Update to proposed changes to roads around Tooting Common

For the full background, see our previous post on proposed changes to roads around Tooting Common.

When we were told about the proposed changes it was not clear if the council would be conducting any consultation, so we launched our own survey to see how people felt about the changes. With the help of local volunteers (thank you!) we delivered letters notifying people about the changes and providing a link to our survey to every home on:

  1. Montana Road
  2. Avoca Road
  3. Elmbourne Road
  4. Hillbury Road
  5. Louisville Road
  6. Streathbourne Road
  7. Drakefield Road
  8. Manville Road

To date we have had 273 responses! Many thanks to those who completed the survey, it was vital data.

The results from our survey were fairly clear:

  1. For the two right turn bans, there was a clear negative view: 70% of people were against, 20% in favour, and 10% undecided.
  2. For taking the parking off the pavement and back onto the road on Elmbourne Road, it was pretty much even: 37% in favour, 39% against, 24% undecided.
  3. For all the other measures, there was a clear positive view: about 50% in favour, 25% against and 25% undecided for each.

We have been told by the council today that the two right turn bans will not be taken forward at this stage.

Next steps

Item 3 on our previous post had two parts to it:

  1. upgraded traffic calming and informal crossings on Dr Johnson Avenue; and
  2. a raised table at the junction of Elmbourne Road and Louisville Road to enable safer crossing for pedestrians (and in particular students from St Anselm’s primary school).

These two changes are going to be implemented right away.

In respect of items 4, 5, 6 and 7 from our previous post, the council is going to send a letter to the “local area” (we are not sure which roads this will cover) to inform residents of the other measures and invite comments. Provided the overall pattern of comments is positive then the council intends to implement those changes too.

One response to “Update to proposed changes to roads around Tooting Common”

  1. Apologies for my delayed response. I send it anyway just in case it may come in useful:

    1. Dr Johnson’s Avenue is a well-used route for cars going in both directions. People using the common cross at different points of the road and there are traffic calming bumps all the way along to keep traffic at a safe speed. Measures could be introduced to ensure the slowing of traffic at strategic points.

    2. The no-right turn from Tooting Bec Road (northbound traffic) onto Dr Johnson’s Avenue and Elmbourne Road would mean that all northbound traffic heading for Balham would be diverted a) onto Garrard’s Road along Tooting Bec Common and then down Bedford Hill; or b) as there is already a no right turn from Tooting Bec Road into Balham High Road, the first feasible turn towards Balham from Tooting Bec Road would be a right turn onto the very narrow Trinity Crescent (opposite a fire station!), or Upper Tooting Park. This would cause massive congestion a) towards the bottom of Bedford Hill and clog up that part of Balham around Sainsbury’s car park (already very busy), and b) along the already very busy and slow Trinity Road, potentially delaying the exit of fire engines.

    3. The banning of on-pavement parking on both sides of Elmbourne Road would further narrow the road, reducing the capacity of traffic and creating unnecessary clogging up of traffic trying to enter Elmbourne Road from Louisville Road and Drakefield Road in particular, but possibly also the other roads perpendicular to Elmbourne Road.

    I believe these proposals are ill thought-through and that the Council and TfL are considering the voices of a few residents and not paying heed to the needs of the wider community.

    If the council are keen to improve the conditions on the common and the safety of those who want to get onto it, Imake the following suggestions:

    a. Introduce two zebra/pedestrian crossings on Dr Johnson’s Avenue by the car park and by Hillbury Avenue. In this way, families with young children, the elderly and people with dogs can cross safely in two places. Apparently the council’s “Traffic Management Policy” requires a certain volume of people to justify a pedestrian crossing. We are not told what this ‘certain number’ is, nor why the policy cannot be changed in this instance in order to provide proper safe crossings rather than ‘informal crossings’ which speeding and reckless drivers ignore.

    b. Eliminate pavement parking on one side of the road only. Consider the possibility of widening the pavement by about a metre onto the Common. In this way, people would be provided with one pavement wide enough for buggies, wheelchairs etc.

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