Have your say on improvements to Highbury Corner for pedestrians and cyclists, and changes to bus services

Closed 20 Mar 2016

Opened 5 Feb 2016

Results updated 22 Mar 2018

Between 5 February and 20 March 2016 TfL and Islington Council jointly consulted on proposed improvements to Highbury Corner and on changes to bus services. We have now published our report providing responses to the issues commonly raised during the consultation.

Having considered the feedback to the consultation, and subject to approvals, we intend to proceed with the changes to Highbury Corner. There are some changes to what was proposed in our 2016 consultation, and these are listed below:

  • The arboretum is proposed to be partially open to public access in a way which protects existing trees. The new public space  would incorporate the western arm of the roundabout and Highbury & Islington station forecourt, providing local residents with more green space whilst protecting the most vulnerable trees
  • The proposed new pedestrian crossing, allowing for access to the south-eastern corner of the arboretum at the junction of Upper Street with Canonbury Road, will no longer be required. The proposal to partially open the arboretum on the western side means that the eastern half of the arboretum, including the option to open up a path from the south- eastern corner will no longer be required
  • The entrance to Corsica Street has been made a ‘blended footway’ which provides a continuous footway over the junction to give pedestrians priority
  • A shared pedestrian / cycle  ‘toucan’ crossing will be included across St Paul’s Road to allow two-way cycling to and from Corsica Street
  • The cycle lane on Canonbury Road will be extended to Canonbury School.

Click here to view the Response to issues raised report (PDF 383KB)

Updated map with changes following the consultation (PDF 3.9MB)

Next steps

TfL and Islington Council will continue together to progress with the scheme as set out in this report.

We will further develop the detail of the design for the scheme, and subject to securing the necessary technical and governance approvals, including environmental screening, will aim to start construction after the Highbury Corner Bridge replacement works are complete (currently planned to complete in spring 2018). We anticipate that construction at Highbury Corner will take around 12 months.

As the project progresses, we will update the consultation website and all of those who responded to the consultation and who provided contact details.


Results Updated 13 Feb 2018

We received 2,823 responses to the consultation. The overall responses show that the majority of respondents believed the new road layout proposals for Highbury Corner would:

  • Improve conditions for pedestrians (71 per cent)
  • Improve conditions for cyclists (67 per cent)
  • Improve conditions for tube/rail passengers (59 per cent)
  • Make conditions worse for motorists (35 per cent), and
  • Make conditions worse for bus passengers (33 per cent)

When asked to select a preference for the proposed new public space:

  • 14 per cent chose Option 1 (keep the arboretum closed to the public)
  • 56 per cent chose Option 2 (open up the arboretum for public use)

Please click here to read our Consultation Report (PDF)

Next steps

We will now spend time reviewing and considering all points raised in the consultation and will publish a second report in the coming months, in which we will set out our response to issues that were commonly raised in the consultation, and explain the next steps for the project.


Update - 12 February 2016

We have added our traffic modelling analysis including predicted journey time changes for different road users. Click here to go directly to this information.

Update ends

We are proposing a number of changes to Highbury Corner as part of our Road Modernisation Plan. Working jointly with Islington Council, we are consulting on proposals to make Highbury Corner more pleasant and accessible for all users, with improved facilities for pedestrians and cyclists.

Please click here for information on our previous consultation on options to improve Highbury Corner.

What are we proposing?

TfL and Islington Council are proposing to transform Highbury Corner by changing the one-way roundabout into a two-way traffic system.  The proposed closure of the western side of the roundabout together with a larger station square would create a new public space.

We propose making the following changes, which are explained in more detail below:

Road layout changes

  • removal of the one-way system
  • closure of the western side of the roundabout
  • improved pedestrian facilities
  • new cycling facilities

Other changes

  • changes to traffic movements
  • some local road closures
  • loading and disabled parking changes, and taxi rank provision
  • changes to trees

Bus service changes

  • withdrawal of route 277 between Highbury Corner and Dalston
  • additional buses on route 30

Options for a new public space

The proposals would change the way in which people currently use and travel through the area, and we would like to hear your views on them.

Drop-in sessions

Next steps

Have your say

Why are we proposing this?

A large number of pedestrians use the area resulting in crowded footways around Highbury & Islington station. 

The roundabout can also be difficult for cyclists to navigate and has been identified as a key barrier to cycle movement. Although cyclists make up 22 percent of all traffic at Highbury Corner roundabout in the morning rush-hour, there are currently limited cycle facilities there.

The proposed changes would make Highbury Corner a more welcoming area and balance the needs of all users more effectively.

  • Improved pedestrian crossings would allow pedestrians to move around Highbury Corner more safely and directly, without having to use staggered crossings (two separate crossings with an island in the middle). The reallocation of road space would provide a better experience for pedestrians by providing additional footway space
  • Rail and tube passengers would be able to leave Highbury & Islington station and walk directly into a new public space, leading from the new station square to the junction of Upper Street and Canonbury Road
  • Cyclists would have dedicated, segregated cycle lanes, reducing the risk of conflicts with vehicles and making cycling more enjoyable

Map of the proposed changes

Click here for a larger version of the above map (PDF)

What impacts would our proposals have on traffic flow?

