Help the residents and support the council’s traffic strategies
18 October, 2019
Calls for pedestrianisation in Liverpool Road
• WE were bemused by the letter from the Upper Street Association, Highbury Fields Association and Canonbury Society concerning Liverpool Road, (Closure would divert more traffic, October 11).
We’re not sure why the associations are recommending doing nothing for a year, and referencing Liverpool Road a century ago – those of us who live here have big problems today.
The associations’ view seems to be that to close Liverpool Road at the bottom end and pedestrianise the shopping area would divert more traffic to Upper Street, a “principal route”, and would therefore be a bad idea. This is astounding: Upper Street is the A1 Great North Road, and that is where traffic should be.
These days parts of Upper Street are often empty except for a few buses, while Liverpool Road is clogged, as are many other residential roads now used as rat-runs by escapees from Highbury Corner.
Air pollution levels in Liverpool Road already exceed legal limits, as in many other residential streets. The Angel commercial end of Liverpool Road is very different from the 92 per cent of the road north of Tolpuddle Street, which is primarily residential. The council recognises it is a residential road and not a “principal route”.
But the increased traffic displaced by the Highbury Corner changes has hit residents hard, and now either clogs the road with stationary vehicles, belching fumes in the busiest times, or speeds through outside those hours. Liverpool Road no longer benefits “from removal of much of its heavy traffic”.
We need urgent action now to mitigate the effects of the new vehicle increase in residential roads – we cannot wait until yet another year has passed.
This would condemn us to accept that sleeping with ear-plugs, while our neighbours’ children inhale poisonous traffic exhausts in their homes and schools, is the price for choosing to live here.
Surely we should all be working with the council and Transport for London to protect residents, right now. We urge these worthy associations to use their energies to support the council’s new transport, clean air and low traffic neighbourhoods strategies and to encourage them to act to help affected residents immediately.
TONY SAGGERS & MARIA KOVAL