This proposal is part of the new Gospel Oak Streets for people project. The plan includes the introduction of three new ASLs at this junction (Grafton Road already has an ASL). It also adds signal controlled pedestrian crossings at all four arms of the junction.
Camden Cycling Campaign (CCC) welcomes this initiative to improve pedestrian and cycle safety in the area.
In particular CCC is pleased to see that the proposals include advanced stop lines (ASLs) at all four arms of the junction. This is an important measure for increasing the safety of cyclists. The improvement will be quite significant since this junction is on many cyclists’ regular itineraries. In particular, cyclists approaching West Kentish town from the Royal College Street cycle track use Castlehaven Road; Prince of Wales Road is itself an advisory cycle route.
CCC is also pleased to see the proposed introduction of pedestrian crossings on all four arms of the junction which should enhance pedestrians safety.
CCC requests that the council should provide a right turn exemption for cyclists at the junction of Anglers Lane and Prince of Wales Road. This will be useful in enabling cyclists from the Willes Road area to get to Castlehaven Road or to travel west along Prince of Wales Road. Cyclists making this move would be able to cross into the ASL in Prince of Wales Road. Less experienced cyclists are deterred from using Grafton Road by its combination of narrowness, parking, and speed cushions.
CCC would also like the council to consider the feasibility of right turn exemptions for cyclists at the junctions of Grafton Road and Castlehaven Road with Prince of Wales Road. The first is for cyclists coming down Grafton Road and needing to travel westwards. The second is for the reverse of the itinerary described above. CCC recognises that there may be difficulties in introducing this exemption in a manner that is safe for both cyclists and pedestrians.
Cyclists turning right out of Grafton Road could wait on the hatched area to the east of the western pedestrian crossing on Prince of Wales Road before completing their right turns. In a similar way, cyclists turning right from Castlehaven Road could wait on the hatched area to the west of the corresponding pedestrian crossing.
However, the feasibility of our suggestion depends on the phasing of the light signals:
If (1) the green Prince of Wales Road pedestrian crossing phase follows the Grafton Road/Castlehaven Road traffic green phase, then cyclists are likely to be crossing when the lights are green for pedestrians (due to the distance they have to travel from their hatched waiting area). This could be unsafe for pedestrians without a minor added delay before the green pedestrian signal is activated.
If (2) the Prince of Wales Road green phase for traffic follows the Grafton Road/Castlehaven Road traffic green phase, then cyclists may not be able to complete their right turns before the traffic arrives. The distance from the junction is a little further than at a normal cross roads and a slight delay in the signals might enable cyclists to complete their turns safely.
CCC would like to know what the council’s signal phasing plans are and whether these timings might already support cyclist exemption. If this is the case, we recommend that a small cycle logo on the road should be used to show cyclists where they should wait to turn right