We expect the proposals to mean changes to journey times for road users. Some journey times for motorists and bus passengers are predicted to get longer at busy times, whereas others are predicted to get shorter or stay the same.

Please follow the links below to see how different journey times may be affected:

Click here for a table of journey time impacts (PDF)

Click here for an explanatory note on journey time impacts (PDF)

Road layout changes in detail

Removal of the one-way system

The proposals would introduce two-way traffic with clear signals, road markings
and signs to assist all road users.

Closure of the western side of the roundabout

We propose closing the road that runs from the top of Upper Street to Holloway Road to all motorised vehicles and cyclists, and redirecting the main road to the other side of the arboretum (the green space in the centre of the roundabout). This would create a new public space leading to Highbury & Islington station.

Please see below for more information on the proposed options for the new public space.

Improved pedestrian facilities

The proposals include:

  • The pedestrian crossing at the junction with St Paul’s Road would be relocated closer to the junction itself, providing a more direct route for pedestrians
  • Widened pedestrian crossings at the junctions with Holloway Road, Canonbury Road and Upper Street. The pedestrian crossings at the Canonbury Road and Upper Street junctions would also be changed from two-stage crossings to straight-across crossings
  • The closure of the western side of the roundabout would  enable the provision of a new footway to help reduce existing pedestrian congestion in the area
  • A new signalised pedestrian crossing at the junction with Canonbury Road, if it is decided that the public space changes would include a path through the arboretum
  • ‘Legible London’ signs to provide pedestrians with maps of the local area and other wayfinding information

New cycling facilities

The proposals include:

  • Segregated cycle lanes in both directions on all three remaining sides of the road layout, to accommodate the key cycling movements
  • Three new signalised cycle crossings at the junctions with Highbury Place, St Paul’s Road and Canonbury Road, allowing cycle, pedestrian and motorist movements to be separated
  • A southbound mandatory cycle lane on Holloway Road, on the approach to the junction. Mandatory cycle lanes must not be entered by motor vehicles
  • A westbound mandatory cycle lane on St Paul’s Road, on the approach to the junction
  • Advanced Stop Lines (allowing cyclists to wait in front of motorists at traffic signals) on St Paul’s Road and Highbury Place, with an early release signal for cyclists on St Paul’s Road
  • A northbound segregated cycle lane on Canonbury Road, on the approach to the junction

Other changes in detail

Changes to traffic movements

To ensure the new road layout operates effectively, motorists and cyclists would no longer be able to:

  • Turn right from Upper Street into Canonbury Road
  • Turn left from Canonbury Road into Upper Street

Local road closures

The proposed closure of the western side of the roundabout would mean that the following roads would be permanently closed to traffic (both are currently closed due to the reconstruction of the Highbury Corner Bridge):

  • Highbury Station Road
  • Hampton Court

We also propose closing the southern end of Corsica Street to traffic, to assist cyclists moving through the junction and to remove any potential conflict between cyclists and other traffic turning into Corsica Street. The closure would also create a safer route for pedestrians crossing at the junction.

Loading and disabled parking changes, and taxi rank provision

  • We would provide a new 12 metre loading bay on the edge of the new station square, opposite Highbury & Islington station
  • The above loading bay would also include a new two car taxi rank, which would operate daily between 22:00 - 06:00 only. Highbury & Islington station would be served by the night tube and the new taxi rank would support this service
  • We would relocate the loading bay and disabled parking bay on the northern side of the roundabout (in front of the Marie Curie building) to the new carriageway edge, to allow space for the proposed segregated cycle track. The bay would be shortened by six metres
  • The loading bay at the top of Upper Street would be shortened by nine metres, to accommodate the new road layout

Changes to trees

To make space for the new road layout, we would need to remove up to 13 trees from the edge of the arboretum, as well as two from the northern side of the roundabout, three from the eastern side and one from the southern side – up to 19 in total. Two more will also need to be replanted in an alternative location.

We would mitigate the loss of trees by planting a number of additional trees within the boundary of the arboretum and in the new pedestrianised area.

Bus service changes in detail

Withdrawal of route 277 between Highbury Corner and Dalston Junction, and resulting additional buses on route 30

The proposed changes to Highbury Corner would require changes to bus route 277, to help the road layout to operate more effectively.

The 277 service currently operates between Leamouth and Highbury Corner 24 hours a day. Buses terminate at Highbury Corner, using the roundabout to turn around and stand on the eastern side. The bus stand would be removed as part of the proposed road layout changes, and turning would no longer be possible. 

