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Archive for the ‘Traffic and transport’ Category

The Nine Elms Vauxhall Partnership is holding open days about the development of the project at  the community centre on Bolney Meadow estate on Thursday 26 June, 3pm – 8pm and  Friday 27 June, 8am – 6pm.

The event will be an opportunity to have your say if you wish to save the Vauxhall bus station, which is threatened with demolition under proposals to replace the current one-way traffic system (‘gyratory’) with two-way traffic, and dispersal of the bus stops from their current accessible and user-friendly sites.

The event will also provide information on developments with the scheme, including the latest scale model, and the development of the Northern line extension to Battersea, cycle ways and a proposed new Thames bridge,

Further information at: http://www.nineelmslondon.com/events/open-days-2014

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ASSA has long campaigned for secure bike parking for residents – a few years age we successfully worked with Lambeth Council and London & Quadrant Trust to win secure bike sheds available for most of the Trust’s tenants in Albert Square.

Now the council has stepped up its commitment to support cycling and cyclists by installing secure bike hangars on our streets. You might have seen these on neighbouring streets and now, after an extensive period of consultation, Lambeth is proposing to install secure bike hangars on:

  • St Stephen’s Terrace – outside no. 19
  • Aldebert Terrace – outside no. 8.

However, there has not yet been any proposals for similar hangars in Albert Square or Wilkinson Street.

In Albert Square, some individual residents are vociferously opposed to any siting of hangars in the square. However, there does seem to be demand for secure on-street bike parking as 4 to 5 bikes are regularly chained to the railings opposite 6-14 Albert Square (including one that has been vandalised, indicating a need for secure provision).

On Wilkinson Street, there has been no expressed indication of need, although bikes are sometimes parked on the street, and a previous walk-around by the Lambeth Cycling Officer and ASSA members indicated a possible site alongside the entrance to the car park behind the flats next to St Stephen’s Church.

If you have any views about the siting of the bike hangars, especially if you are a bike owner seeking secure on-street parking, please email Eric Duval, cycle parking programme, at: eduval@lambeth.gov.uk

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Lambeth Council has approached all the residents’ associations in our area about its plan to invest in a Neighbourhood Enhancement Programme. The Neighbourhood Enhancement Programme is about street improvements for all the streets in the triangle between Stockwell, up to Oval and Vauxhall.

The committee of Albert Square & St Stephen’s Association wants your views on what we should ask for in our streets. We’re trying to encourage people who live in the following streets to tell us what they think:
– Albert Square

– Aldebert Terrace
– St. Stephen’s Terrace
– Wilkinson Street

Lambeth has given us a number of options to chose from. Please have a look at the online questionnaire we’ve created. There are only 10 questions to respond to. It should take five minutes to fill out the questionnaire.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/3HVMBHN

We’ve asked for your name and contact details at the bottom of the questionnaire. You don’t need to tell us who you are unless you want to. We’ll only use this information to let you know what progress we’re making or to ask any questions if you have specific queries.

We look forward to seeing your responses on the online questionnaire

Many thanks

The committee of Albert Square & St. Stephen’s Association

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It looks as if Chelsea Football Club has failed in its bid to obtain Battersea Power Station.

Let us hope that this Malaysian outfit  who wish to buy, have the pockets to build out – and the inclination to get a wiggle on- unlike ALL the previous owners.

Failed: Chelsea's bid to build a new Battersea stadium has been ended

Poor old Battersea Power Station has suffered terribly in not having the right owners over the decades. All the previous development companies have been doomed to failure and after all these years the Power Station is still  a sad and total mess. The fact that such a huge central London site, a Grade 2  listed building and strategically important part of the regeneration  jigsaw puzzle can have been left to languish,  should be a greater source of embarrassment to those who have any power or influence within London. Successive responsible  councillors, M.P’s, Mayors and Ministers of whatever political persuasion should all hang their heads.

Now, in 2012, we have reached the stage where SP Setia and Sime Darby have  entered into an exclusivity agreement with the intention of buying the  39-acre (15 hectare) site. The potential purchasers now have 28 days to do their due diligence and work out if they should go ahead.

The venture is understood to  hope that it can work within the existing  8.3m square foot outline planning consent obtained by the site’s previous owner, the struggling Irish developer Treasury Holdings, for a scheme by  architect Rafael Viñoly that comprised 3,700 homes along with offices, shops and restaurants.

In a joint statement, the Malaysian partners said they were planning a “multi use  real estate regeneration project” that would preserve the facade of the historical power plant with its distinctive four white chimney stacks. It is understood that the Malaysian duo would contribute £250 m to the cost of the proposed Norther Line extension.

Local planning authority Wandsworth Council said the deal was “potentially very good news”.

Council leader Ravi Govindia said: “We’re making tremendous progress towards transforming this old industrial stretch of the South Bank which will provide up to 25,000 new jobs for London.

“It’s important that this site and its iconic building are not left behind and that a developer is brought in who understands our vision for the new Nine Elms.”

