Hounslow has received more than £1m from Transport for London to carry out its walking and cycling schemes, more than many of the other of the London Boroughs which have applied for money.
Transport for London has allocated £22.26m to 24 London boroughs for ‘emergency interventions’ such as strategic cycle routes, school streets, low traffic neighbourhoods and pedestrian space in town centres.
The budget has been made available to encourage ‘active travel’, as part of the Mayor of London and central Government’s strategies for responding to the COVID-19 epidemic.
According to the Cycling website Road.cc, the bulk of the money, £12.64m, has been allocated to strategic cycle routes, with £4.29m for low traffic neighbourhoods, £3.56m for space in town centres – things like widening pavements – and £1.75m for school streets.
Money spent in Chiswick
In Chiswick, LB Hounslow bid for money to make changes to Turnham Green Terrace and Devonshire Rd, and to make the area south of the A4 a ‘Liveable neighbourhood.’ That includes the introduction of traffic cameras along Thames Rd, which cost £20,000 each and the installation of signage to create three ‘School streets’ beside Chiswick School, Cavendish Primary School and Grove Park Primary School.
Hounslow has been allocated £352,500 for the introduction of ‘School Streets’ across the borough – ie. closing them temporarily at drop-off and pick-up times to anyone who is not a local resident, to stop parents dropping of their children by car.
The borough has been given £250,000 for creating space for walking and cycling in town centres. Work has already started on that in Chiswick with the installation of big concrete planters and new road signs in Turnham Green Terrace and Devonshire Rd.
TfL has allocated £140,000 to make Chiswick South a ‘Liveable Neighbourhood’ by introducing a variety of measures designed to prevent people just driving through the area to get from Chsiwick Bridge to the A4, avoiding Hogarth roundabout.
It has also earmarked £10,000 to make Wellesley Rd and Stile Hall Gdns a ‘Low Traffic Neighbourhood’, which the council has already done by closing off both roads to through-traffic.
Hounslow comes ninth in the table published by Transport for London for the amount of money they’ve been allocated, with £1,062,500 for nine projects. LB Ealing comes 18th on the list with £205,714 to cover eleven less ambitious projects.
You snooze, you lose
Faced with a barrage of criticism that Chiswick residents hadn’t been consulted, Leader of Hounslow Council Steve Curran told The Chiswick Calendar last week they ‘didn’t have time’ to consult more widely before bringing in the changes in Chiswick as temporary measures under their emergency powers. If they hadn’t acted fast they would have lost the opportunity, he said.
This appears to be bourne out by a comment made by a spokesperson for TfL to cc.road reporter Laura Laker:
“We are checking in with each borough weekly, as the pace of delivery is going to be so fast, so that if there are any delays we can switch the money to other projects” they said.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said:
“We’ve now approved 3 rounds of funding for my #SteetspaceLDN plan to keep our roads free from congestion, supporting 508 projects worth £22m across 24 boroughs: 114 low traffic neighbourhoods, 154 school streets, 202 town centre changes, 38 strategic cycling schemes.
The money handed out by TfL represents about half their budget for walking and cycling schemes, with more to be announced in the coming weeks.
Read More Stories on The Chiswick Calendar
See also: All Chiswick Transport Schemes – details