The people-friendly streets approach is not working

Friday, 3rd December 2021

Exhaust diesel fumes

‘LTNs have caused gridlock on main roads, much longer journeys, much longer journey times, and much more pollution’

• WE all want a cleaner, greener, world and to avert a climate crisis but Islington Council’s implementation of “people-friendly streets” or low traffic neighbourhoods (LTNs) is clearly not working, and Cllr Rowena Champion’s November 26 letter does not address any of the concerns that have been raised recently in these pages.

She has nothing to say about the difficulties faced by local small businesses, put very well by Patricia Michelson of La Fromagerie in her letter of November 12, that have suffered a drastic loss of business as a result of LTNs, nor of the negative impact this is having on the local community.

Do we really want an Islington without the independent shops and other businesses that contribute to its character?

Cllr Champion also ignores the revelation, courtesy of a Freedom of Information request, that an astonishing 75 per cent of respondents in Islington are opposed to LTNs.

No acknowledgement by Cllr Champion, just the same old line about how the council have been listening to feedback consultations. Maybe, but they don’t seem to be acting on the feedback.

Neither does Cllr Champion provide any answer to the many other undesirable consequences of LTNs, as pointed out by G Xylander (Letters) and others.

She ignores the many constituents who are unable to walk or cycle owing to disability or injury, and have few options but to use a car, merely reiterating that there are more people walking and cycling, and less traffic in LTNs.

Well of course! Unfortunately the traffic has not just evaporated.

LTNs have caused gridlock on main roads, much longer journeys, much longer journey times, and much more pollution. Yet Cllr Champion claims this is creating a greener (how?) and fairer (gasp!) Islington.

Try telling that to the unfortunate people who actually live on those increasingly polluted streets and whose lives have just got a whole lot worse thanks to LTNs.

Rather than repeating the same old mantra about creating a greener, cleaner, healthier, safer, Islington, I would like to hear Cllr Champion’s thoughts about and response to the concerns above.

I have written to her directly but have yet to receive a reply to a letter sent over a year ago. I would also like to know how much money has been spent on the implementation of LTNs in Islington.


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