Westminster Bridge South proposals - Expected changes to journey times

Closed 22 Dec 2015

Opened 10 Nov 2015

Overview

Overall context

The improvements to Westminster Bridge South aim to reduce conflicts between cyclists and motor vehicles and introduce more direct pedestrian routes. Westminster Bridge South is the junction of Westminster Bridge Road, Lambeth Palace Road and York Road, which are all busy roads used by numerous bus services. We have therefore designed our proposals to continue to allow general traffic and buses to move smoothly through the area, whilst providing dedicated space for cyclists and improvements for pedestrians.

Our proposals would affect all road users to some degree – with some journey times becoming slightly quicker and others slightly longer. This note explains the impacts we expect our proposals to have and is accompanied by a data table showing expected impacts for a range of journeys for general traffic, bus users, cyclists and pedestrians.

Pedestrians

Our proposals include a new pedestrian crossing on the ‘roundabout’, subject to agreement with the Park Plaza Hotel Group, which would provide a more direct route for pedestrians walking north/south between York Road and Lambeth Palace Road and east/west along Westminster Bridge Road. The new crossing would be ‘staggered’, meaning some pedestrians may need to wait on the central island before completing their journey. Providing a ‘straight across’ crossing with no central island would result in unacceptable delays to other road users.

Pedestrians walking south between the western footway of York Road (to the south of Chicheley Street) and Lambeth Palace Road (opposite Upper Marsh) via the existing crossing at the south end of York Road would experience an average journey time reduction of between a minute and a minute and a half in the both the morning and evening peaks. Pedestrians making the reverse journey would experience an average journey time reduction of up to thirty seconds in the morning peak and up to two minutes in the evening peak.

Pedestrians walking along Westminster Bridge Road via the new staggered crossing on the ‘roundabout’ would experience an increase in average journey time of between thirty seconds and one minute in both morning and evening peaks walking eastbound, and between one minute and a minute and a half walking westbound. This is compared with pedestrians walking via the improved crossing at the north end of Lambeth Palace Road and the existing crossing at the south end of York Road.

General Traffic (excluding buses)

Some journeys for motor vehicles would get longer at the busiest times of day and some would get shorter. The traffic modelling analysis looks at journey times at the busiest hour in the morning and evening peaks.

Our proposals would result in some general traffic journey times increasing (see below), meaning a small number of vehicles would be expected to find alternative routes. Our traffic modelling predicts that this effect would be negligible and neighbouring roads would not be expected to experience significantly increased volumes of general traffic.

Heading eastbound on Westminster Bridge Road, average journey times would increase by up to thirty seconds in both peaks. Heading westbound on Westminster Bridge Road, average journey times would increase by up to thirty seconds in the morning peak but would decrease by up to thirty seconds in the evening peak.

Traffic travelling southbound from York Road to Lambeth Palace Road would see an increase in average journey times of up to thirty seconds in both peak periods. However, traffic travelling northbound from Lambeth Palace Road to York Road would see a decrease in average journey times of up to a minute in the morning peak periods and up to thirty seconds in the evening peak.

Buses

Traffic modelling has been undertaken for the bus routes which pass through the scheme area to understand the impact of the scheme on bus journeys. A sample of journey times has been shown in the data table that represent typical bus journeys.

Heading eastbound on Westminster Bridge Road, all bus routes (12, 53, 148, 159 and 453) would experience an increased average journey time of up to thirty seconds in both peak periods, except route 159 in the morning peak which would see a reduced average journey time of up to thirty seconds.

Heading northbound from Lambeth Palace Road to Station Approach Road, route 507 would experience a reduced average journey time of up to thirty seconds in the morning peak and up to a minute in the evening peak. The same route travelling southbound from York Road to Lambeth Palace Road would experience a reduced average journey time of up to thirty seconds in both peak periods.

Heading northbound from Lambeth Palace Road to York Road, route 77 would experience a reduced average journey time of up to a minute in the morning peak and up to thirty seconds in the evening peak. The same route travelling southbound would experience a reduced average journey time of up to thirty seconds in the morning peak and an increased average journey time of up to thirty seconds in the evening peak.

Heading eastbound from Westminster Bridge Road (west) to Station Approach Road, route 211 would experience an increased average journey time of up to thirty seconds in both peak periods.

Cycles

Our proposals include dedicated traffic signals for cyclists to separate them from other traffic. In some situations this would mean that cyclists would have to wait at a red signal while traffic receives a green signal, increasing some journey times for cyclists, but allowing them to move through junctions separately to other vehicles.

Heading eastbound on Westminster Bridge Road, average journey times would increase by up to ninety seconds in the morning peak and up to sixty seconds in the evening peak. In the opposite direction, average journey times would increase by up to sixty seconds in the morning peak and by up to thirty seconds in the evening peak.

Cyclists travelling north/south between York Road and Lambeth Palace Road would see an increase in average journey times of up to thirty seconds in the morning peak and a decrease of up to thirty seconds in the evening peak.

Explanatory note on accompanying traffic modelling data table

TfL has used traffic modelling techniques to calculate the expected average journey time changes at the busiest hour in both the morning and evening peak. This data table outlines the expected average journey times for the following two situations;

  • Base model - current situation on street – Journey times for general traffic and cyclists are taken from VISSIM models
  • Future modelled journey times with scheme – Expected on street conditions if the Westminster Bridge South scheme is built. These average journey times take account of the advanced traffic signal management programme, which will change signal phasing to more effectively regulate the flow of traffic at certain locations to keep central London moving
     

The data table includes information for a sample of routes for general traffic, buses, cyclists and pedestrians through the area.

Our proposals would reduce the number of lanes available for general traffic in some locations which would usually be expected to result in longer journey times. The changes to patterns in traffic movement in the coming years mean that the general traffic demand in the area is expected to reduce. This lower traffic demand means the reduction in general traffic lanes would have a smaller journey time impact, compared to the existing conditions, than would usually be predicted.

If you have any further questions concerning the traffic modelling for this scheme email your requirements and contact details to trafficmodelling@tfl.gov.uk

Complementary measures

The impacts calculated through the traffic models do not take account of a range of additional complementary measures that would have beneficial impacts on journey times for buses and general traffic

  • Where there are negative impacts on journey times for bus routes shown in the table, a programme of work is being developed to save time elsewhere along the affected route by addressing delays and giving priority to buses at certain pinch-points
  • Road users can expect comprehensive and specific travel advice to help them to make informed journey choices to avoid busy times and locations
  • As well as asking them for their views on this consultation, we are working with the delivery and servicing industry so they can plan their activity and avoid making deliveries at the busiest times and locations. This is part of a wider programme to ensure deliveries can be made safely, cleanly and efficiently
     

Through the creation of the new Roads and Transport Policing Command, we will target enforcement at the busiest locations and known hot spots to reduce hold-ups and delays and keep traffic moving

Areas

  • Lambeth

Audiences

  • Public
  • Stakeholders
  • Local residents
  • Local businesses
  • Schools
  • London Boroughs
  • Coach Operators
  • Taxi trade
  • Transport for London
  • Taxi customers and other stakeholders

Interests

  • Cycling
  • Junction Improvements
  • Roads