London had coped with large volumes of traffic because
it has an excellent, 18th century street grid which enables cars and
vans to leave the main routes and criss-cross their way around the capital.
The flood of new traffic lights, one way streets, narrowed
roads and many key highways cut from two to one lane – has been
disastrous and must be reversed!
In detail this means...
- Congestion Charge/Traffic issues. Quickly abolish the
‘Western Extension’. Boris Johnson, new mayor, should
now demand to know what is the total cost of the CC scheme? I suspect
the true figure is north of £400m, yes really, and may include
a host of secret additional payments to Capita to stop them from withdrawing
from the scheme. If true, the whole scheme is unsustainable in any
- Next, Tfl is acknowledged as being the slowest and
least professional municipal transport body in Europe – remove
most of the senior management and replace them with high-competence
- Reverse the traffic light changes introduced by Tfl
– and remove many of 3,000 additional traffic lights established
by Tfl across the London – including three across Park Lane,
five at Marble Arch, 13 at Trafalgar Square, two at Hyde Park Corner.
- Reverse the many new ‘one way’ street
restrictions introduced by Westminster and Camden Councils.
- Boris might also demand to know how many bailiffs
they have used, and what additional charges they have demanded from
non-payers. Around £40 per visit is considered fair, but they
often demand £200.
- Boris should now commission a forensic auditor to
examine the contracts agreed by Tfl/LDA, over the Congestion Charge
scheme and others.
- Buses... I believe complaints have been running at
thousands per week. Most buses are driven so aggressively that a large
proportion of the pensioner population of London have abandoned the
- Trafalgar Square must be re-opened – ie open
the north side of the square to traffic – to reconnect the west
and east parts of London. This has been hugely damaging, slicing the
capital in two... It might also be a good idea to build a broad pedestrian
bridge over the road, from the front of the National Gallery to the
- Lastly, hundreds of taxi drivers – the salt
of the earth – are being charged with petty fines every day,
on top of the hundreds of BT vans, British Gas maintenance vans, etc.,
mostly by Camden and Westminster Councils – the Mayor needs
to make a stand against them.