Five Croydon roads are to be closed to motor traffic from Sunday under special coronavirus emergency legislation, in efforts to make streets more pedestrian and cyclist-friendly and to open up new cycle routes for use by key workers riding bikes to work at Mayday Hospital.
The council’s propaganda department finally got round to issuing a press release with the detail of the closures nearly 48 hours after cabinet member Stuart King had first made public the plans for widening pavements and reducing car parking spaces, and as was first reported by Inside Croydon.
In the press release (which the council’s press department did not send to Inside Croydon), they said, “The temporary schemes… aim to reduce rat running in residential roads, improve road safety and better facilitate social distancing.”
The closures, which the council described as “a new initiative” (sic), are to last for 21 days. The roads affected are:
- Holmesdale Road at the junction with Park Road (stadium side)
- Dalmally Road at the junction with Blackhorse Lane
- Elmers Road at the junction with Blackhorse Lane
- Lancaster Road at the junction with Southern Avenue
- Woodvale Avenue at the junction with Avenue Road
“Road markings will be used to create a turning circle at the bottom of affected roads, enabling access to be maintained for residents and for any essential journeys,” the council says.
And it continues: “To further aide [sic] residents in social distancing during lockdown, parking is set to be suspended outside some shops in the borough’s district centres to enable barriers to be installed to increase space for queuing shoppers and pedestrians.”
The first barriers are being installed outside Tesco Express on Portland Road, South Norwood, and between numbers 61 and 87 and 243 and 257 on London Road, Broad Green.
A 20mph speed limit is to be introduced on London Road and a cycle lane installed to improve road safety and encourage more essential journeys to be made by bicycle.
“We are responding to growing concern that since lockdown began vehicle speeds have increased on certain routes around Croydon and these temporary low traffic initiatives will help create safer spaces for residents walking and cycling near their homes,” said Stuart King, the cabinet member for environment and transport.
“At this challenging time, residents must continue to follow social distancing guidelines and temporarily widening footpaths will make it easier for pedestrians and shoppers to safely share the space outside shops.
“Although only essential journeys can be made during this time, it’s important we maintain road safety for those who have to travel and the reduced speed limit and new cycle lane on London Road will, we hope, contribute to this.”
King has not ruled out making any of the schemes permanent after the lockdown if they prove to be successful.
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