IslingtonTribune

The independent London newspaper

Roundabout road closures spark rat-run fury

Councillors say Old Street traffic has been redirected down residential streets during redesign of junction

06 November, 2020 — By Calum Fraser

An illustration of how Old Street Station could look at the new roundabout

CHANGES to Old Street roundabout have infuriated councillors who say closed roads have redirected traffic into residential streets.

The left turn from Old Street west onto City Road north, and the right turn from City Road south onto Old Street east were closed this week until next year.

The new measures were the latest development in a multimillion-pound redesign of the junction which will eventually see the north-west arm of the roundabout closed permanently to all traffic.

In a letter to the Tribune this week, Bunhill ward councillors Cllr Phil Graham and Cllr Troy Gallagher said they were not warned that the alterations would take place and accused Transport for London (TfL) of “underhand” tactics.

Cllr Graham said: “TfL need to revisit the ludicrous idea to have these banned turns at the roundabout which are going to cause havoc in our area with side-streets being filled with traffic and the subsequent pollution it will cause.”

A TfL spokeswoman, however, said that both councillors were sent details of the banned turns on October 6.

The redevelopment of the roundabout was brought forward after a number of serious collisions involving cyclists and vehicles.

In one incident cyclist Sarah Doone had to have her leg amputated after it was crushed by a cement mixer.

Nick Fairholme, TfL’s director of project and programme delivery, said: “Our work to transform Old Street roundabout will make a huge difference to everyone who travels through the area.

“The project includes extensive improvements to the station and will create a significantly more attractive environment that is much safer for cycling and walking.

“We’d like to thank local residents and businesses for their patience during the work, and from listening to their concerns about extra traffic on Bath Street, we have implemented a temporary pre-diversion on Goswell Road for drivers wishing to connect from Old Street west to City Road north until January 2021.

“We’ll continue to work closely with Islington and Hackney on plans for the area, as well as keeping local people up to date.”

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