Mayor endorses Lambeth decision to scrap ‘failing’ low traffic scheme

By Noah Vickers, Local Democracy Reporter

Sadiq Khan has “applauded” Lambeth council for suspending a controversial low traffic neighbourhood (LTN).

The mayor said it was clear the Streatham Wells LTN had caused “unintended consequences” and that it was the right decision to suspend it.

Labour-run Lambeth said the combination of the Streatham Wells scheme and “frequent roadworks by Thames Water and other bodies” had caused a “significant strain on bus services” on the A23.

It led the authority to suspend the scheme on Thursday, following comments from Mr Khan on LBC last week in which he said the council-designed LTN was “not working” and was “causing huge problems”.

The decision came as a relief to many residents, but walking and cycling campaigners said it was a “backward step” that would mean “more traffic in residential streets, more traffic overall, fewer opportunities for walking and cycling and more road danger for everyone”.

The mayor said: “Not every single scheme will be perfect. Some schemes will be begun, and there’ll be consequences that aren’t always positive.

“I think Lambeth is a brilliant council, they’ve had brilliant LTNs across Lambeth. This one has caused some challenges. I think they’ve done the right thing by suspending it. I think Lambeth should be applauded for their pragmatism.”

The LTN was launched on a trial basis last October in residential streets east of Streatham High Road (A23), and was intended to remain in place for 12-18 months.

The council’s deputy leader, Rezina Chowdhury, said: “We’ve listened to the concerns raised by local people. We always said that this was a trial, and we would be led by the data.”

Pictured top: Sadiq Khan (Still from video taken by LDRS/Noah Vickers)

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