Croydon LTN Supported by Council Despite Overwhelming Public Opposition

Croydon Council introduced a Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN) in the Crystal Palace and South Norwood areas using Temporary Traffic Orders a few months ago. In included road closures on such roads as Auckland Road (see photo above). The closures generated a very large number of complaints about increased traffic congestion and generally making life more difficult for residents including opposition from the neighbouring borough of Bromley into which traffic was diverted. A campaign group called “Open Our Roads” was formed to oppose the closures (see https://abdlondon.wordpress.com/2020/10/18/crystal-palace-campaign-against-road-closures/ ).

Croydon Council have undertaken a public consultation on the LTN and produced a report on the survey results. This will now be considered by a Traffic Management Advisory Committee on the 12th January. See link before for the report. It’s 370 pages long so here are some key points to note from it:

  1. They propose to remove the measures implementing the LTN but propose to replace them with a scheme based on an Experimental Traffic Order. This will include a number of road closures enforced by ANPR cameras from which they will no doubt generate considerable revenue, although there will be some exemptions for local residents. Note that in December Croydon effectively declared bankruptcy by issuing a Section 114 notice due to financial mismanagement over several years by the ruling Labour administration. They are desperate to raise income it seems.
  • These proposals are being made despite 75% of residents within the LTN area opposing the retention of the scheme and 62% opposing the introduction of an ANPR scheme. Some 61% want the scheme removed altogether with only 23% opposing – these are very decisive numbers for any public survey and do not even include responses from those living outside the LTN who responded.
  • There was very decisive opposition from areas such as SE19, SE20, SE25 and within Bromley.
  • Journey times in areas such as the Crystal Palace Triangle showed “moderate to significant” increases in peak periods, with a “serious” increase in the PM peak.

The proposal to retain any part of the LTN scheme is clearly totally undemocratic. They argue that the survey done was not a “truly representative picture of local views” which is surely nonsense. It is certainly no justification for continuing with the LTN and imposing an Experimental Traffic Order.

Will Councillors do what their residents want or ignore them in the name of pursuing a response to the “Climate Emergency” they have declared? We will soon see. But they should bear in mind that there is no evidence that LTNs create any overall benefits in terms of air pollution because it often just means drivers have to drive further to get to their chosen destinations and sit in traffic jams for longer.

Unfortunately Croydon is one those London Councils where Councillors decisions are apparently driven by dogma and not by logic.

Report to Traffic Management Committee: https://tinyurl.com/y57nbcse

Daily Telegraph Report: https://tinyurl.com/y53xcf4t

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Croydon Streetspace Consultation

The London Borough of Croydon has launched a public consultation on their “Streetspace” proposals. Namely the road closures that have hit residents in the Crystal Palace and South Norwood areas under the guise of a “Low Traffic Neighbourhood” when it has been anything but that. Traffic congestion has been horrendous and has even impacted roads in the adjacent borough of Bromley.

They are also consulting on Low Traffic Neighbourhood schemes in Broad Green and Albert Road with the former including a permit scheme for residents. There are also proposals for the Town Centre.

See https://new.croydon.gov.uk/croydon-streetspace for details – see bottom right for an open on-line consultation on the Crystal Palace and South Norwood scheme. This is the opportunity to have your say so please complete it!

These measures are claimed to be temporary but if the Council gets enough support they will undoubtedly make them permanent in due course. There is an active campaign against the closures under the name “Open Our Roads” who have already filed for a judicial review of the Council’s actions.

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Crystal Palace Campaign Against Road Closures

Above is the logo of a campaign against road closures in the Crystal Palace and Norwood areas of the London Borough of Croydon. Below is a note published by the campaign:

Who are we?

Open Our Roads is a grassroots campaign of concerned citizens working to ensure the residents, traders and visitors of Crystal Palace, Upper Norwood and South Norwood have fair and equal access to all public highways in the area. We stand for inclusive design, community cohesion and accountable governance.

What do we want?

Open roads: Fair and equal access for all road users to all of the local area’s public highways. The first step is removing all road barriers, re-opening our roads and eliminating unnecessary congestion from our main roads.

Clean air: Sustained and continuous improvement to the local air quality, especially on main roads where levels have been measured to be above the legal limits allowed.

Thriving town centres: The best possible conditions for our local businesses and traders to flourish during and after the pandemic while maintaining the unique character of our neighbourhoods.

Meaningful engagement: Proper consultation with all residents, businesses, road users, stakeholders and any person or organisation who will be impacted by significant changes to our local road network.

Evidenced-based policy: Data and evidence that leads to the most effective solutions and best practice policy addressing the community’s most pressing challenges.

Inclusive design: Ensuring our most vulnerable neighbours have access to the services and activities necessary for active participation in our community.

How can you help?

Donate: Help us fight Croydon Council’s badly-planned and ineffective Low Traffic Neighbourhood. With your funds we will continue to apply pressure both publically and legally on the decision makers of this scheme. 

www.crowdfunder.co.uk/open-our-roads   

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Note that the adjoining Borough of Bromley has objected to the Croydon closures because of the impact of the closures on their residents. They have been threatening legal action because of the lack of consultation. See this article for more explanation: https://newsfromcrystalpalace.wordpress.com/2020/08/17/bromley-council-threaten-legal-action-against-croydon-over-roadblocks-leader-says-they-will-have-the-barriers-removed-by-order-if-common-sense-isnt-deployed-and-their-street-paraphernalia-removed/

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Crystal Palace Road Closures – Legal Action Threatened

One of the areas hit by road closures by Croydon Council is the Triangle area of Crystal Palace. The roads Sylvan Hill, Stambourne Way and Fox Hill have been closed using the typical “emergency” measures seen elsewhere. But the problem is that this has caused traffic to divert onto roads in the adjacent borough of Bromley.

According to a report in “Inside Croydon” (see https://insidecroydon.com/2020/08/18/bromley-in-legal-moves-against-croydon-over-road-closures/ ) Bromley Council leader Colin Smith has threatened legal action because they were not consulted about these closures. He says the closures are causing “abject misery and inconvenience to Bromley residents on a daily basis”.

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