Two roads are to be closed in South Norwood to create a Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN), as part of Croydon Council’s Streetspace’s initiative.
Two streets connecting to Albert Road are to be closed off to motorists as of the 8th of October to create the LTN, following positive feedback to similar measures already in place across south west London.
From March to April of this year, in the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, there was a 25% reduction in air pollution levels and Croydon Council cabinet member for transport and the environment Stuart King is hoping that the measures can produce similar results.
He said: “Air quality in Croydon is a genuine concern, and we know that excessive traffic from motor vehicles is a major contributing factor.”
“We must continue to do everything we can to enable more short journeys that can be walked or cycled to do so”.
In April, the council introduced street closures in South Norwood on Albert Road junction with Eldon Park, and the Harrington Road junction with Albert Road.
To complete the South Norwood LTN, both Apsley Road and Belfast Road will be designated as Low Traffic Streets, closing them off to motorists, which will prevent excessive through traffic from using these roads.
The council hope by restricting access to motorists they will encourage more people to walk and cycle as a way of easing the impact of increased road traffic.
Restrictions put on the public transport system as a result of the coronavirus pandemic have led to an increase in people using their cars as primary means of transportation.
The introduction of further road closures will coincide with National Clean Air Day.
As part of the campaign the council will also be expanding its air quality monitoring programme to all primary schools in Croydon and running workshops to educate students and parents.
Councillor King believes that it is the children who will benefit most from these new measures.
He stated: “Children are likely to have a high risk of exposure to air pollution around schools and their developing lungs are at greater risk to develop complications.”
However, the announcement of further road closures has not been received well by all in the community.
A poll ran on the Facebook group, South Norwood Net, found that 70-80% of local residents want to see the current roadblocks in place removed.
Councillor Pat Ryan believes there should be more communication between the council and its residents to come to a solution that works for all.
He said: “My mailbox has been filled everyday with people totally against it. What I’ve been asking for is consultation and a traffic assessment of the whole area. You must try to work with the people.”
Featured Image Credit: Google Maps