The proposals for this junction include the following major changes:
- Widening the footway surrounding the entrance to the underground station, both on Tufnell Park Road and Brecknock Road, as well as the western footway of Dartmouth Park Hill (near Burghley Road where the school pupils congregate after school).
- Removal of central islands on all roads at the junction. This allows for more road space to be given to mark a dedicated cycle lane on approach to the junction where cyclists are more vulnerable or in some cases to provide an additional traffic lane to reduce delay to buses.
- Implementing two new diagonal crossings providing a direct link from east to west, from the school side to the bus stops on Tufnell Park Road and the underground station. These would allow pedestrians to cross in one stage instead of crossing two roads before reaching their destination.
- Widening the existing crossings to accommodate more pedestrians to cross comfortably at the same time.
- Extend double yellow lines on the western side by 16m up to 227/229 Brecknock Road to prevent vehicles parking at this location which will result in traffic congestion due to narrow width of carriageway
- Banning the right turn from Junction Road into Dartmouth Park Hill.
- Marking advanced cycle stoplines on all approaches including mandatory cycle feeder lanes on Junction Road and Tufnell Park Road.
- Banning the left turn from Brecknock Road into Fortess Road.
- Provision of a ‘Keep Clear’ road markings opposite Burghley Road to assist with cyclists turning right out of the side road.
- Provision of pedestrian countdown timers and a pedestrian only stage allowing pedestrians to cross all roads whilst all other traffic is stopped.
See consultation on Camden’s website at:
CycleScape discussion :
Camden Cycling Campaign
24 January 2019
Response to Consultation on Tufnell Park Junction Improvements
This response to the consultation on proposed Walking and Cycling Improvements at Fortess Road/ Dartmouth Park Hill/ Junction Road/ Tufnell Park Road/ Brecknock Road signal junction is from Camden Cycling Campaign, the local borough group of London Cycling Campaign. We represent the interests of cyclists living or working in the Camden and aim to expand the opportunities for all to cycle safely in the borough. We have discussed this consultation by email and online (using Cyclescape) and a meeting of Camden Cycling Campaign on 21 January 2019.
This junction on the border of Camden and Islington has long been a substantial barrier to cycling. Its position makes it very hard to bypass for people cycling between the Dartmouth Park and Tufnell Park areas and Camden Town or Central London. It is also very close to several large state secondary schools. Objective 6 of Camden’s Draft Transport Strategy includes an aim to take ‘specific measures in and around schools to both improve road safety and enable increased walking & cycling to school’. A reasonable aim would therefore be to make this junction safe for pupils and staff travelling to the secondary schools in the area to traverse it on bicycles unaccompanied.
This proposal does too little to further that aim – if this scheme is aimed to provide a long-term “fix” for the junction, it is opposed; if it is an interim scheme to provide pedestrian enhancements, it is supported. Either way, further substantial revisions to this junction will be needed in the near future in order to advance Camden’s Transport Strategy, the Mayor’s Transport Strategy and TfL’s Healthy Streets and Active Travel agenda.
This statement is supported by the TfL’s Strategic Cycling Analysis Fig 2.1 which shows that the Fortess Road – Junction Road alignment is currently in the top 5% busiest cycling connections. Therefore this work should be used as an opportunity to provide support for cycling across this junction at least on this alignment.
Meanwhile some complementary measures are proposed below for inclusion in this scheme, providing bypass routes for cyclists not wishing to face the considerable risks at this junction.
Our response to the proposed changes
Removal of central islands
The central islands currently in place have the following benefits:
- A refuge for pedestrians: we take it that the need for this is minimised by the introduction of diagonal crossings and countdown signals.
- Slowing of motor traffic: this is perhaps an unintended effect but it is observable, especially at times with little congestion or oncoming traffic. A possible remedy could be to construct the junction on a raised table.
- An informal refuge for cyclists attempting right turns in the presence of heavy traffic in both directions: another unintended but observable effect. We are very concerned about the lack of provision for right-turning cyclists in the proposed design.
- Protection for cyclists from turning vehicles overrunning their lanes.
Left- and right-hook risks
These two types of collision are a predominant cause of serious and fatal collisions involving cyclists. There were two serious collisions involving cyclists in the proximity of the junction in the last 3 years. They are a particular concern at this junction, with its five arms and many turning vehicles of all types.
The proposed design does very little to reduce these very substantial risks for cyclists. It would certainly generate multiple ‘critical fails’ on the criteria specified in the London Cycle Design Standards and the Healthy Streets specification. The London Cycle Design Standards contain extensive advice on the junction design to avoid this particularly serious type of collision.
Proposed additional lane for motor vehicles on Fortess Road
Fortress Road currently has a single lane on the approach to the junction. In keeping with the stated aims of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy, the additional carriageway space gained by removing the central refuge island should be used to provide mandatory (protected) cycle tracks and not an additional traffic lane. By retaining a single approach lane, segregated lanes could be provided for cyclists approaching and leaving the junction via this arm.
The proposal extends footway space at several points. We concur with most of these because pedestrian space is unduly cramped, but we don’t see a need for it on the south side of Tufnell Park Road. The existing cycle parking at that location could be moved onto the carriageway, creating a less cluttered area of footway.
Other cycling-specific measures
The proposed mandatory ASL feeder lanes on Junction Road and Tufnell Park Road are welcome. However, to ensure they are effective (kept clear of any parked or stopped vehicle), full or light segregation should be introduced. It is envisaged that the protected feeder lanes could begin immediately downstream of the bus cages closest to the junction. But it should stop on approach to the junction to allow people not turning left to move out.
The introduction of advanced stop lines on all arms of the junction is welcomed. However, to ensure these are effective, they must be accompanied by early release cycle signals, which will allow cyclists in the ASL to clear the junction and avoid dangerous hooking manoeuvres.
The proposed pedestrian all-green phase and the diagonal pedestrian crossings to the tube station look useful. We support those measures.
Safe alternative routes
If officers are unable to devise a scheme that makes the junction safe for vulnerable users then additional mitigation measures are needed in the wider area which allows the junction to be bypassed or traffic to be reduced. For instance, there is no safe pedestrian or cycling crossing on Junction Road beyond the junction for at least 400 meters until after Monnery Road. Similarly, there is no safe cycle crossing of Brecknock Road. Anyone not confident to cycle through what will remain a dangerous junction, but willing to take a less direct route to avoid it, needs to be enabled by the availability of safe or accessible alternative routes.
There is no proposal in the scheme to reduce traffic. For example there are no proposals to filter Dartmouth Park Hill or Tufnell Park Road and keep through-traffic onto the A roads. We believe that proposals to achieve traffic reduction should be tested in a public consultation.
With the proximity of Acland Burghley it is not unreasonable to ask that the school be made accessible for children of the age of 12 to be enabled to cycle safely to school from the locality. If the junction cannot be made safe then it should be explained what alternative provision is envisaged.
We have worked with Cycle Islington to arrive at the shared views expressed here.
Please acknowledge receipt of this response. We would be very happy to discuss any aspect of our comments; contact details are below.
George Coulouris, John Chamberlain, Jean Dollimore