As part of its Streets for People initiative, the council is proposing the addition of new pedestrian crossings or the improvement of existing ones in Guilford Street. For example, they propose to raise and narrow the crossing outside Coram’s Fields.
Guilford Street is part of a widely used LCN route that links up with the Royal College Street route via Marchmont Street to the north as well as joining a variety of routes to the east.
Given that the council claims it is using a streets for people approach looking at all the traffic and transport needs of the area, this proposal is rather myopic… nothing for cyclists, yet this is hardly an ideal street for cycles.
Question 3. Are you in favour of the proposed proposed disabled bay on Guilford Street? yes.
Question 4. Are you in favour of the proposed raised crossing point on Lansdowne Terrace? yes.
Question 7. Are you in favour of the proposed new bench on Guilford Street? yes.
(the answers to the other questions are included in the response below)
Given that the council claims it is using a streets for people approach *looking at all the traffic and transport needs of the area, it is disappointing that this proposal includes nothing for cyclists, yet this is hardly an ideal street for cycles.
Cyclists experience considerable difficulties with two right turns:
Cyclists travelling east along Guilford Street experience difficulties making the right turn into Lamb’s Conduit St. We suggest that green surfacing, cycle logos and advisory cycle lane markings could be used on the left-hand side of Guilford Street with a shallow (i.e. 5-10 degree) diagonal cycle lane marked across the carriageway to lead into a cycle lane in the centre of Guilford Street on the approach to the turn. This lane in the centre of the road would ideally terminate opposite Lamb’s Conduit Street with a traffic island and bollard.
The right turn from Guildford St into Lansdowne Terrace has always been problematic for less confident cyclists. Ideally this junction would be signalled with an advance stop line. If an ASL cannot be provided, we suggest a similar solution to the Lamb’s Conduit Street turn described above, although it may be necessary to remove a few parking bays in Guilford Street just to the west of the junction to allow adequate road space.
We have replied by ticking the boxes for your questions 1-7, but would like to add something to some of our answers to deal with the effects on cycling.
Question 2. Are you in favour of the footway widening on Guilford Street between Lansdowne Terrace and Mecklenburgh Place?
Camden Cycling Campaign (CCC) has replied yes to this question in consideration of the fact that this footway is outside Coram’s Fields, but in general CCC wishes to register its opposition to too frequent widening of footways, which results in reduced space for cycling on the road.
We suggest that the footway should be raised across the two entrances to Coram’s Fields so that pedestrians have a level pavement.
According to your plans, this pavement widening leaves the north side of Guilford Street narrower than the south side (only 3.1m). This will make it very difficult for cyclists travelling east between Lansdowne Terrace and Lamb’s Conduit Street. The existing island and road centre markings just west of the junction of Guilford and Lamb’s Conduit Street should be moved to the new centre line of the carriageway to facilitate the right turn by cyclists. (See also our suggestions above.)
Question 5. Are you in favour of the proposed raised zebra crossing on Guilford Street, approximately 12 m east of Grenville Street? CCC replied yes.
However, we understand that the distance between the island and the kerb will 3.4 m. This dimension will make it difficult for cyclists to coexist with other vehicles on the approach to the crossing. CCC is therefore opposed to the central island.
Question 6. Are you in favour of the proposed raised zebra crossing on Guilford Street, at the pedestrian entrance to Queen’s Square? CCC replied yes.
CCC is aware that partly due to the encouragement of cycling by the National Hospital in Queen’s Square, there is a clear demand for a cycle route north using the pedestrian link between Queen’s Square and Guilford Street. This would require a contraflow cycle lane on Guilford Street and up Grenville Street. Both contraflows would require the removal of some parking bays to free road space and reduce the risk of cyclists being hit by opening car doors.
Bernard/Grenville Street junction
This junction is not on your plan, but is very close to Guilford Street.
Cyclists travelling south down Marchmont Street and using Grenville Street have difficulty with turning right at the Bernard Street/ Grenville Street junction and subsequently in moving to the left lane in Grenville Street. A solution would be to have pedestrian zebra crossings on speed tables across the two arms of this junction. This would have the effect of slowing down the traffic and thereby allowing cyclists to make the right turn and if necessary to change lanes.