Instead of terminating at Highbury Corner, the daytime service (between approximately 04:30 and 00:00) on route 277 would run between Leamouth and Dalston Junction bus station. This proposal would mean that daytime route 277 would no longer serve the following stops on St Paul’s Road and Balls Pond Road:

  • Westbound, towards Highbury Corner – stops F, BH, CD, CE, CF, CT and D
  • Eastbound, towards Leamouth – stops C, CU, CV, CH, CC, BE and E

The night time service (between approximately 00:00 and 04:30) would be renumbered N277 and extended via Upper Street, terminating in White Lion Street (Angel). The route would serve the following additional stops:

  • Towards Angel – stops G, M, N, B and F on Upper Street, stop R on Pentonville Road and stop T on Baron Street
  • Towards Leamouth – stop U on White Lion Street, and stops X, Z, P, R and F on Upper Street

Extending the day time service beyond Highbury Corner would affect reliability and significantly increase operating costs of the service. The extension of the night time service would provide new links to and from Upper Street and an increase in overall service frequency for Upper Street itself at night.

Click here for a larger version of the above map (PDF)

To ensure there is enough capacity on buses between Highbury Corner and Dalston with the proposed changes to route 277, additional buses would run on route 30 (Marble Arch - Hackney Wick) at the busiest times. Two extra buses would run from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch at morning peak times, and two more in the opposite direction in the evening peak.

Other bus information

  • The remaining bus services passing through Highbury Corner would be unchanged
  • Northbound bus stop A on Holloway Road would be put back in its original position prior to the start of construction of the Highbury Corner bridge. The shelter would be placed close to the bus stop where the footway is wider, to provide more space for waiting passengers

Options for a new public space

The proposed closure of the western side of the roundabout would provide an opportunity to create a new public space of up to 4000m2 (about half the size of a football pitch).

We have developed two options that illustrate both the minimum and the maximum extent of potential change and inclusion of the arboretum in the new public space. We welcome your views on which option, or part of an option, would be best for the area.

Option 1

We would pedestrianise the western side of the roundabout, linking it to the station forecourt, and plant a number of new trees in the pedestrianised area. 

To make Highbury Corner a more pleasant, well-designed environment, the new public space could contain a local community facility such as a café or market stalls, subject to future consultation and planning permission. We would also provide a seating area around the western border of the arboretum (which would remain closed to the public) to enable people to enjoy the new space.

An artist's impression of the view from Upper Street for Option 1

An artist's impression of the view from Highbury & Islington station forecourt for Option 1


Option 2

This option would include the changes proposed in Option 1, but also transform the area to a greater extent. We are proposing:

  • New paths through the centre of the arboretum to enable public access, which would require the loss of up to 4 additional trees compared to Option 1
  • A new pedestrian crossing, from the top of Canonbury Road to the south east corner of the arboretum, connecting with the new paths through the arboretum, to provide pedestrians with a more direct route to Highbury & Islington station
  • To open up the centre of the arboretum into a space that can be enjoyed by the public

An artist's impression of the view from Upper Street for Option 2

An artist's impression of the view from Canonbury Road for Option 2

An artist's impression of the view from Highbury & Islington station forecourt for Option 2

Both options would integrate the area outside Highbury & Islington station with the western side by using the same type of materials. We are working closely with Network Rail, which owns part of the station forecourt.  

London Underground is considering improvement works to the station frontage, subject to funding.

What impact would the proposals have on the arboretum?

Highbury Corner arboretum contains a unique collection of trees, planted in the 1970s. It provides a number of benefits, including:

  • A significant area of cover provided by the crowns of the trees
  • Improved air quality
  • Improved access to nature
  • A reduction in noise pollution
  • High visual, social and environmental value
  • Lessening the ‘urban heat island effect’ – the tendency of an urban area to remain warmer than its surroundings, caused by a lack of vegetation and soil moisture

We recognise the environmental significance and local importance of the arboretum, and the need to protect it as far as possible whilst improving Highbury Corner.

Option 1 impacts

As described above, the proposed new road layout would result in the removal of up to 19 trees from the area. This option would not require any additional trees to be removed and the arboretum itself would continue to be surrounded by railings and remain closed to the public.

Option 2 impacts

In addition to the impacts outlined in Option 1 above, up to four further trees would initially need to be removed from the arboretum to deliver landscaping improvements and create the paths through the centre, which would follow the most direct pedestrian routes to and from Highbury & Islington station

We propose to construct the paths using methods that would minimise the impact on the surrounding trees, for example, as a raised footway. Associated services and utilities (such as electricity to light the path) would be routed to avoid impacting the tree roots. The areas on either side of the paths would remain closed to the public, to protect the trees in those areas.  

In both options, we would mitigate the loss of trees by planting a number of additional trees within the boundary of the arboretum and in the new pedestrianised area.


  • Islington


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


  • Bus route 277
  • Cycling
  • Walking
  • Urban realm improvements
  • Loading bays
  • TfL's Road Modernisation Plan