A horrendous accident happened on our roads. Three fire engines were called. We have been warning about accidents and have had many meetings with the Council since 2018, the latest one on 2nd June 2021, with Cllr Muhammad Ali, Croydon Council Cabinet Member and Chair of Traffic Management Advisory Panel. We have asked our councillors Maddie Henson and Jeet Bains as well as our MP Sarah Jones to act on our behalf.
After 5 years of ongoing talks with the Council, no material changes have been made to improve the traffic volume on our roads and the associated risks; we have been assured of both short-term mitigations and longer term projects to alleviate traffic flow across the broader area. Neither have materialised.
As a consequence of the inaction, we have maintained a log of accidents and near misses which tells the story of the inevitable fatality that will surely come. Residents are suffering from interminable traffic, morning, noon and night, with all the associated noise and pollution you would expect.
Our roads have not always been like this. the problem was a direct consequence of the decision made by the Council five years ago to create road closures in Addiscombe West, and in so doing deposited traffic onto our roads, creating a 'sacrifice zone' by creating cut-throughs and rat runs using our roads, between Lower Addiscombe and Addiscombe Roads.
The Council, our MP and Officers have been diligent in maintaining communication with us but in the absence of any tangible action, it increasingly feels as though we are being 'managed'. The Council has finally admitted (as documented) that the changes to Addiscombe West were a mistake, but that to rectify them would, apparently, now be impossible without Transport for London - TfL agreement. Indeed, we are now caught in a Catch 22 scenario. The Council has no money without TfL involvement. So, what is to be done? We are told that a broader scheme is possible, but that 'it is not a priority' from the Officer leading the case.
In the meantime, accidents happen, and residents are unable to enjoy living in their homes.
£50k Planning Bid
Conversations continue with Council officers and our local politicians to try to make some tangible progress in improving the unacceptable levels of traffic flow on HOME roads. To remind you, it was not always like this! Poorly considered decision making in Addiscombe West, leading to road closures in that ward displaced enormous volumes of traffic onto our roads, meaning we have endured congestion, pollution and accidents for many years now. We must change this situation and the Council has a duty to improve the quality of life for residents and to introduce traffic mitigation onto our roads.
The latest situation is that a bid was put forwarding to TFL by the Council for £50k to approve a scoping / planning exercise in what might be achievable. We are waiting to hear whether this money has been released and, if so, for a meeting to discuss with the Council exactly how this scoping exercise might happen, over what timescale and to what end. As ever, we will keep you posted!
Summary of traffic on H.O.M.E roads
Those of us who have lived here for a while will have noticed the increase of through traffic on our roads, with all the unpleasant associated impacts of noise, pollution and increased collisions. Look out of your window and you will probably see heavy goods vehicles, delivery vans, motorbikes and plenty of other traffic, all using our roads to rat run between Addiscombe and Lower Addiscombe Roads.
It wasn’t always so busy. In the last five years, there have been two nearby schemes which have protected other residential roads (Lebanon Road, Addiscombe Court Road and Canning Road) but displaced large volumes of northbound traffic onto our roads. Elgin Road now has heavy night time traffic, being the first available northbound route between here and Cherry Orchard Road.
Over the past 3 years, H.O.M.E Residents Association has worked hard to bring this to the attention of the Council, whose policy is not to increase traffic on residential roads, but rather to create healthy and safer streets that encourage more walking, improving air quality and reducing the number of short car journeys that could be walked, cycled or taken on public transport. There has been a string of community meetings and we have been working with our councillors and our MP, Sarah Jones. The Council committed to exploring a project to restrict northbound traffic on our roads, with an initial assessment being undertaken by a consultant. The aim is to create a village feel across Addiscombe, keeping as much traffic on the main roads as possible whilst encouraging people to use other modes of transport.
In May 2020 Councillor Stuart King, Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport & Regeneration, provided H.O.M.E RA with a copy of the report from the consultant, Arcadis, commissioned by the council to assess our proposal as well as an independent review of traffic conditions in the Addiscombe area. Councillor King told us that the recommendations are supported by the council’s Head of Highways, but before he arrived at his decision he gave us the opportunity to respond to the report.
H.O.M.E Traffic Meeting with Council Officers and Elected Representatives
Zoom 21st July 2020 at 6.30 pm
Mark Averil, the Head of Transport will make site visit to our roads on 27th July at 14.30 to look at possible solutions to stopping through traffic and heavy vehicles using our roads to cut through between two A roads.
In 2016 H.O.M.E RA together with 14 other resident associations in Addiscombe and Shirley sent a letter to Croydon Council Chief Executive, to request a meeting with her and TFL. This was in response to considerable concerns regarding the impact of the piecemeal changes to traffic management in East Croydon and the implications of future development in Central Croydon on traffic in the area. To view the letter click here.
The requested meeting took place in March 2017 and marked the beginning of our efforts to protect our environment.
Dispite our efforts, meantime, at a meeting in February 2017 decisions were made by Traffic Management Advisory Committee (TMAC) that led to Canning and Addiscombe Court Roads becoming No Entry from Addiscombe Road in January 2018.