OPINION: “NO CYCLE LANES, NO CPZ….”

Lambeth’s draft local plan makes some sweeping generalisations of the Crystal Palace area.

“The surrounding area is relatively poorly served by public transport.”

Really? OK it would be nice to have a bus service which went along Church Road and then turned left towards South Norwood Hill. But “poorly served”?

Upper Norwood is located close to Crystal Palace Park, which is a major regional open space asset. Despite this parts of Upper Norwood are considered deficient in access to multiple types of open space, including small or local parks.

Considered by who?

Small or local parks within walking distance of the Triangle: Westow park behind Sainsbury’s; Small or local parks a bit further away?: The field at the bottom of Gipsy Hill (popular with dog walkers);

Beaulieu Heights entrances from top of South Norwood Hill which is at the far end of Church Road and at its lower end from Lancaster Road.  Very rarely used and best avoided because of anti-social behaviour.

Norwood Park: Down Central Hill (opposite Virgo Fidelis) between Elder Road and Salters Hill.

Upper Norwood recreation ground between Chevening and Eversleigh Roads.

“The Triangle, where east/west and north/south A roads intersect, suffers from the impact of high levels of through traffic which detracts from the local environment and prevents the area realising its full potential as a destination. The area is not covered by a Controlled Parking Zone.”

We don’t need a controlled parking zone. There’s hardly any parking available in the area as it is. Turning the public car park at the rear of Sainsbury’s on Westow Street into two-hour parking exacerbated the situation.

“There are four bus routes serving the area, one night bus and one express bus service.”

Someone clearly hasn’t done their homework.

Actual buses on the Triangle (Church Road / Westow Street / Westow Hill): 249, 322, 417, 432, 450 N2 N137

Buses from Crystal Palace bus station: 3, 122, 157, 202, 227, 358, 363

Buses down Anerley Hill 410

Other night buses . N3 (stops on Crystal Palace Parade) N63 (starts and finishes Crystal Palace Parade).

Express bus service X68  stops Beulah Hill / All Saints Church. Fast from  Robson Road West Norwood to Waterloo station.

“The current one-way system was introduced to reduce congestion in the Triangle but makes the area less permeable for cycling and congestion remains an issue.” (According to the Cambridge English dictionary permeable means: “allows liquids or gases to go through it.”)

Lambeth council should really come up and take a proper look before putting forward such an unconvincing argument. As News From Crystal Palace has said before we have lots of cycle lanes – especially on the Triangle:

They’re called pavements.

In the case of cyclists this means cycling on pavements which go the same way as the traffic; cycling on pavements which go against the traffic flow – or just cycling in the road against the traffic.

There’s also the PEDESTRIAN island outside the White Hart pub which cyclists use as a convenient shortcut from one bit of pavement (or road) to another.

Lambeth also say they will be “investigating with Transport for London and other adjoining boroughs ways in which traffic conditions in the area can be improved, including the consideration of parking controls.”

But not talking to local community groups, Chamber of Commerce etc?????

The plan says the council will support the role of Upper Norwood as a district centre and work with the adjoining London boroughs to safeguard and encourage retail uses and other appropriate town-centre activities. It will support opportunities for physical improvements to the centre which enhance and improve its character and will seek to improve traffic and environmental conditions for pedestrians and cyclists in the area and public transport links to other parts of London.

Pedestrians and cyclists are two different groups.

The plan also says they will:

c) support the extension of Tramlink to Crystal Palace;
d) work with Transport for London on options to improve bus services towards central London.

Readers will have their own – many and varied – views on these two subjects

On the plus side:

The council will support the vibrant arts and cultural scene and also encourage the growth of the and (sic) creative and digital industries sector in the area.

f) protect Coopers Yard Studios for cultural, creative and digital uses; and
g) work closely with the adjoining boroughs to ensure a co-ordinated approach to the management of the centre.

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