It’s not just cyclists who are suffering because of Camden Road
01 February, 2018
• STEPHEN Crosher puts the recent awful collision between a car driver and a cyclist near Royal College Street into a helpful perspective by citing the many other serious collisions involving cyclists, pedestrians and motor vehicle users on Camden Road (Too many accidents, January 25).
The current configuration of Camden Road favours travel by people in motor vehicles over all others, according to priorities for traffic management that were in favour 30 or more years ago.
Such designs are now widely understood to be self-defeating given modern travel demands since they just attract more motor traffic.
They do so not just by attracting drivers from other roads but also by encouraging short journeys by car that would be much better made by other means.
It is self-evident to all, including the drivers sitting in lengthy backed-up queues every weekday, that Camden Road doesn’t even achieve the original purpose and is no longer fit for anyone.
Despite its dangerous design, Camden Road attracts an average of more than 1,800 journeys by bicycle each weekday as there are no alternative safe routes for many of those journeys.
The national database of reported traffic collisions shows that there were eight reported collisions involving injury to people on bicycles in 2016 alone, of whom three sustained serious injuries.
Cyclists are not the only people suffering from the poor safety record of Camden Road. In the same year four pedestrians were injured there, two of them seriously.
The full statistics for 2017 aren’t yet available but one fatal collision involving a cyclist was reported in that year.
Since this is a “red route” it is Transport for London’s responsibility to modify its design to stop the carnage. They should:
• Restrict speeds to 20mph, enforced by speed cameras and / or with “tidal flow” signal timings, removing the advantage for those who speed.
• Redesign all the junctions on Camden Road to ensure the safety of vulnerable road users.
• Add protected cycle lanes on both sides of the road.
We should add that in April 2014 we joined TfL representatives to undertake an extended and detailed survey of opportunities to improve safety for vulnerable road users on Camden Road.
Several constructive suggestions emerged from TfL, but there has been absolutely no subsequent action.
Camden Cycling Campaign