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What will make Vauxhall A Lovelier Place?

It could be argued that a great deal of development has got through  planning without a proper or engaged debate about the needs of the existing communities around  the Vauxhall Nine Elms development area (VNEB).

The VNEB development is 195 hectares- a colossal area- larger than Hyde Park and it is proposed that more than 16,000 homes will be built.

There will not be many more opportunities to  input into  the  overall planning picture  and this should be considered a last chance to really influence Lambeth to get the best solutions for Vauxhall.Image

 WHERE ? : The council is holding open days on Wednesday 14 and Thursday 15 March (3pm to 8pm) at Unit 13A, St George Wharf, Vauxhall SW8 2LL. All are welcome to share their views.

WHY ? : The council is currently preparing a supplementary planning document (SPD) for Vauxhall area that will guide development in that area for the next few years and it wants to hear people’s views about what the priorities should be.

ANYTHING OF INTEREST? 

The council is putting forward a number of ideas that will make it clear what kind of development will be welcome.

This includes the creation of a new public square that would provide a focus for the area, and the potential for replacing Vauxhall bus station with bus stops along a new high street lined with shops.

“We are determined that any future development in the area brings improvements and benefits for the local community,” says Cllr Steve Reed, leader of Lambeth Council

“We want to create a proper town centre in Vauxhall and remove the physical barriers, like the gyratory, that make this difficult.

“The SPD will set out what improvements local people and the council want, making it clear to developers what will be acceptable and how they will be expected to contribute.”

The council says it wants to wants to consider ambitious plans to remove the gyratory and reintroduce two-way to get a better balance between cars, walking and cycling.

Last year the Mayor of London Boris Johnson told the London Assembly that abolishing the one-way system would cost “in excess of £20 million”.

Last month Mr Johnson said: “TfL is continuing to work closely with the London Borough of Lambeth and the GLA to develop short and long term proposals to improve Vauxhall gyratory for all road users.

“There are currently a number of options that are being considered and discussions are continuing between the public bodies, landowners and other stakeholders, although no agreement on a preferred solution has been reached as yet.

“TfL hopes to be in a position to provide a further update by the middle of this year.

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One of London’s first two ‘cycle superhighways’ is due to run along Clapham Road and should be operational along its full length from Merton to the City by the summer.  The scheme promises ‘a safe, fast, direct, continuous and comfortable way of getting from outer to central London by bike along recognised commuter routes’ according to Transport for London.

The routes promise clear blue markings for the cycle lanes themselves, together with smoother road surfaces and better safety measures.  It’s not yet clear how much practical difference this will make – the document listing the implementation works is decidedly vague for something which is already underway:  the statement that existing cycle lanes will be widened ‘where possible’ does not inspire immediate confidence, and continuous blue cycle lanes through juntions are only being trialled.  There is though some willingness, at least in principle, to think slightly more strategically about some of the bigger junctions:

A survey will be conducted to assess the impact of reducing the two lanes heading northbound towards the A3 at the Stockwell Gyratory to one lane, allowing the installation of a new segregated cycle lane at this location.

Meanwhile, of course, the existing London Cycle Network route 3 winds its way from Clapham Common to Waterloo along Aldebert Terrace and Stephen’s Terrace, dealing with busy main roads largely by avoiding them.  That’s the paler blue route on the map below – an extract from a larger map showing the whole route of the new cycle superhighway – which casually allows Meadow Road to cross South Lambeth Road to join up with Larkhall Lane, so let’s hope nobody tries to use it to find their way.

But how super will the cycle superhighway really be?  Andreas Kambanis, who blogs as the London Cyclist is not optimistic, comparing what, on past form, we are likely to get in London with the rather more ambitious plans for cycle superhighways in Copenhagen.  No prospect for us of copying the ‘green wave’ which means that cyclists travelling at a steady 20 kph will get green lights at each succeeding junction – but at least a recognition that cycling is increasingly one of London’s core modes of transport.

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Tracking the Tube

As many residents are all too well aware, we live on top of the Victoria Line, a largely benign subterranean neighbour since its arrival forty years ago.  In the last few years, though, the level of noise and vibration has grown to the point where it is a serious problem for some people who live very close to the line of the route.  The map below shows the two Victoria Line tunnels coming down from the north (the right edge of the map) and starting to curve as they come in to Albert Square to line up with the Northern Line tunnels (at the bottom left of the map) for the parallel platforms at Stockwell.  Click on the map to see a much larger version.

Transport for London came to an ASSA meeting last month to explain what they were doing about the problem, but seemed to be slightly baffled by it.  Their normal approach is to grind the rails where excessive noise is being produced.  That was done last August – but without resulting in any reduction in noise.  They are considering what more they can do but it was pretty clear that they don’t have an specific ideas.    We will keep you informed about progress in discussions with TfL, but if you want to know more or if you are directly affected, please email assacan@assa.org.uk or call Chris on 07971 198555.

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