Newham Council have now belatedly provided information about the removal of CS2 at Tramway Avenue. Â The documents provided confirm the story of TfL that the changes were driven by Newham Council because of “confusion” and “driver misbehaviour” and also reveal that theÂ cycle lane was removed in the face of a safety audit pointing out the reduction in the protection for cyclists.
Nevertheless the Council’sÂ subsequent conduct can only be described as grossly misleading. Â Here is the statement made to the Newham Recorder published onÂ Â 3 December. Â :
“CS2 route was removed by TfL, not the council, who only closed the risky sliproad.”
In fact Newham Council was theÂ driving force behind theÂ removal the protected cycle lane. Â If it was just a case of closing the sliproad there would have been no need at all to remove CS2. Â Newham Cyclists would welcome the closing ofÂ Tramway Avenue. Â It is one of ourÂ long term aims.
“Following concerns raised by the police and cyclists and a number of serious near misses on this route, a decision to close the Tramway Avenue sliproad was taken in September”
In fact the documents provided by both TfL and Newham Council do not reveal any concerns by cyclists, particularly in its latest – “wands” version. We shall be following this up.Â The police did raise concerns at an early stage but participated in the safety audit that took place. Â The “risky” sliproad remains open.
“We value the views of Newhamâ€™s cycling community and are committed to ensuring that there are safe cycling routes in the borough”
WhyÂ Â not, then, consult on this high profile action to revert back to a dangerous junction layout for cyclists?Â The Council have resisted since 2009 our suggestion for a cycling liaison group and consistentlyÂ resistÂ our suggestions for greater safety such as 20mph. The Council’s values and the level of their commitment can be judged by their actions rather than their words.