We put in LTNs, which use measures such as traffic filters, to help reduce motor vehicle traffic. With less traffic we aim to improve road safety for all users, encourage travel in more active and healthy ways, support the local economy and make streets nicer places to be, reduce air pollution and improve air quality. LTNs were recommended in our long-term transport strategy agreed in 2019. They were introduced more quickly than planned because of Covid-19.
Impact of the LTN so far
We’ve been keeping track of traffic, air quality and cycling in the Railton LTN, and here’s what we’ve found out:
- Motor vehicle traffic fell by 63 per cent inside the LTN and by 18 per cent when including boundary roads. It fell by 67 per cent on Shakespeare Road and by around 3,000 cars per day on Railton Road.
- Traffic on boundary roads generally reduced: Effra Road and Coldharbour Lane East by Loughborough Junction were down 20 per cent. But Coldharbour Lane West between Brixton and Atlantic Roads was up 16 per cent.
- Cycling rates were high before the LTN and have stayed that way. But on Railton Road they have nearly doubled, increasing by 92 per cent.
- Cycling has slightly increased on routes such as Milkwood Road, Dulwich Road and Brixton Water Lane.
- The LTN has had some impact on air quality and we expect to see more substantial changes over time.
- Reductions in nitrogen dioxide are five times greater in London than elsewhere in the UK, partly due to measures such as the Ultra-Low Emission Zone.
- All the places where we analysed air quality that were classed as sensitive, such as St Jude’s C of E school, Evelyn Grace Academy and Effra Nursery School, had air quality within legal air quality limits.
Improving the LTN
We know that some car journeys are hard to avoid and that the LTN will not solve all traffic issues in the area. Therefore we’ve come up with changes to the LTN that we think will help it work well for everyone if it stays in place.
- Ability to apply for an exemption from one traffic filter for blue badge holders.
- Ability to apply for an exemption from bus gates within LTNs for taxis and fully accessible private hire vehicles.
- Rapid response healthcare providers to be exempt from all filters. Emergency services are already exempt.
- Accessibility improvements to pavements, kerbs and roads spotted through audits and resident feedback.
- Seating and planting outside businesses to encourage more visitors.
- Review of road layouts to increase bus priority and walking and cycling access.
- Review of traffic signal timings and putting back movement bans at junctions where possible.
- Support installation of ‘green screens’ to combat pollution on busy roads for buildings such as schools.
Across the borough we’re also planning activities to support people to walk, cycle and use public transport instead of private motor vehicles. We’re also introducing ultra-low emission vehicles and bikes for council operations.
View PDFs of the LTN monitoring study, appendices and other supporting documents below.