Traffic, Roads & Parking

Enfield Council has published information about its progress in obtaining funding for urgent Streetspace schemes, designed to enable more walking and cycling post-lockdown in a situation where people will be unable or reluctant to use public transport. A document recently published on the council's Let's Talk website also includes updates about the status of planned low-traffic neighbourhoods in the Fox Lane, Connaught Gardens and Bowes Primary areas.

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A new poll has found that: the majority of Londoners support moves by the Mayor, Transport for London and local councils to give more space to pedestrians and cyclists; Londoners are finding it difficult to keep socially distant from other people; there is support for face masks on public transport being compulsory; a third of Londoners expect to cycle more, but almost as many expect to use their cars more..

Enfield Council has submitted a bid to TfL for funding for a number of Covid Streetspace measures: pop-up cycle lanes, quieter neighbourhoods, modal filters to block through traffic, school streets and temporary footway widening. A revised design has been developed for the Fox Lane Quieter Neighbourhood and will be shared with the community prior to implementation.

In response to a spate of anti-social behaviour in the vicinity of Alexandra Palace and in the surrounding park, in particular dangerous and noisy driving and pavement parking by 'boy racers', Alexandra Palace Way will be closed at night until further notice. All parking bays will be closed throughout the day and night. The W3 bus will be diverted during the road closures.

Find out everything you need to know on how to ask your council for a School Street to a) reduce air pollution exposure and b) overcrowding at the school gate.

The government has told local authorities that it expects them to take urgent measures to reallocate roadspace away from cars to provide more room for walking and cycling 'as swiftly as possible, and in any event within weeks'. They are to include 'pop-up' cycle lanes with light segregation features, more school streets, lower speed limits, pedestrian and cycle zones that exclude motor traffic, low-traffic residential neighbourhoods, and bus and cycle corridors along key routes into town and city centres. Enfield Council's 'Streetspace Plan', announced last week, will incorporate measures of this sort - residents are able to upload their own suggestions on the council's Consultation Hub.

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Transport for London's Streetspace Programme, announced on Wednesday, is intended to rapidly transform the capital's streets to accommodate a possible ten-fold increase in cycling and five-fold increase in walking when lockdown restrictions are eased. Many boroughs have already started on their own similar schemes - Enfield's was announced on Tuesday. Measures of this kind have already been endorsed by the prime minister and business secretary.

'We don't want or need to go back to those fume-filled, congested and hostile roads of the past' - the message concluding a letter sent by campaigners to the leaders of Enfield Council concerned about what might happen once the coronavirus lockdown ends. They urge the leaders to to take steps to ensure that, as restrictions are gradually relaxed, high levels of car usage do not return, hindering social distancing and discouraging active travel modes - walking and cycling. Their suggestions include 'pop-up' cycle lanes along corridors for key workers, widening of pinchpoints that present hazards when walking or cycling, and re-allocation of road space at places where queues outside shops make it impossible for pedestrians to maintain safe distances.

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The top end of Hedge Lane will be closed for Thames Water work from 29th April to 26th May, though the Yasar Halim store will still be accessible by road from the Green Lanes end of Hedge Lane. Through traffic will be diverted either to the north (via the A10 and Church Street West) or to the south (via the North Circular Road). A temporary one-way system will be in force in the area comprising Park Avenue, New River Crescent, Lightcliffe Road, Windsor Road and Osborne Road.

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'Social distancing' has drawn attention to how narrow many pavements are and what a small percentage of the space on our streets is devoted to walking - which is theoretically at the top of the transport mode hierarchy. London Living Streets has published an important discussion paper about how streets should be re-evaluated in the face of Covid. As the authors point out, the ideas reflected the situation in mid-April, and the situation will undoubtedly evolve. At national level Living Streets is suggesting that we contact councillors with suggestions for reallocating space for people on foot where social distancing is proving difficult.

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