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Improvements for cycling and public transport between Lewisham and Catford

Transport for London (TfL) has today confirmed that improvements will be made for a stretch of the A21 between the junction with Ladywell Road, south of Lewisham town centre and the gyratory at the South Circular Road in Catford. Works will start on Monday 24 August with measures expected to be in place by mid-September.

TfL is working closely with boroughs across London to ensure that transport plays its role in enabling a healthy and sustainable recovery from coronavirus.

Measures are being introduced quickly to help improve the environment for walking and cycling as well as encouraging people to use buses along this key route.

Residents in the area should look out for a letter from TfL with more information and share comments and feedback via streetspacelondon@tfl.gov.uk.

Features include:

  • Existing bus and cycle lanes to be extended to 24/7 operation, to maintain separation between cyclists and traffic around the clock and to reduce bus journey times for people using public transport
  • A new 20mph limit throughout to reduce the risk of collisions
  • New sections of protected cycle space, including segregated cycle lanes using cylinders along Molesworth Street and parts of Lewisham High Street
  • An increase in the total length of bus lanes on the corridor
  • A bus stop bypass to protect people cycling
  • The introduction of a number of banned turns to reduce the risk of collisions between people cycling and motor vehicles, including a left turn ban from Ladywell Road to A21 except buses, cycles and taxis, a right turn ban from Courthill Road to A21 except buses, cycles and taxis, and a southbound right turn ban into Wildfell Road
  • Four side roads to be made exit only, except cycles: Rosenthal Road, Feldlay Road, Roxley Road and Mount Pleasant Road
  • 80m of parking and loading bays removed from A21 and relocated to side roads where possible
  • A pelican crossing on Lewisham High Street (just south of the junction with Molesworth) will be converted to a walking and cycling toucan crossing.

A monitoring programme will be in place to consider the impact of these temporary changes, including banned turns, to review the impact on the local area. The banned turns being introduced in TfL’s scheme are considered essential for the safety of people cycling in the area.

Cllr Sophie McGeevor, Lewisham’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport said: “We are pleased that TfL has recognised the huge potential for improving the safety of cyclists on the busy A21 corridor between Lewisham and Catford. With more people cycling for the first time as a consequence of COVID-19, enhancing cycle safety is a priority for Lewisham Council. Public transport capacity is limited so supporting more people cycle will improve air quality, reduce congestion, improve the environment for pedestrians, and prevent a car led recovery from COVID-19. We have asked TfL to monitor the impact of these changes closely and we will be working with them to review the scheme”.

These are temporary measures, being introduced quickly as part of TfL’s broader aim to ensure a healthy and sustainable recovery from COVID-19. Having worked with TfL for some time on the proposals we believe this strongly builds the case for our long term ambition to have a fully segregated and permanent cycle way along the ‘Lewisham spine’ on this stretch of the A21.

View TfL’s map and find out more about the improvements.

Working with businesses

Improving our residents’ access to safer streets, green spaces and cleaner air is important to us. So is the prosperity of our local businesses as the local economy starts to pick up following lockdown.

Over the past several weeks we have been working with local businesses who are trading in areas where we have implemented temporary COVID-19 transport measures, such as creating more space for pedestrians on high streets and on streets with modal filters (temporary road closures) designed to reduce vehicle traffic and create safe pedestrian/cycle space as a response to COVID-19.

We recently caught up with one local business, Parlez, to find out how their business has changed during the coronavirus and the introduction of modal filters on Coulgate Street in Brockley.

Read what Parlez had to say.

Re-routing your journey

We understand that the modal filters may add a few extra minutes to your journey time. Although we would like to encourage you to move to more sustainable forms of transport which are permitted to enter our low traffic areas - such as walking, cycling or via public transport – we understand you may need to travel by car on some occasions. Following your feedback we have been working with Satnav providers to update their systems and have also been in touch with online maps such as Google. Now, if you use a digital mapping tool such as a Satnav or Google maps, it will show you a route which avoids the modal filters.

Enforcement cameras for Lee Green

Cameras have now been installed in three out of four modal filter locations on bus and emergency services routes: in Dermody Road, Manor Lane and Ennersdale Road. This means that any driver, with the exception of bus and emergency vehicle drivers, who passes through these filters will be recorded on camera and issued with a penalty charge notice. The charge is set by London Councils at £130 (or a reduced rate if paid within 14 days). It is expected that this will help reduce some of the traffic alternative routes that have been identified to the west of the railway line. Unfortunately, one of our cameras on Manor Park has been vandalised and is currently out of use. We will be re-erecting this camera as soon as possible, now that protective measures have been installed to prevent further vandalism.

Vandalism is a criminal offence and if you see anyone committing this, please report it to the police first by calling 101 or online, ideally adding photos or video footage and a registration number if you can – but not if it would mean putting yourself at risk. After this, please report the damage to us via the Council switchboard on 020 8314 6000 with confirmation that you have reported it to police. We will seek to reinstate it as soon as possible. Our funding is limited so making these repairs will impact on our ability to introduce further measures to support these schemes.

Keep your feedback coming

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time over the past several weeks to contribute to the Commonplace map and provide us with feedback on the temporary measures we’ve been introducing across the borough.

We understand that some people cannot walk or cycle, and that some residents will need to continue to use public transport or a car. By encouraging walking and cycling among those who can, we will help reduce congestions and the demand on services for those who can’t, increasing inclusive and fair access for all users.

If you would like to provide further feedback on the temporary measures we’ve been introducing across the borough please add them to the Commonplace map. We’re currently going through several hundred comments each week and using these to make improvements to the scheme. Please bear with us while we make these changes.

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