Camden Council proposes a 20mph area in Swiss Cottage i .e. in :
– an area west of Primrose Hill Road between Adelaide Road and Elsworthy Road-Queens Grove as far as Finchley Road (which includes Avenue Road)
– and an area west of Finchley Road between Boundary Road and Beslsize Road-Fairfax Road.
They also proposing measures which include the following.
– Raised junction at Avenue Road /Elsworthy Road/ Queen’s Grove.
– Zebra crossing at 95 Avenue Road.
– Improve cycle lane at Primrose Hill Road/ Adelaide Road junction.
– Replace the existing speed cushions by road humps.
– Improve the cycle lane from College Crescent to Eton Avenue Market area.
– Introduce cycle contraflow on the northern branch of College Crescent.
– Improve pedestrian crossing points at Greencroft Gardens/ Goldhurst Terrace junction.
– a raised junction on Fairfax Road by the junction with Harben Road.
– Provide road humps on Hilgrove Road westbound.
– Build out the footways to narrow the carriageway at the junction of Fairhazel Gardens with Belsize Road and remove guardrails.
– Provide a zebra crossing over Boundary Road east of the Loudoun Road / Boundary Road junction; build out the footway and narrow the carraigeway. Also add ‘cycle route ahead’ signs (black bike inside a red triangle) on both approaches on Louden Road.
I am writing on behalf of Camden Cycling Campaign, the local borough group of London Cycling Campaign (LCC). We have over 600 members and represent the interests of cyclists living or working in the borough of Camden. We consulted our members by email on this issue and this response reflects the views of the membership.
1. Introduce a 20 mph limit throughout two areas adjacent to the gyratory.
We are very supportive of this proposal. Speed reduction is perhaps the most effective way of improving safety for cyclists and pedestrians. We ask that you also apply a 20 mph limit in College Crescent north for the safety of both with flow and contraflow cyclists.
2. Build a raised table on Avenue Road including the junctions with Queen’s Grove and Elsworthy Road and the existing pelican crossing. Move the police bay in Elsworthy Road.
We studied the (36 months to September 2010) casualty data before a site meeting with Simi Shah in Feb 2011. It includes 7 collisions involving cyclists taking no particular pattern. [6 of the 7 cyclists were heading straight on on Avenue Road (5 heading SE, 1 NW). Of these there were 2 left hooks, 2 hit by an opposing right turning car and 1 by a car turning right out of QG, 1 by an overtaking car that came too close. The 7th cyclist was turning left into Elsworthy and hit by car turning right out of Elsworthy.]
After discussions at the meeting we believed that signals were the best solution. We participated in a CRIM later that year and reached the same conclusions. We are therefore surprised that the signal solution isn’t mentioned in the consultation.
We believe that the proposed raised junction table together with the 20 mph speed limit should improve cyclists safety but are not sure whether it will be sufficient to prevent further casualties. Therefore, we ask that the situation be reviewed after a period of use.
We welcome the re-siting of the police bay which obscures site lines and causes cyclists to move into a poor road position on approach to the junction with Avenue Road.
3. Raised zebra crossing on Avenue Road outside the UCL academy.
We approve of this: we welcome the associated speed reduction.
4. Improve cycle access to the junction of Primrose Hill Road and Adelaide Road by converting a single yellow line to a double to prevent parking in the lead-in lane on Primrose Hill Road south of the junction.
It’s good to see double yellow lines being introduced in a cycle lane – we would like to see more of this. The photo shows a car illegally parked (as it could not legally have crossed the solid line outside the cycle-lane) even though it is a single yellow.
5. Replace speed cushions with sinusoidal road humps at 6 locations in Fellows Road.
This change is Important for cyclist safety because speed cushions cause both cyclists and drivers of other vehicles to take up poor road positions, for example a cyclist may go too close to a car door, or a passing motorist may go too close to a cyclist. We would like to see replacement of speed cushions by road humps throughout Camden.
