest and central London, but it can be a very busy and intimidating environment for people cycling, particularly the huge numbers of people across London who have begun or restarted cycling during the coronavirus pandemic. From March, TfL will be making changes to bus lanes along the A23 to make it more suitable as a safe cycling route, including:  

  • Widening bus lanes at stops to make it easier for people cycling to safely pass stationary buses  
  • Creating separate traffic signals for cyclists at key junctions in the Brixton area to give people cycling an earlier green light, and creating larger advanced stop lines for people cycling at other junctions  
  • New restrictions on a limited number of left turns for motor vehicles along the corridor to reduce conflict with people cycling  
  • Longer bus lanes will match the existing 24-hour trial operation to enable essential cycle journeys at all times, as well as improved bus times  

The changes have been designed to benefit both people cycling and people using buses, with bus journeys set to be made quicker for people travelling through the area. The planned changes have been designed for rapid delivery and people cycling in the area will be able to use the upgraded route after four weeks of construction work, in April.  

TfL will also be moving forward with further upgrades to the key CS7 cycle route, which is one of the most heavily used routes in London and has been improved during the coronavirus pandemic to support thousands of essential journeys in southwest London and beyond. The latest changes, between Oval and Elephant & Castle, will include:  

  • New cycle wands to segregate the existing cycle lanes on the westbound and southbound approaches to the Camberwell New Road/ Kennington Park Road junction   
  • New two-stage turn road markings for cyclists turning right at Camberwell New Road/Kennington Park Road/Harleyford Street junction, and early release signals for cyclists on the Camberwell New Road and Harleyford Street arms of the junction   
  • Wider bus lanes to make it easier for people to cycle in them   
  • Some changes to parking and loading bays on Kennington Park Road and Newington Butts  
  • A restricted left turn from Kennington Park Road into Kennington Lane (westbound) for all traffic except cyclists and Emergency Services, to reduce the likelihood of conflict between motor vehicles and people cycling   
  • New and longer bus lanes will match the existing 24-hour trial operation to enable essential cycle journeys at all times    

These changes will mean that TfL's upgrade of the 13km CS7 route is almost complete, making it much easier for people to cycle between Colliers Wood, Elephant & Castle and beyond.   

Making sure the changes work for people living, working and travelling in the area is vital. While the trial changes are being delivered from March via experimental traffic orders as part of TfL's pandemic response, people are being invited to submit their initial feedback on the changes from today via TfL's website.

A more extensive engagement process will begin later once the changes are in place and all feedback received from now onwards will be taken into consideration as part of this. TfL will use this engagement to help it decide whether it is necessary to make any changes to the trial scheme once it is in place, and whether it should stay in place permanently.  

Will Norman, London's Walking & Cycling Commissioner, said: 

'I'm really excited to share our next set of plans that will make sustainable transport safer in Southwark and Lambeth. Throughout the pandemic we have seen a significant increase in cycling as a form of essential travel and exercise, despite a huge drop in the number of journeys being made with Londoners staying at home. Protected cycle lanes, restricted turning movements and wider bus lanes will all reduce road danger for people riding bikes in this area.  

'These changes will also extend cycling routes in southwest London and its surrounding areas, building on our growing cycle network. It's really important we hear how these trial changes work for those travelling around the area, so I urge people to provide their feedback on the TfL website.'

Helen Cansick, TfL's Head of Healthy Streets Delivery, said:

'As the pandemic continues, the need for walking and cycling infrastructure is more important than ever, to ensure that people can make essential journeys safely and there is enough space on public transport for those who need to travel.  

'I hope that these trial changes to roads in Lambeth and Southwark will make a noticeable difference to cycle journeys on two of the area's busiest corridors and give people new to cycling confidence that it is a safe and viable way to make essential journeys during the pandemic. We'd really like to hear people's thoughts on our plans and will continue to work with both councils and people in the area through the trial period.'

Cllr Claire Holland, Deputy Leader of Lambeth Council (Sustainable Transport, Environment and Clean Air), said:

'This is good news for our borough and furthers our aims of reducing danger for people who cycle as well as boosting bus journey efficiency.  

'Changes to main roads in Lambeth, together with area-wide low traffic neighbourhoods on our local streets, are the only way we make Lambeth into a borough whereby everyone has access to affordable and safe mobility options. I would encourage people in Lambeth to feed back to TfL on how the changes are working whilst the experimental schemes are in place.'

Cllr Catherine Rose, Cabinet Member for Leisure, Climate Emergency and Roads at Southwark Council, said:

'We welcome the addition of a safer cycleway to support cyclists' journeys to Elephant and Castle. We have long been supporting TfL in making this key south London destination friendlier and safer for pedestrians and cyclists. Working with the community and representing their views to TfL to get the implementation right is a critical role for the council. 

'Southwark Council is committed to helping people to upgrade to cycling and walking, modes of transport proven to improve personal health and happiness, as well as supporting better air quality and road safety for all.'

Recent cycle count data from TfL shows increased levels of cycling in both inner and outer London last autumn, as people across the capital continued to use active travel as a vital way of getting around during the coronavirus pandemic. These counts showed a seven per cent increase in cycling in inner London and a 22 per cent increase in outer London, compared to the previous count in spring 2019.  

In December, TfL published its Travel in London report, which showed that almost half of all journeys between April and June 2020 were made by walking and cycling - up from 29 per cent before the pandemic.  

TfL continues to work closely with councils across London to build on the total of 90km of new or upgraded cycle routes which have been delivered or are under construction in London since May 2020.  

Notes to editors:
The below websites will be live from 12 February for feedback: