OPTION 1 – alter the scheme by installing traffic lights on Westgate Bridge, make part of Albemarle Rd two way, and keep the trial going
Westgate Road Bridge – 2 way with traffic lights
Our Association raised with the Council that the new cycleway and the closure of Westgate Rd Bridge to road users northbound did not link up with the long-proposed TfL cycle way at Lower Sydenham planned to go along Worsley Bridge Rd. It appeared that the Council had not considered the linkages between the 2 schemes in designing Albemarle Rd. Cyclists travelling from Bromley from Albemarle Rd to Lower Sydenham would either have to dismount and push their bike over Westgate Rd Bridge where the pavement is not wide enough to do this safely or traverse the hazardous Beckenham Junction which does not have any cycle boxes.
If cycle schemes are to be effective it is essential they are connected to other cycle ways. We are pleased the Council took this on board and have secured funding from TfL put traffic lights on Westgate Rd Bridge so that a more interlinked cycling Quietway can be created from Albemarle Road to Lower Sydenham without cyclists having to negotiate the busy crossroads at Beckenham Junction.
Our Association understands from the Council that the traffic lights installed at Westgate Road bridge will be ‘smart’,monitoring the traffic and adjusting to avoid unnecessary traffic queues.
This is excellent news for all road users, there are very few places to cross the railway line in Beckenham, and having Westgate Bridge back two-way will alleviate congestion at peak time, whilst encouraging cycle use travelling south to north.
It is important to note that TfL will only fund the traffic lights on the bridge as part of a cycle route – if the Albemarle Rd cycle scheme is scrapped the traffic lights will not be provided.
The exact route of the quiet way from Westgate Road Bridge to Lower Sydenham has not yet been finalised and we anticipate there will be opportunity for residents to give their views. Our Association will also be engaging with the Council on this. Please let us know your views at email@example.com
Albemarle Road to Westgate Road reverts to two-way traffic again
The Council propose to make Albemarle Road two-way between Beckenham Junction and Westgate Road. This will mean the sharp turn in the road that was installed to direct Bromley Bound traffic off Albemarle Rd and down St George’s Road, past the Harris Beckenham Green School, will be removed and the junction returned to its original configuration.
This is good news for pedestrians who found it difficult to cross over St George’s Road at this point, with cars having right of way. This will also benefit the school, as rush-hour traffic will no longer be funnelled down St George’s Road
Albemarle Road partially reverting back to two-way traffic, and two-way access over Westgate Road Bridge, will have a significant effect on traffic flows in this part of Beckenham at peak time.
The Council has confirmed that the cycle lane wands on Albemarle Rd will be retained in the section of road that reverts back to two-way. We are following up about the road cleaning around the wands as debris is already building up around them.
The trial will be extended to assess the changes
The Council has confirmed the trial will be extended to assess the changes above. In a few months time residents will have the opportunity to give their views again on the amended scheme.
OPTION 2 – scrap the whole scheme
As the Albemarle Road Scheme is temporary it can be removed in its entirety. However this will mean that TfL will not fund the traffic lights for Westgate Road bridge. We understand that Bromley Council do not have funding to do this independently.
Many readers will be aware of the £700k scheme in Kensington and Chelsea that was removed. In response TfL are reported to have said it would be unlikely to fund any schemes in the borough in the near future. In Beckenham alone there are so many important highways schemes that need funding, a pedestrian phase at the lights by Corner Ways Surgery / Beckenham Theatre, crossings by schools, a crossing by Beckenham Place Park to name a few – none of these are likely to be funded directly by the Council, and without TfL funds may never be realised.
COMPLETE THE SURVEY BY 3 MARCH
- Read the proposal and new road layout maps here
- Complete the survey here
- Let us know your views by email to firstname.lastname@example.org