* UPDATE: A public meeting on the proposed scheme and trial will be held at the Queensbridge community centre, 30 Holly Street Dalston E8 3XW, on Thursday 12 November 2015 at 7pm. See also later story
HACKNEY COUNCIL has unveiled a cyclist-pedestrian traffic scheme it admits will be one of the most ambitious in London.
A similar trial in adjacent Walthamstow inspired vigorous protests by motorists.
Already, the influential London Fields User Group (Lfug) is revving up for a protest and the council has already amended its plans, above.
What the council calls “attractive planters filled with winter flowers and shrubs, and where possible trees” will prevent motor-traffic access.
In the area bounded by Richmond Road in the north, Scriven Road in the south, Lansdowne Drive in the east and Haggerston Road in the west, the changes will “mean better places to live for the majority of residents”.
Vehicular access to all streets will be maintained for residents in the area — about a kilometre square.
The proposal aims to make the district quieter and less polluted, as well as safer and easier for walking, cycling and playing.
Sustainability councillor Feryal Demirci, top, at a London Fields cycle campaign, said in a council press release headlined “London Fields road trial to see 16 junctions closed to through-traffic”: “We strongly believe this
exciting project will bring significant improvements for almost everyone living in the area. In Hackney, pedestrians and cyclists come first.”
She adds that “residents will still be able to access their roads by motor vehicle”.
A less-than catchily entitled petition letter, Stop The Proposed Road Closures Hackney London Fields Ward, says that “nobody has been consulted”.
The scheme would push traffic into Richmond, Trederwen and Brougham roads. The council describes the three-month trial, starting in London Fields
in January 2016, as a “formal consultation process in which residents can give their views”.
The press release, however, quotes two members of cycling organisations and no opponents.
It also talks of what “will” rather than “would” happen. A Freudian slip?
David Altheer 301015
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