Camden Council proposes a trial closure of Earlham Street at the junction with Shaftesbury Avenue (the closure would not apply to cyclists).
In addition, it is proposed to change the direction of traffic in Tower Street to one-way eastbound (from Earlham Street to Monmouth Street). Therefore, traffic on Earlham Street would be able to exit Seven Dials via Tower Street and Monmouth Street (south). Traffic would also be able to access Shaftesbury Avenue via Mercer Street (west).
The closure would reduce traffic on Earlham Street and Monmouth Street (north) making these streets more attractive as well as encouraging people to walk and cycle. The closure is likely to lead to an increase in traffic on Mercer Street (west); however this route may not be as attractive to use as a short cut. The closure should also help to reduce congestion on Shaftesbury Avenue as currently vehicles turning out of Earlham Street block other traffic approaching the traffic lights.
We are very supportive of the measures to reduce motor traffic in
the Seven Dials area and fully support the proposals. However, we
have an additional suggestion:
Monmouth Street and St Martins Lane provide a convenient and
pleasant route for southbound cyclists heading towards
Trafalgar Square and Charing Cross and we welcome measures to make
it even safer and more pleasant. However, there is no equivalent
return route; the alternatives are either the heavily trafficked
Charing Cross Road, leading to the very unpleasant junction at St
Giles circus, or a long diversion to Bow Street via the Strand
(there is no West to East permeability south of Covent Garden).
Please would you consider the possibility of allowing northbound
cyclists on this route using a lightweight contraflow, as has been
done in other parts of the borough to great success. Given the
expected reduction in through traffic, we believe that this would be
a feasible proposition.