The Centre for London is setting up a Commission on the Future of London’s Roads and Streets running until 31 August next year.
‘Congestion on our roads is getting worse and worse across London, and particularly in Croydon resulting in high levels of air pollution, problems of road safety. One factor in the increase in vehicles is the growth in vans delivering to goods to homes purchased on line.
The Commission will be considering the challenges and possible solutions. Details will be announced of the members etc in January.’
It will be worthwhile a number of non-Council Croydon organisations working together through the first half of 2017 to analyse the congestion problems in Croydon and to try and submit joint evidence, even if this includes acknowledging differences of opinion. They could also consider submitting their report to the Council Scrutiny Committee and try and get it submitted to the Local Plan public enquiry.
Developing the Overground
Debate about the problems of congestion cannot be divorced from the problems of the rail infrastructure through Croydon. There is growing support for the transfer of suburban lines to TfL. The Centre for London report Turning South London Orange: Reforming Suburban Rail To Support London’s Next Wave of Growth (January 2016) examines the potential role for doing this as part of the existing London Overground Services (orange). It recommends:
- The Department for Transport devolve suburban rail services terminating inside or just outside the southern GLA boundary to Transport for London, as the current franchises expire.
- Central government provide a grant sufficient to cover the costs of turning south London orange beyond what can be funded from TfL revenue and business contributions. This is essential to keep south London moving.
- Transport for London work with Network Rail in order to implement the upgrades necessary to deliver orange standards across this network, in particular aiming to deliver six or more tph where possible.
- Transport for London work with the Department for Transport to coordinate standards across the various south-of-London franchises where this can help unlock additional capacity within south London.
- Network Rail and the Office for Rail Regulation should make the changes necessary to swap freight slots out of the peak passenger transport periods, in order to free up additional capacity in south London.
- Transport for London’s commercial development team work with London Boroughs to exploit the additional development potential around stations converted to Overground.
- If it proves difficult to deliver the necessary capacity increases under these capacity arrangements, then the Department for 63 Transport consider replicating the Rail North model in order to establish Capital to Coast Rail. CCR should then work to harmonise standards across the local network and achieve the maximum possible increases in capacity.
It also discusses potential changes to the way the three lines around Streatham Common Station are linked together and could be re-configured.