Results of Hounslow to Brentford Cycleway Consultation Published

Feedback shows concern over possible congestion and island bus stops

Visualisation of a new road layout by Brentford Bridge from TfL


More Money Available for Completion of Cycleway 9

Plans for Cycleway in Brentford and Isleworth Published

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April 5, 2023

Transport for London (TfL) has published a report on a consultation held earlier this year on a proposed cycleway between Hounslow and Brentford High Streets.

There were 1103 responses from members of the public and stakeholder organisations to the survey that was held between 5 January and 16 February.

The report does not give details of the overall level of support or opposition to the scheme but says that the most frequently raised issues were a possible negative impact on traffic congestion/air quality, lack of value for money due to low usage, pedestrian safety due to lack of crossing points and reduced accessibility particularly due to the use of bus island bypasses which many felt would make the elderly and disabled feel unsafe.

The second question on the survey asked respondents to provide their thoughts about any changes they might want to see to the scheme, and also any issues the proposals might cause. A quarter mentioned traffic congestion, and 15% had safety concerns relating to the bi-directional sections of the plan, bus stop islands and lack of crossing points. 10% of respondents expressed support for the scheme in this section.

There was an error in the collection of data in the early stages of the survey but 54% of the people responding described themselves as living near the route and 34% as someone who cycles or might cycle in the area. Originally the intention was that people could enter more than one field in this section but only 42% of respondents were able to do so.

Once the comments in the survey have been considered by TfL, it says it will hold a second consultation later this year with more detailed proposals including extra information about the impact on traffic flow particularly on bus journey times.

The scheme would link to the section of Cycleway 9 currently being built between Watermans Park and Kew Bridge. This is expected to open later this year.

Amongst the stakeholder organisations giving feedback was Age UK Hounslow which said it was generally understanding of rational for the cycleway and was supportive of proposed pedestrian improvements including on Kingsley Road and Bridge Road Junction. It expressed concerns over the use of two-way cycleways, as they can present access issues for elderly pedestrians, especially around bus stops. It suggested the addition of a pedestrian crossing before Spring Grove Junction to access shops on the other side of London Road.

RATP Dev London, London United & London Sovereign responded to the survey by saying that the removal of the westbound bus lane on London Road would delay bus services and reduce passenger numbers.

The Heston Fire Station Commander expressed overall support for the scheme commenting that it would enhance the safety of cyclists and pedestrians and would not negatively impact the station. There was some concern about the potential build-up of traffic blocking the junction as a result of relocating the pedestrian crossing closer to Spring Grove Road junction.

Hounslow Cycling strongly supported the proposal commented that this was a dangerous road for cyclists and walkers and that the proposed changes would make it much safer, welcoming TfL’s commitment to reducing vehicle speeds on turning at junctions and attention to improving road crossings for pedestrians.

Speak Out in Hounslow said that the cycle lane and positioning of bus stops are not accessible for wheelchair and pushchair users, and that it is dangerous crossing the cycle lane – made even more difficult during rush hours and busy periods.

Hounslow Borough Friends of the Earth wanted to see more measures to protect pedestrians and felt that walking and public transport were impaired by the removal of bus stops/lanes and narrowing vehicle space. They felt that shared use paths should be minimised as they are threatening to pedestrians; if they are necessary cyclist behaviour needs to be monitored. They also wanted confirmation on the provision of the proposed new trees and suggested that alternative cycling routes away from main roads be considered.

The Isleworth Society commented that the proposals placed more emphasis on accommodating cyclists than pedestrians or public transport users and felt that mitigation was needed to prevent delays to buses. It added that there was no evidence of modelling data to show the effects on the bus network by the removal of bus stops and lanes and the relocation bus stops, and suggested that without an Equality Impact Assessment, consultation was premature.

The St John's Residents Association was similarly concerned about bus journey times due to the removal of bus lanes. It also felt that the relocation and removal of bus stops would have a large impact on users. For example, the relocation of the westbound Isleworth station stop would place it outside one of the busiest shops on the parade and near a post box, bike racks and bins, and directly opposite the junction with Avenue Road. In addition, the association expressed concern about the mature trees that were to be removed and were not convinced that any replacements would not make up for the loss of well-established trees.

Middlesex Association for the Blind supported the scheme and, having discussed the issue of bus stop bypasses, raised no concerns about them.

Hounslow Borough Respiratory Support Group was supportive of improved pedestrian crossings but was concerned about bus bypasses, crossing a two-way cycle track, which was seen as unsafe and cyclist behaviour.

On the issue of bus stop bypasses (BSBs) , TfL responds in the report, “While it is acknowledged that such layouts have the potential to introduce ‘conflict’ between pedestrians and cyclists, numerous measures which follow TfL and national design guidance are implemented as standard at BSBs to effectively and safely manage this conflict and reduce risk. Such measures enable pedestrians to cross the cycle track in the exact same way as they would a regular carriageway.”

In response to concerns about the issue of two-way operation of the cycle lanes, TfL responded in the report by saying, “Both bi-directional and with-flow cycle facilities have been implemented extensively across London and both are considered appropriate depending on the context and street environment in which they are implemented. This approach is supported by TfL's London Cycle Design Standards and the Department for Transport's Cycle Infrastructure Design (LTN 1/20) guidance.”

It is understood that, at the moment, no funds have yet been identified for the construction of the scheme.

The details of the consultation report can be accessed here.

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