By Grainne Cuffe, Local Democracy Reporter
Lambeth council has been “inundated” with requests for low traffic neighbourhoods across the borough – but doesn’t have money to implement more.
Lambeth received £2,639,000 from the Mayor of London’s Streetspace plans, the most out of all London councils, to cover emergency transport measures to aid social distancing and promote active travel in the wake of Covid-19.
LTNs, which involve placing camera-enforced or physical barriers in streets to prevent through-traffic, are being implemented across the capital as part of the scheme.
Lambeth recently implemented its fifth LTN in Tulse Hill, following Railton, Oval Triangle, Ferndale, and Streatham Hill.
One of the main aims of the LTNs is to promote active travel such as cycling, walking and public transport, which many residents support.
But residents have also raised concerns about traffic displacement, lack of consultation, increased journey times, and the division of communities.
In a question published ahead of next week’s council meeting, Councillor Fred Cowell asked the cabinet member for sustainable transport, environment and clean air, Cllr Claire Holland, what residents could do if they wanted an LTN in their area.
He said the LTNs have been “widely admired in Lambeth and beyond”.
“They have helped drive down pollution and encourage healthier modes of transport and show Lambeth leading the way on this issue.
“Residents in Peran Road, Chestnut Road, Rosendale Road, and Guernsey Grove are calling out for LTN’s in their road.”
Cllr Holland said: “The popularity of our emergency low traffic neighbourhood programme has led to us being inundated with requests from different parts of the borough for their neighbourhoods to be added.
“The support and interest shows how many of our residents welcome measures to make their streets safer and to enable more active travel.”
But she said committing to new LTNs is not possible at the moment.
She SAID: “The biggest constraints that we are facing against this goal are limited officer capacity and available funding.
“The existing emergency LTNs and other interventions already implemented as part of our emergency response to Covid-19 still require significant staff resources so that we can ensure ongoing benefits are realised.
“The only funding currently available for transport measures is emergency funding through the Mayor’s Streetspace programme and the government,” Cllr Holland said.
The council is facing a £28 million funding gap in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cllr Holland added: “This means at present, it is difficult to look beyond what was set out in our emergency programme.
“Many of the measures in the programme have been delivered aside from LTNs in Brixton Hill and Streatham Wells which remain a priority.
“Unfortunately, therefore at the current time we are unable to commit to any further LTNs but will keep this under review as resources allow.”
Pictured top: Shakespeare Road in the Railton LTN
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