Agenda item

Harrow View / Headstone Drive / Headstone Road junction improvement (Goodwill to All) - Progress Update

Report of the Corporate Director of Community.


Prior to the consideration of the report, the Panel heard from deputees present at the meeting (Minute 56 alsorefers) who spoke on behalf of shopkeepers and residents living in the area of the proposal, full details of which were available under this Minute by following the link below:


In brief, the deputees, whilst welcoming the proposed pedestrian crossings, urged the Panel to reject the recommended proposal (option 4B) as they were concerned that it would lead to an increase in accidents, impact adversely on surrounding streets and businesses which would also loose out on passing trade and enquired if officers had made provision in respect of any economic benefits resulting from the proposal.  They were also concerned about increased traffic congestion in an area that already suffered from congestion.

The deputees also referred to a petition opposing the proposal and how it would impact on what was essentially a residential area with schools and businesses.  The proposal to ban right turns would result in U-turns as residents tried to get to their homes.  It would also increase pollution in the area  which would impact adversely on the vulnerable.


The deputees also related various examples of how traffic would travel if the scheme was implemented and the resultant impact on residents.  They urged that officers work with residents/businesses to achieve an amicable scheme.


The deputees responded to the questions from the Panel, which then proceeded to consider the officer report.


The Panel received a report of the Corporate Director of Community, which set out details of the Goodwill to All junction improvement scheme, informal consultation and recommended that the scheme progress to the statutory consultation stage.


Harrow View / Headstone Road / Headstone Drive junction also known as the Goodwill to All junction was a four arm traffic light controlled junction located close to the old Kodak site.  The junction currently had no controlled pedestrian crossing stages and operated during weekdays at or near capacity in the morning and afternoon peak times causing congestion in the area.


An officer introduced the report and referred to the development of the Kodak site which would have a significant impact on the Goodwill to All junction for both pedestrians and traffic.  He added that money had been secured for improvements to the junction from the developer of the Kodak site and the money would be released when a viable scheme had been approved.  The deadline was 2019/20 financial year.


The officer outlined the key issues and explained how officers had arrived at a decision, following consultation with local residents, which recommended option 4B, details of which were set out in the report.  He added that a roundabout was not feasible and traffic signalling was the only viable way forward.  The junction was constrained and without any improvements there, the traffic would increase particularly on side roads.  The option proposed would help keep traffic congestion to a tolerable level.  He was confident that the investment would result in significant improvements to the area and offer a better environment for businesses as loading/unloading facilities would improve.  Access for pedestrians would also improve and the proposal would create a safer environment for them.  Design work and assessments had been carried out with Transport for London (TfL), including modelling of traffic and assessment of the options.  Extensive traffic surveys had also been undertaken.  The officer explained how work on accurate representations of where traffic flow was conducted.


Members were informed that further discussions with residents would be undertaken to help mitigate impact on side roads once the funding for the improvements at the junction had been secured.


The officer responded to a number of questions from the Panel.  The questions related to the definition of both local and through traffic, consultation undertaken and what methods were being used to reduce congestion.  It was suggested by an adviser that the only way of reducing congestion was to make driving expensive or cycling/public transport cheaper.  The Panel was informed that Ward Councillors had also been consulted on the options.  It was clarified that parking provision on the Kodak site would be constrained by current parking standards and people needed to be offered incentives, such as using sustainable transport, to help reduce congestion.  Making dedicated provision for cycle lanes at the junction was very limited due to the site constraints.

The officer responded to additional questions and explained that, the side roads experienced heavy parking and would not provide easy access for traffic.  For traffic coming from further away, it would be quicker for road users to travel using main roads and a study had shown which routes would be used.  He advised that experience had shown that most people would opt to take the easiest and most convenient routes.  The officer explained that economic considerations related to trading opportunities and recognised what the deputee had said about the new development providing new trading opportunities to replace those lost when the Kodak factory closed.  With regard to assessing the cost associated with any increased mileage, petrol/diesel output and air quality for local residents who would be inconvenienced by the proposal, the officer explained that this was too difficult to assess as the impacts would be spread over a wide area and would be difficult to monitor, although, on balance, it might not result in any overall increases because the number of journeys across the area would not change. 

A back-benching Member was of the view that the proposal would create more right turns in the vicinity of the area and that he would not be comfortable in making a decision based on a day’s data.  The officer explained that sufficient survey work had been undertaken to make assessments and it was impractical and expensive to carry out such an extensive survey on multiple occasions.  He explained that the surveys undertaken had been cross referenced with other surveys undertaken to check for accuracy and care taken to ensure that there were no adverse weather conditions or accidents and incidents on the network to ensure accuracy.  The officer explained that a proactive direction signing strategy would be implemented to guide traffic along appropriate alternative routes.

In response to additional questions from Members, the officer stated that, initially, the proposal would have an impact on the area but over a period of time, drivers would adjust to the new environment, experiment with different routes and adopt new travel routes.  It was easy to speculate what drivers would do as a result of the proposal but his professional view was that traffic would disperse much more widely than envisaged and there would be a very limited impact on the immediate area over time.  There would be a dialogue with local residents on the types of traffic measures suitable for side streets.

A Member thanked the deputees for their submissions.  He was of the view that local residents had the knowledge and that their vehement opposition to this proposal related to their own experiences.  If such opposition had been received for any CPZ (Controlled Parking Zone), it would not have been approved.


The Panel was of the view that they could not support the proposal before them and amended recommendations to those set out in the report which were moved and seconded and it was


Resolved to RECOMMEND (unanimously):  (to the Portfolio Holder for Environment)




(1)          the comments received during the informal consultation exercise be noted;


(2)          the report’s suggested transport interventions proposed to mitigate the impact of the proposed right turn restrictions at the junction be noted;


(3)          the elements of the scheme introducing traffic and parking restrictions, as shown in Appendix Ato the report, be noted;


(4)          the overwhelming consultation opposition from residents, businesses and stakeholders to the suggested banning of right turns be noted but the broad support for the ambition of a safer pedestrian junction be acknowledged;


(5)          junction improvements suggested in Appendix A to the report be placed on hold, and for any traffic and parking restrictions to be taken forward further detailed informal local consultation needed to take place to bring forward proposals which gained wider public support; and such proposals must minimalise and further mitigate against traffic volumes using side residential streets as a result of junction improvements;


(6)          the Panel recognises the importance of the junction improvements and urgency of the scheme and therefore once a scheme which properly addressed the concerns of residents was devised, this be brought to a special meeting of the Panel prior to moving to statutory consultation.


Reason:  To address the concerns of residents and businesses.

Supporting documents: