Brixton Liveable Neighbourhood - improvements for pedestrians and cyclists

Discussion in 'Brixton' started by teuchter, May 8, 2019.

  1. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    On my view of experts.

    I've had over two years of Council officers in Regen. Highly paid experts telling me I was wrong on the Grove Adventure playground.

    Turns out I was right and they were wrong. Its getting 60 plus children a day over this half term. Now the leader of Council has told Regen that land should be kept for youth provision.

    The Council experts kept telling me the site could be developed as their was no demand for an APG in the area.

    I was ridiculed by them for over two years for my insistance it should be kept.

    So no I don't always trust the experts.
  2. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    Technically possible covers pretty much any eventuality. It would be technically possible to build an elevated motorway above Coldharbour Lane, and it might be popular with some people - that doesn't mean it's a good idea.

    'Calming' has comprehensively failed to produce 'liveable neighborhoods' despite many millions being spent on it. The main 'routes' suggested on Ferndale Road, Railton Road and Barrington Road already have humps and chicanes. As do most of the other rat run roads through the entire area. They've not delivered comfortable speeds - funding more of the same seems a huge waste of money.

    *Some* people in LJ want calming. I’m sure some don’t. Some have asked for tracks. Some will ask for Loughborough Road to be closed. The point about Brexit was that nothing you do is going to get full agreement and no opposition. (and your assessment of Brexit as a working class kickback isn't really supported by evidence anyway (Brexit was not the voice of the working class nor of the uneducated – it was of the squeezed middle | British Politics and Policy at LSE)

    Again, Who decides what is “a good idea”? What about if there are two suggestions that are in opposition? (one wants a cycle route through the park, another wants cycles banned from the park). What if someone wants a crossing removed because it slows down motor traffic? What if residents make suggestions that evidence says will fail to achieve their objectives (but are 'technically possible'?).

    Apart from that - if all LJ residents want is a few speed humps they'll get nothing as that won't deliver one of the objectives of the project (on which funding is almost certainly dependent) ie a safe, comfortable walking and cycling route between Brixton and Loughborough Junction.
  3. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    I really am at a loss with your posts.

    What you said about Brexit was:

    Now ur saying:

    Which is different from what you said before.
  4. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    Who said they want a few speed bumps? Not Me.

    A valid interpretation of the project is to produce a liveable neighborhood for everyone in the boundary.

    A boundary that was set with no consultation with LJ residents.

    So some LJ residents as represented by tenants association may have ideas that don't necessarily fit in idea of routes to central Brixton but do fit in with idea of liveable neighborhood. I like others in LJ use the Coop shop on Brixton road and the chemists. So don't always use central Brixton for shopping.

    Why I said I'm afraid that valid ideas will be sidelined as this scheme is about Brixton.
    newbie likes this.
  5. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    So I'm the awkward squad because I support 20 mph speed limit decided by the Council?

    What ru going on about?

    I've noticed in my area LJ , which was against road closures, its the one thing no one I know opposes. Its something that those who supported the road closures and those who opposed them don't argue about.

    That and the ban on heavy goods vehicles and coaches.

    There are areas of agreement between different views on transport.

    These should be built on imo.

    So yes they should be enforced.

    Perhaps then public confidence can be rebuilt and further discussions on change to transport and road use can be restarted.

    It was after all a Council decision to bring in 20mph speed limit.

    Being a member of the "awkward squad" doesn't mean I knee jerk oppose everything the Council proposes or does.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2019
  6. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    I'd love the 20mph limit to be adhered to - I think all cars should have automatic speed limiters built in so that speeding is impossible.

    However, in the meantime - *how* do you think it should be enforced? (this is a problem borough wide - not just in LJ)

    Again, Who decides what is “a good idea”? What about if there are two suggestions that are in opposition? (one wants a cycle route through the park, another wants cycles banned from the park). What if someone wants a crossing removed because it slows down motor traffic? What if residents make suggestions that evidence says will fail to achieve their objectives (but are 'technically possible'?).
    Is that all residents in the area were against? a majority? how was this assessed. I remember reports of some very angry meetings where anyone who tried to speak up for the scheme was shouted down.
  7. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    Your starting to get on my nerves.

    Ive just said I support the 20mph limit. So why are you questioning me about something we both agree on?

    I'm failing to understand what your problem is.

    I'm saying I agree with you on certain issues and you are coming back at me with questions on what I've said I agree with you about.
  8. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    I don't want to repeat myself. Go back and see what I've posted on this.
  9. newbie

    newbie undisambiguated

    That's of only symbolic consequence, people will ride in the park whatever the signs say.:)

    More relevant, there are people on all of the through routes interconnecting a railway infested triangle identifying the same problems and all seeking the same solution- restrictions on through traffic for their street. The reasoning hinges round much the same issues in all the streets, speed, danger, air quality, children and so on (plus house prices, but we don't mention that). So does the solution: stop the traffic, make this street better.

    Gramsci is right, as framed this project is focused on improving quality of life on routes into and through Brixton, not on producing improvements throughout the project area. Closing Railton Road can only be considered because other through routes are available. Why wouldn't the people living on them, and those much more centered on the other two nodes of the HH/LJ triangle want their needs considered? What's in it for them? They're commenting that their streets and their bridge junctions need to be made better. Not worse.

    Who decides that?
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2019
    Gramsci likes this.
  10. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    I don't know if that's true. You won't find many people riding away from the permitted routes through Hyde Park, Hampstead Heath or Wandsworth Common as fines are issued fairly regularly.

    Lambeth's policy (cycling permitted everywhere in parks but not actively encouraged/signposted unless facilities are upgraded) is pretty progressive by London standards.

    Are we talking about the residents of Loughborough Road now? I thought they decided (or people decided for them) that it should remain a busy road.

    Decisions about TfL roads, and designated 'A' roads which form part of the Strategic Road network such as Brixton Road and Coldharbour Lane, are pretty much down to TfL
  11. newbie

    newbie undisambiguated

    No, sorry if I wasn't clear. Look at the map at all the through routes in and around the Herne Hill/Brixton/Loughborough Junction triangle:
    Milkwood Road
    Shakespeare Rd
    Railton Road
    Dulwich Rd/Effra Rd
    and CHL
    have strikingly similar complaints and suggested variants of the same solution, restriction of traffic. The same is true of the bridge junctions in all 3 places.

    Does that mean only TfL should consider their needs and their comments should be ignored?
  12. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    I've actually gone back to read the last few pages of the 130 post thread on the Loughborough Road scheme.

    What's now confusing me is that you seemed to support it at the time, be in favour of measures to reduce traffic, and supportive of Waltham Forest Mini-Holland. That's *exactly* what the Brixton Liveable Neighbourhood scheme is (even if the branding has changed from mini-holland to LN). These are quotes from a few of your posts but I don't think they're out of context.

    I'll admit that class discussions are a bit beyond me - I don't know what constitutes working class any more as the old manual labour distinction has gone and nearly all of us are 'waged'. Moreover a look at the Brixton Liveable Neighbourhood map shows a mix of housing types and estates in all of the wards (though Loughborough has a higher proportion of estates than the others much other estate or housing association isnt marked ). Ferndale Road has Guinness housing and the Edmundsbury Estate at one end and big houses, mostly now private flats at the other. Railton Road is pretty mixed.

    Loughborough Junction public space improvements - consultation begins

    “How supporting unrestricted access to roads for motorised traffic ( for in practise that is the position of those here who opposed the road closures) is supporting the working class is beyond me.“
    “For example one of the earlier discussions here was that these road closures were in working class areas and why not reduce through traffic by doing it in "middle class" areas. Such as at Hinton road? To deter through traffic?“
    “What has happened is that the Council has now caved in completely to the motorist. There will be a further statutory consultation on the "improvements" that the new steering group are formulating. My opinion is that its a farce. All suggestions to reduce road traffic have been ruled out of the discussion. So the new improvements will be motorist first, pedestrians and cyclists second.”

    “Walthamstow "mini Holland”. Waltham Forest Council pushed it through despite opposition. This article suggests its becoming a success. Lambeth have effectively ditched there manifesto committment to making Lambeth a cycle and pedestrian friendly borough. I have seen the Walthamstow Mini Holland as a friend of mine lives in it. It basically stops rat runs. “
  13. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    Great. The project summary on the website says "The residential areas surrounding Brixton town centre are open for ‘rat running’ traffic. The historical layout of the rail network and limited number of crossing points means traffic is funnelled through these. This means local roads, such as Ferndale Road and Railton Road, are disproportionately busy and established ‘rat-runs’. The development of a Liveable Neighbourhood will seek to address these issues and change the way these streets function. Protecting local streets from through traffic will help pave the way for major improvements to Brixton Road that will be needed to create a safer, healthier, more people friendly town centre in the future."
  14. newbie

    newbie undisambiguated

    It's already been decided, the consultation can't change it?
    Gramsci likes this.
  15. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    I'm guessing the engagement process is about the 'how' rather than the what. The high level objectives presumably needed to be set to win the funding.

