Measures in pipeline to make cycling black spot in Wandsworth much safer

By Charlotte Lillywhite, Local Democracy Reporter

A busy cycling and bus route is set to be permanently transformed to make it safer for pedestrians and cyclists.

Wandsworth council is pressing ahead with the first phase of a scheme to improve the safety of Queenstown Road, which has seen a high number of people injured in accidents in recent years.

A new council report warned Queenstown Road had a ‘poor safety record, with high numbers of injury collisions compared to other roads in London’. It described the road as one of the borough’s ‘busiest commuter cycle routes and a key bus route’.

A total of 79 people were injured in 71 collisions in Queenstown Road between Queen’s Circus and its northern borough boundary from 2018 to February 2023, according to data published in the report.

This included 33 cyclists and 10 pedestrians, with motorcyclists accounting for most of the remaining casualties. One person died and 19 people were seriously injured.

The council started putting together plans to redesign the road in phases to improve its safety in 2019.

Some improvements for cyclists were put in place under a temporary order in 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, including segregating the southbound cycle lane between Queen’s Circus and Chelsea Bridge and extending the northbound bus lane to 24 hours.

The council is now ready to carry out the permanent redesign of Queenstown Road between Queen’s Circus and Chelsea Bridge. This section forms the first phase of the overall scheme, with the authority working on designs for the rest of the road which could be completed in future phases.

The plans for the first phase involve replacing the ‘substandard’ cycle lanes with stepped tracks, planting more trees and further improving safety for cyclists at junctions.

The council’s transport committee will vote on proposals to approve the scheme moving to detailed design and construction on February 19. The executive will make a final decision on March 4. The scheme also needs final sign-off from Transport for London (TfL) to go ahead.

Construction works are expected to begin in late 2024 or early 2025 and take around six months to complete.

Jenny Yates, cabinet member for transport, said: “After years of under-investment in our roads and pavements, we are launching a decade of renewal for Wandsworth, starting with more funding for fixing our streets and support for people to walk and cycle safely around our borough.”

Pictured top: Section of Queenstown Road between Queen’s Circus and Chelsea Bridge (Picture: Google Street View)

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