6. Elliott Square. We have no objections.
7. Improve the cycle lane from Avenue Road leading towards Eton Avenue (and using shared space through the Market with additional signs).
We welcome this proposal as the existing cycle lane became invalid when the storage building was constructed. ( It loops round the building with a blind corner. )
We would like to discuss with you the details of this proposal before it is implemented: we would like to consider how the “shared space” would work at times when market stalls are in place (different layouts for farmers market and general market) and when the space is empty.
We would point out that the “shared space” at this end of Eton Avenue is grossly abused by private motorists using it for free parking and would suggest that the utility, attractiveness and safety of the area would be greatly improved if this were clamped down on
8. Downhill contraflow cycling in College Crescent north.
We welcome this proposal as people felt a loss of routes when the road was made one way uphill in 2007.
However, we do have two concerns. (A) apparently some uphill drivers go too fast which is a hazard for the cyclists they overtake on the way up and possibly could be for contraflow cyclists. As we stated under (1), we ask that a 20 mph speed limit be applied to this road. (B) the two-lane exit of College Crescent where it meets the junction with Fitzjohns Avenue will make it very difficult for cyclists to access the contraflow lane if approaching from the north (which is where in the main they will be coming from); the road space should be narrowed here with one exit lane only meeting the main road more straight on, with more room for cyclists to enter.
Apart from this, we believe that conditions are good for contraflow cycling (double yellow lines on both sides of the road, low traffic flows and adequate width). Please would you let us see the details (e.g. of entry and exit treatments) before the implementation. We are concerned that sight-lines aren’t great and motor vehicles may exit Finchley Road at speed. It may be that a separating island is required.
9. Improvement of pedestrian crossing at the junction of Greencroft Gardens and Goldhurst Terrace.
We agree with this proposal, but are concerned about how it will affect the No Entry exception for cyclists into Greencroft Gardens. The plan indicates that cyclists using this will have to swerve into Greencroft Gardens in a potentially dangerous manner.
10. Raised junction at Fairfax Road/ Harben Road.
We strongly approve this speed reduction measure.
11. Three new speed humps on Hilgrove Road near to Alexandra Road and build out footway to sharpen corner of the junction.
CCC had reported that westbound cyclists on Hilgrove Road often have motorists accelerating to overtake them and then turn left into Alexandra Road. We therefore approve of these speed reduction measures. We would also like to see the corner sharpened on the other side to where the build out is proposed to accentuate that priority is with traffic proceeding along Hilgrove Road and that left-turning traffic shouldn’t just sweep round into Alexandra Road.
12. Build out the footways to narrow the carriageway at the junction of Fairhazel Gardens with Belsize Road and remove guardrails.
We approve of these measures for slowing turning vehicles and those entering the Belsize roundabout, as well as to provide greater accessibility to pedestrians. Cyclists often report problems with the Belsize roundabout: we hope that these measures will solve at least some of them.
13. Provide a zebra crossing over Boundary Road east of the Loudoun Road / Boundary Road junction; build out the footway and narrow the carriageway. Also add ‘cycle route ahead’ signs (black bike inside a red triangle) on both approaches on Louden Road.
CCC had reported that eastbound cyclists on Boundary Road often face southbound motorists disregarding the give way on Loudoun Road). We hope that these changes will solve the above problem as well as helping pedestrians.
14/15. Parking changes: we have no objections.
Other related issues
ASL and feeder on Winchester Road. This is seriously in need of a repaint.
Cycle Route Signage. CCC carried out an audit of signage in the Swiss Cottage area in June 2012. It was sent to Brian Deegan on 27th July 2012. We were under the impression that signage improvements would be made as a part of the Swiss Cottage area improvements. Please confirm that this is the case.
Recent changes at junction King Henry’s Road/Harley Road. We note that single yellow lines have been painted on the two corners of the junction. These should be double yellow lines.