    Even with something as simple as 'close Atlantic Raod to private cars' theres a long way to go to how the street will look and function.
  16. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    I was referring to my posts from this thread.

    Not what I wrote five years ago.

    I don't know what else to say without repeating previous posts on this thread.

    I have say again and again I'm not against measures to reduce traffic.

    I think that is where your confusion lies. You don't seem to understand that not 100% supporting this Brixton Liveable neighborhood scheme doesnt mean one is opposing all traffic reduction/ traffic calming measures or getting rid of rat runs. I said that all here on this thread.

    One lesson from LJ fiasco is that people when asked want traffic calming measures. Council/ LJAG tried to foist their own pet scheme on a working class Council Estate and they weren't having it. So the whole thing got ditched. That doesn't mean people are against traffic calming and traffic reduction.
  17. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    At the moment you seem to have come down as very negative on this. You say you support traffic reduction and in the past have demanded better for walking and cycling. I don’t get it.

    Traffic calming is bullshit. 10 years of Lambeth’s “resident led” “our streets” programme has spent millions putting in traffic calming because its the lowest common denominator. It’s the only thing everyone will support. That’s because it does nothing. None of the “our streets” areas are dramatically different. None are comfortable for walking and cycling.

    There will be a huge amount of opposition to anything that’s proposed - if there isn’t it’s a sure sign it’s too weak to be effective.

    I’m a cyclist myself, I support cycling but, not this scheme, not this road, not here because of impact on residential streets, not here because of impact on main road residents, imposed on working class area, middle class area pushing traffic elsewhere. People wanting their street gentrified, not wanting this area gentrified. There’s always a reason not to change.

    All that plays into the hands of the motor centric lobby who will fight against anything that restricts their driving.

    no scheme will be perfect. No scheme will have no downsides. you’ve got to decide which side you’re on.
  18. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    I know you don't get it.

    So its back to accusations of supporting the motor lobby.

    BTW I don't own a car. I cycle everyday and use public transport.

    So don't tell me I'm supporting the motor lobby.

    And I walked to doing my shopping today.
  19. newbie

    newbie undisambiguated

    Or me.

    I rather think most people are skeptical about planning schemes and the sweeping claims of single issue evangelists.

    btw I don't think I agree about traffic calming on the backstreets. To my mind there is less traffic and it is moving slower than before the humps started to appear. The 20 limit has improved that further but that alone wouldn't stop people hurtling along straight stretches like the Branksome/Lambert racetrack the way they used to.
    Gramsci likes this.
  20. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    That's correct; I went to at least one of those meetings. I live in Loughborough Junction too.

    I do not agree with Gramsci's view that a majority of residents were against the scheme. Whether we're talking about the whole of the area involved, or just the residents of Loughborough Estate. It can't be proven either way, but there is no evidence that a majority were against.

    Gramsci has become focussed on this as a class issue but while I don't think this part of the picture should be ignored, I think it has become over-emphasised.

    At the time of the LJ closures, I remember saying that if they had been implemented on the "middle class" side of LJ - that is, say Milkwood Rd and/or Herne Hill Road had been blocked, instead of Loughborough Rd (with the same aim of reducing the north/south through-traffic in the area) then the complaint would have been that the residents on those roads were benefitting, with residents on the Loughborough estate being ignored. To some extent that is what we are now seeing with the LN proposal - complaints that there is too much emphasis on central brixton. You can find a class-based argument to oppose a scheme that includes the Loughborough estate area and you can find one that opposes a scheme that excludes it. You can't win - unless you're the car lobby.

    Gramsci I don't disagree with everything you say on this but I do think you are being a bit "awkward squad". There's never going to be a perfect solution or scheme. You know that any attempts to improve things for pedestrians and cyclists always come up against a whole load of opposition. It's frustrating when even those who have previously demonstrated that they strongly support the principles, are adding to the obstacles to things ever changing.
    thebackrow likes this.
  21. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    I"m not claiming that speed humps have no impact, but they don't turn a busy street into somewhere that's good for walking and cycling. Milkwood Road has had at least two traffic calming schemes already and the 85%ile speed over 30mph. All the evidence points to more traffic on backstreets not less as well due to SatNav use.

    I'm not claiming you're supporting but if you oppose schemes like this you're helping them. To return to the Brexit analogy - Green Party peer Jenny Jones voted Leave but for completely different reasons to Nigel Farage. However, a Tory/UKIP led exit for europe will lead to a bonfire of environmental rules. One way or another she's aligned herself with a load of right wing xenophobes without 'supporting' them.

