For anyone living in St Ann’s, our local group Healthy Streets St Ann’s are gathering local residents views on walking and cycling routes in the area, and traffic levels. If you’ve got 2 mins this weekend - would you mind sharing your views in our survey?
About Healthy Streets St Ann’s for more info
Thanks for sharing this. It would of course be very nice to see some action on the issues involved here. There is a section in the survey that asks for proposals, and I thought I might share here some of the proposals that I put in, in case they are useful to anyone:
1. Regulate long unregulated stretches of road, especially on St Ann's Road, West Green Road, and Seven Sisters Road. These long unregulated sections encourage speeding and other dangerous practices.
2. There is an existing regulation that imposes a 20 mph speed limit on all streets in Haringey. It is of course far more frequently violated than observed. At the time that the decision was made not to enforce the speed limit, data were presented showing (unsurprisingly) that an enforced regulation has far greater effect than an unenforced regulation. The decision not to enforce can be changed at any time, to the overall benefit almost everybody in the community (offenders excluded).
3. Street crossings that are regulated by traffic signals are timed, and setting the timing is a policy decision. They are now set to provide a time of about ten seconds that can be used to cross streets. That this amount of time is inadequate seems so obvious as to require no argumentation at all. It is barely enough time for a healthy person who starts off just when the signal turns green to get across, and not at all enough for older people, people with children, people carrying things -- the list goes on. This problem is so easy to correct that the sustained failure to do so boggles the mind.
A point to add: we may be tempted to think (as I have just done) of controlling unhealthy streets principally through repressive measures, such as enhanced traffic enforcement. But probably not even the strongest repressive measures will do much to change the conditions we face now if alternatives to overreliance on cars are not provided. These include improved pedestrian access to sites (anyone who has tried going by foot to the Green Lanes Sainsbury knows what I mean) and adequate public transport provision.
I thought part of the problem is that there isn't a 20 mph limit on all streets - it applies on many but some very busy main roads have higher limits. A lot of those main roads have lots of homes immediately on them as well as on side roads, schools, shops etc. At crossings on West Green Road and St Ann's Road, many of them zebra crossings, I feel that I have to wait and see if cars are actually going to slow down before I start to use the crossing. Where there are lights, I don't know whether car drivers are going to apply their assumed personal exception theories and jump the lights, so again, sometimes it's not safe to use the beginning of a signalled crossing time as a pedestrian. Then there's working out what cyclists are doing - I understand they face issues too but I think changes need to redistribute space from cars, not protect that while taking more space from pedestrians for half-hearted concessions to cyclists.
And the areas near Sainsburys are truly awful, both on Green Lanes and along Hermitage Road, in different ways. How has a private company been allowed to mark off a stretch of pavement as their own private car park - no one should be parking there.
I don’t use the cycle way at Cleveland Gardens or Warwick Gardens anymore because it is a very busy rat run for motor scooters and sick of nearly being hit by them. Complained to a councillor and got an email shrug of the shoulders.
So, good luck!