Tulse Hill Low Traffic Neighbourhood

The Tulse Hill LTN helps to make it safer and easier to walk, wheel, scoot and cycle by stopping cars, vans and other vehicles from using quiet streets as shortcuts.

The trial

In 2020, we introduced the Tulse Hill Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN) on a trial basis to help people travel safely whilst capacity on public transport was dramatically reduced due to COVID-19. Although the LTN was accelerated as part of the pandemic emergency response, Tulse Hill was also a strategic part of the council’s 2019 Transport Strategy Implementation Plan to achieve a 27% reduction in traffic across the borough by 2030.

To form the LTN, five planters (image here) which act as traffic filters were introduced on the following roads:

  • Arodene Road
  • Leander & Helix Road
  • Elm Park & Craignair Road
  • Roupell & Upper Tulse Hill
  • Cotherstone Road & Holmewood Gardens

People walking, wheeling, cycling, and scooting are able to access the LTN through any traffic filter. Blue Badge holders as well as taxis, refuse collection vehicles and emergency services can apply for a dispensation to access one traffic filter location – however, the traffic filters were designed to prevent other cars, vans and motor vehicles from using quiet streets as shortcuts. Following a grace period, motorists who drove through traffic filters began to receive fines.

LTNs make it safer and easier to walk, wheel, scoot and cycle by increasing feelings of safety, reducing air pollution and making local destinations more appealing. Over time, LTNs can encourage people to switch from driving to healthier and more sustainable ways of travelling. This is one impactful way we can tackle the climate emergency in Tulse Hill and throughout Lambeth.

Lambeth commissioned independent transport consultancies (including SYSTRA, MHTC and The Floow) to collect data on changes to traffic volume and air quality throughout the trial. You can read the Tulse Hill LTN monitoring stage 2 report. Analysis of the data demonstrates that:

  • Overall, traffic reduced by 2%, or 2,000 vehicles a day, when measuring traffic volumes on all the roads within the LTN and on the boundary roads.
  • Traffic reduced by 31% on internal streets. On external streets (boundary roads) it increased by 6%.
  • Traffic has reduced by 73% on Elm Park and by 89% on Cotherstone Road, which has two schools. It increased by 27% on Brixton Water Lane.
  • Cycling has increased by 107% on internal roads and by 67% on external roads.
  • All the places where we analysed air quality that were classed as sensitive, such as outside schools and care homes, had air quality within legal limits. This includes sensitive sites on boundary roads.
  • Overall air quality in Lambeth is improving, partly due to measures such as the Ultra-Low Emission Zone. We expect to see greater improvements over time.

From November – December 2021, we held a consultation to hear people’s views on the trial. Some positive comments included:

  • Less aggressive traffic and less rat-running (motor vehicles cutting through residential neighbourhoods to avoid traffic on main roads)
  • Reduction in traffic noise throughout the LTN
  • Quieter streets considered more pleasant and safer

Some residents had concerns about:

  • An increase in vehicle traffic on boundary roads
  • Traffic volumes and flows negatively impacted by ongoing road works
  • Short journeys taking longer
  • Quieter, car-free streets feeling less safe

Following a thorough analysis of consultation responses and monitoring data, we have decided to make the Tulse Hill LTN permanent. We’ve taken residents’ concerns into account by:

Our next steps, including how residents can be involved, are outlined below.

Future Plans

Before designing and constructing several new and upgraded schemes within the LTN, we are consulting with the local community to better understand their needs and thoughts on potential new features. 

We will upgrade existing traffic filters at 5 different locations: Elm Park, Leander Road, Roupell Road, Arodene Road and Cotherstone Road. Tulse Hill will also be benefiting from several wider improvement schemes, including disability access improvements, cycling parking and greening. These changes will be added to our Commonplace page in the near future to gather the community’s thoughts and opinions.

We’ve also allocated collaborative design budget for larger-scale public realm improvements on Elm Park and the junction of Upper Tulse Hill and Claverdale Road. Collaborative design will allow residents to contribute ideas and share their views on changes and upgrades from the very start of the design process. The two collaborative design sites were carefully selected using the following criteria: 

1. Level of deprivation. We prioritise work in areas with higher levels of deprivation to reduce inequalities related to air pollution, car ownership and access to green space. 

2. Alignment with Lambeth’s Kerbside Strategy. We prioritise sites that offer more potential to implement Lambeth’s Kerbside Strategy.  

3. Proximity to a Lambeth Healthy Route. We prioritise sites that lie directly on a Healthy Route or act as a link to a Healthy Route.  

4. Potential to support community and business activation. Active, sustainable travel helps businesses and community groups flourish – check out the economic benefits of walking and cycling

5. Climate resilience. Greening our neighbourhoods will help protect against the impacts of climate change. We therefore prioritise sites that can accommodate greening and SUDS (Sustainable Drainage Systems). 

An online consultation where residents can contribute ideas for changes on Amesbury Avenue and Palace Road/Daysbrook Road was open from 16 January to 28 February 2023. To reach as many people as possible, we encouraged residents to submit their hand-written ideas to our neighbourhood mailboxes. Council officers have also been organising in-person engagement events, including leafletting, door-knocking and stakeholder workshops.

Results from the consultation period will soon be shared with the public as an update on Commonplace. The results will be used alongside event and workshop feedback from the public to inform designs.  

We expect construction of the permanent LTN to begin in winter 2023. You can stay up to date with the latest project developments on Commonplace.