    Lambeth have tried 'resident-led' schemes though Our Streets - Our Streets - The Neighbourhood Enhancement Programme | Lambeth Council - Ferndale ward was one of the first to get the funding. It's got humps all over the place but it's included in the Liveable Neighbourhood area because that simply hasn't worked. As Our Streets worked its way through Streatham over the last couple of years anything radical or effective was quickly eliminated because some people loudly objected to it.

    Your quote from 5 years ago sums it up perfectly "“What has happened is that the Council has now caved in completely to the motorist. There will be a further statutory consultation on the "improvements" that the new steering group are formulating. My opinion is that its a farce. All suggestions to reduce road traffic have been ruled out of the discussion. So the new improvements will be motorist first, pedestrians and cyclists second.” That's exactly what has happened through 5 years of 'resident led' design (following? in response to?) LJ.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2019
  22. newbie

    newbie undisambiguated

    well, and a 20mph limit.

    Who should lead the design? How should the views of 'some people' be recognised and accomodated?
    Gramsci likes this.
  23. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    20mph limit is great but it resulted in an average of just 1mph speed reduction across the borough. Some roads dropped by 3 or 4 mph, some were recording higher speeds after the 20mph limit was put in place.

    Your other question has been answered repeatedly upthread.
  24. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    What you report was completely to be expected tbh. When you get politically motivated blanket speed limits covering an entire borough that take no consideration whatsoever to the characteristics of any individual roads affected, you are always going to get some roads where a 20 mph is widely ignored, simply because it is absurdly low and unfit for purpose. Yet the very same drivers will happily observe the 20 mph limit (and often drive at even lower speeds) on roads that merit such lower speeds.

    A 20 mph on the likes of Railton Road, Coldharbour Lane, LJ area, and all small residential side streets is highly advisable and justifiable. The same limit on many major through roads is too low a limit for the road in question, and in some cases laughably so.
  25. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    We've been through this on other threads, but there are very few roads in Lambeth that (a) there's no reason for anyone to cycle along and (b) there's no reason for pedestrians to want to cross.

    It's not 'laughable' when you're the pedestrian or cyclist trying to use a "major through road".

    In any case, the 20mph limit is widely ignored on roads that are not "major through roads".

    The widespread and endemic problem is inappropriate driving, not inappropriate speed limits. I'm truly fed up with these arguments. I just got home from the shops and watched someone undertake another car at speed, metres from my front door and at a point where people often want to cross the road. And that was just a few minutes after I watched a guy on crutches have to take several steps backwards because a car wasn't going to slow down for him and let him cross.
    Gramsci likes this.
  26. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    Exactly. Inapproprite driving will happen irrespective of the speed limits, and the two scenarios you've just describe will still happen with the culprits travelling under 20 mph. So it does not make the case for far-too-draconian speed policy decisions that are actually more likely to be counterproductive, as it erodes trust in the entire system and and drives (no pun intended) more people into disregarding and breaking the speed limit.
  27. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    No "far-too-draconian speed policy decisions" have been made.
  28. thebackrow

    thebackrow Active Member

    But if there is a collision the vulnerable road user is much more likely to live or not to suffer life changing injuries, and the collision is much less likely to happen because everyone has more time to react and stopping distances are shorter.

    Pretty much any trip inside the north and south circular is quicker by bike than by car - trip time is dictated by signals not by top speed. Pushing past at high speed just gets to you the back of the queue ahead a bit sooner, where the person on the bike catches you up again. It's tortoise and hare stuff. Coming home by car once we saw someone in a distinctive vehicle driving like an arsehole right out at Chiswick - accelerating hard off lights, running through ambers, using the wrong lane to jump a queue. We saw them again at Wandsworth still doing the same and finally found ourselves behind them as we pulled into our own street. All that stupid, dangerous, aggressive driving hadn't given them even 10 seconds of benefit.
  29. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    This is the thing - there are lots of good reasons to reduce speeds but almost no good reasons to increase speeds. Even from the point of view of the car driver's interests - being able to drive 10 or 20mph faster doesn't really get you anywhere more quickly within London. Mostly the only reason to drive fast is impatience, or for fun.
  30. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    Applying a one-speed-fits-all limit over tens of square miles covering roads as different as Kennington Road and a small narrow one way residential speed is every bit as draconian as using the same sentencing guidelines for a guy caught with with 3 spliffs in his pocket, and another carrying 50 kg of marching powder in the boot of his car.

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