Greens call for 20mph on Holloway Road after Boris scraps superhighway

Former councillor Katie Dawson, Darren Johnson AM, Cllr Caroline Russell, and Green activist Carolin

Former councillor Katie Dawson, Darren Johnson AM, Cllr Caroline Russell, and Green activist Caroline Allen campaign for 20mph on Holloway Road - Credit: Archant

Green campaigners have renewed calls for a 20mph speed limit on Holloway Road after a cycle superhighway was scrapped by Mayor Boris Johnson.

The axing of route CS12, which would have run from Archway to Angel Station, was revealed by the Mayor in a letter to Green Assembly Member Darren Johnson last week.

So far four of a promised 12 superhighways have been delivered, but have come under criticism for not being safe for cyclists – with several deaths taking place due to collisions with traffic.

Campaigners say the Mayor underestimated the difficulty of delivering safe cycle routes on some of London’s busiest roads, which has led to a re-think of certain routes.

Cllr Caroline Russell, who was part of the consultation on the superhighway in her capacity as chair of Islington Living Streets, said: “I think they realised it would take a lot more than just painting blue lanes on the road – that doesn’t save cyclists or pedestrians from traffic.

“It’s desperately disappointing. The Holloway Road is a huge multi-lane highway, it’s the A1 and goes all the way to Scotland and it runs through Islington – a place where so many people are working, living and shopping.

“We need that road to be tamed and it would be with the cycle superhighway, because there would have to be less cars and lorries on the road.

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“It would reduce road danger, air pollution, noise and it would feel more like a place for people than a place for cars.”

Cllr Russell is now campaigning for the Mayor to change the speed limit on Holloway Road to 20mph with the superhighway being scrapped.

“We called for it when we secured the speed limit for all Islington controlled roads – we’ve been calling for 20mph on the Mayor’s roads for a very long time.

“It would help make the borough a less traffic dominated place.”

Cllr Claudia Webbe, Islington Council’s executive member for environment and transport, said the Mayor would need to tame Holloway Road before it would be used for a superhighway

“We’re disappointed that the Mayor has shelved it and we remain committed as a council to enable better roads for pedestrians and cyclists in Islington,” she said.

“But Holloway Road has the highest level of pollution in the borough and the Mayor’s unhealthy busses running through it so it’s perhaps not well suited for cyclists without first tackling that problem, which we have challenged the Mayor to do.”

Leon Daniels, managing director of Surface Transport at TfL, said: “The Mayor’s Cycling Vision said that we would look to build the same number of cycle superhighways, but that some will be relocated or rerouted.

“Subject to consultation, the proposed East-West and North-South superhighways would mean that, in total, 12 cycle superhighways would be delivered.”