Thanks to Ant at the Harringay Ladder Living Streets Group for the following.
After the changes to Wightman Rd, to add all the wiggly sticking out bits, there was an independent safety audit done. It's taken a some time to get hold of it, here it is attached.
In a nutshell, I think it says there are parts that are now not safe. The council have proposed some remedies, some of those are deemed not good enough.
One of the remedies is for the council to monitor reports of 'near misses' for a year to see if there really is a problem. Pretty much every time I've used Wightman on bike or driving I've had some near misses - a close pass, or having to brake to avoid oncoming traffic entering my side, so might be worth finding out what would be classified as a near miss and how to report them.
Full report attached below.
One thing is clear, they want less amenity for locals so the cars can have a better line of sight coming out of the "rat run" roads. Sad to see mention of more tree and parking having to go to facilitate this.
In 27 pages, the only material mention of cycling or cyclists on Wightman Road... and it was essentially dismissed.
"The chicane problem highlighted in 3.2.2 also causes issues for cyclists who have to follow the line of the traffic out towards the opposing lane, although not witnessed during the audit this has been raised by a resident.”
I guess it's something of a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you make it bad for cycling then there won't be many cyclists on there so you won't see cyclists having issues.
I've no occasion to ride along Wightman at the minute but from experience the layout definitely favours the confident cyclist who will sit primary come what may, regardless of abuse from behind.
If you have any doubts at all, you're going to avoid it like the plague - I'd rather take my chances getting doored or walked out on down the Lanes.
Indeed. I was driving along there the other day and was behind a cyclist who was pretty far over to the left. I still sat behind them for a while as it's obviously too narrow to pass safely with oncoming traffic. After I'd gone past I looked back in my mirror and saw a load of other cars just squeezing past with traffic in both directions. It's definitely not a safe road if you're not willing to sit in primary and stop the cars behind from squeezing by.
The pollution on Wightman at the moment is disgusting. I walk it rather than cycle, it seems a lot of others do too as I used to notice cyclists on there and now I notice their absence. Amazing levels of traffic, all doing about 9mph... Didn't we used to have arguments from motorists that the 20mph speed limits were bad because their cars were geared for good fuel efficiency at 30mph? I mean, this is cars, holding up cars...
It took a while to get the Wightman Road safety audit but I kept chasing it, and am pleased it is now available to everyone.
You probably know by now that TfL are funding a low traffic neighbourhood for St. Ann's Ward. I attended a councillor briefing on this last week. I was very clear in my contribution that the likely outcome from this would be further displacement of traffic to Green Lanes and Harringay. Where else can the traffic go? Let's say that point was hard to disagree with, as was the point that just planning for St Ann's would lead to the displacement. Both Gina and I said there should be a plan which covered both wards - a strategy which might anticipate what could happen so a plan could be developed to mitigate the worst impact. Lot's more to come on this issue. All ideas welcome!
Cllr, Harringay ward
Thank you so much Zena, all the work you have been putting in to this has been tremendously helpful for Harringay Ladder Living Streets and our area.
Thanks Ant for your comment.
The Council is just about to start contacting people about the LTN for St. Ann's ward. The area of benefit includes the few roads in Harringay ward on the east side -from Harringay Road down to Alfoxton and St. Margaret's Road. These roads are in Harringay ward, but adjacent to St. Ann's which, of course, is why they are included. But we all know the traffic problems in Harringay are on the Ladder side of the road.
I have put in writing, again, the need to plan simultaneously for St Ann's and Harringay. Matt White replied saying he was meeting the officers today about Harringay. There is £5.1m in the Haringey capital budget for LTNs etc from April 2021. I have made the point that whilst the money is there from April 2021, thinking can start now. As far as I know thinking doesn't cost anything!
No doubt more on this to follow!
Cllr, Harringay ward
Why are you using Wightman or Green Lanes when the council has provided you with the perfectly good "Quietway 10"? No kidding this is their official cycle route from Wood Green to Finsbury Park, they even asked TfL for another £1.3 million for it last year.
All you need to do to take this cycling nirvana to Finsbury Park is:
Go north on Wightman all the way up and down the hill to Turnpike Lane.
Head up the hill on the very fancy segregated bicycle lane (that starts after the junction, in case you were hoping to avoid that death trap).
Again head up the hill almost to Crouch End to Harvey Rd. There are no indications that this is part of the Quietway route but believe me it is.
Go left down the hill on the unmarked Quietway 10
Turn left then right onto (again unmarked) Rathcoole Gardens
Go down the hill then turn left and right onto (again unmarked) Uplands Rd.
As the road name implies, you now have a long slow slog up the hill. On your way up you might like to cheer yourself by thinking you are now just as close to Finsbury Park as when you started.
You made it to the top! Now turn right then left onto Oakfield Road and go up more hill.
Now you get to go down the hill lined with parking and merging roads on both sides.
Once you reach the bottom you can turn left and go up the hill across the mercilessly narrow traffic-crammed bridge and arrive at Finsbury Park.
Not so bad is it? Your cycle from Wood Green station to Finsbury Park station along Green Lanes would have been 14 minutes and 43ft elevation.
But because the council doesn't want to deal with Wightman or Green Lanes, their suggested (and only) cycle route has 236ft of up hills and 220 of downhills, is unmarked and has no cycle separation. And they want to spend more money on it so they don't have to do something elsewhere.
I would love to know how they calculated the speeds. It is laughable to say they have reduced below 20mph. As a Wightman Road resident I can tell you that is not the case. A lot of traffic is travelling well above 20mph. Some is traveling well in excess of that. At night as it empties some idiots think it's a race track and I've seen speeds in excess of 50mph.
I’d also agree there is much much more traffic than during Lockdown #1 in March last year.
Thanks to Ant and everyone for all their hard work on this.
I thought the average speeds seemed very high given you'd expect some traffic to be slowing for cars coming in and out of junctions, people crossing, parking, cyclists, etc