Camden Council proposes to carry out works around the Agar Grove / St Pancras Way / Randolph Street junction, to improve conditions for cyclists by either
- upgrading Agar Place and Wrotham Road to allow two-way traffic flow (but no-entry from Agar Grove except for cycles); or
- changing Randolph Street from one-way to two-way traffic flow.
Route 6 runs in a two-way cycle track on the west side of St Pancras Way. There are serious conflicts between southbound cyclists and vehicles turning into Baynes Street.
Following the death of a cyclist at the junction of Baynes Street in 2005, Camden Council made minor improvements at the junction, but near misses are still reported. Either of the current proposals should help reduce the problem.
In proposal (1), southbound cyclists on Agar Grove avoid the junction with St Pancras Way by going round the back and joining it at Baynes Street when the road is clear. Because of the phasing of the lights, there are plenty of opportunities to do this.
In proposal (2), vehicles from Agar Grove will go straight across to Randolph Road (thus avoiding the detour via Baynes Street). Buses will still use Baynes Street (something to do with bridge dimensions). This is CCC’s preferred solution, but risks being turned down at consultation because of loss of parking spaces.
Click here to see the consultation leaflet This link no longer works… and we can’t find the consultation elsewhere on Camden’s website.
We are very pleased to see the proposed measures to increase safety for cyclists in this area. Both alternatives offer improvements to the existing layout. Option 1 allows cyclists from Agar Grove to use a quieter route and to cross the main traffic flow on St Pancras Road at a right angle, which is safer than having to cross at a shallow angle, and avoids the need for a separate cycle phase at the main junction. But it does not help cyclists coming from the north (St Pancras Way) , and so the two-way cycle lane is to be converted to one-way; a retrogressive but necessary step. Further, there will be cyclists who do not wish to take the detour via Agar Place and who will therefore still use the main junction.
Option 2 addresses the root cause of the dangerous situation at the junction of Baynes Street with St Pancras Way by changing Randolph Street to two-way. This should dramatically reduce the amount of traffic making the right turn into Baynes Street.
CCC does not see the two proposals as mutually exclusive and so we request Camden Council to implement them both. This will give maximum benefit to all cyclists, whether timid or confident, and whether they are coming from Agar Grove or from St Pancras Way.
Our second choice would be option 2 (Randolph Street to become two-way), as this addresses root cause rather than symptoms. Failing this, we believe that option 1 has merit, especially for the less confident users.
We have some additional comments:
- Even with Randolph Street two-way, there will be traffic, possibly including buses, turning into Baynes Street, and the cycle lane will still put cyclists in jeopardy. We therefore think that the cycle lane on St Pancras Way between Agar Grove and Baynes Street should be converted to one-way northbound in either option. Cyclists should be encouraged by road markings to enter the cycle lane at Baynes Street as is already shown in option 1.
- We question the need for buses to continue to use Baynes Street as we believe that the bridge over Randolph Street has sufficient height.
- We need to somehow make it clear to motorists (and cyclists) that cyclists carrying on down St Pancras Way will not be expected to use the cycle track. Road markings could help with this.
Camden Cycling Campaign Management Committee
October 15 2008
Following a fatality at the junction with Baynes Street/St Pancras Way, we carried out a sruur
and we commissioned a report from Sustrans