Albemarle Road Cycle Scheme changes – have your say by 3 March 2021

The temporary scheme on Albemarle Rd is being reviewed by the Council (it will be 6 months from implementation in May). Many local residents have provided feedback on the scheme and the Council’s Highways Team have taken onboard some of the comments received and are proposing significant changes. The Council are undertaking a subsequent consultation on 2 options:

OPTION 1 – alter  the scheme by installing traffic lights on Westgate Bridge, make part of Albemarle Rd two way, and keep the trial going

Westgate Road Bridge – 2 way with traffic lights

Our Association raised with the Council that the new cycleway and the closure of Westgate Rd Bridge to road users northbound did not link up with the long-proposed TfL cycle way at Lower Sydenham planned to go along Worsley Bridge Rd. It appeared that the Council had not considered the linkages between the 2 schemes in designing Albemarle Rd.   Cyclists travelling from Bromley from Albemarle Rd to Lower Sydenham would either have to dismount and push their bike over Westgate Rd Bridge where the pavement is not wide enough to do this safely or traverse the hazardous Beckenham Junction which does not have any cycle boxes.

If cycle schemes are to be effective it is essential they are connected to other cycle ways. We are pleased the Council took this on board and have secured funding from TfL put traffic lights on Westgate Rd Bridge so that a more interlinked cycling Quietway can be created from Albemarle Road to Lower Sydenham without cyclists having to negotiate the busy crossroads at  Beckenham Junction.

Our Association understands from the Council that the traffic lights installed at Westgate Road bridge will be ‘smart’,monitoring the traffic and adjusting to avoid unnecessary traffic queues.

This is excellent news for all road users, there are very few places to cross the railway line in Beckenham, and having Westgate Bridge back two-way will alleviate congestion at peak time, whilst encouraging cycle use travelling south to north.

It is important to note that TfL will only fund the traffic lights on the bridge as part of a cycle route – if the Albemarle Rd cycle scheme is scrapped the traffic lights will not be provided.

The exact route of the quiet way from Westgate Road Bridge to Lower Sydenham has not yet been finalised and we anticipate there will be opportunity for residents to give their views.  Our Association will also be engaging with the Council on this.  Please let us know your views at hello@coperscope.org.uk

Albemarle Road to Westgate Road reverts to two-way traffic again

The Council propose to make Albemarle Road two-way between Beckenham Junction and Westgate Road.  This will mean the sharp turn in the road that was installed to direct Bromley Bound traffic off Albemarle Rd and down St George’s Road, past the Harris Beckenham Green School, will be removed and the junction returned to its original configuration. 

This is good news for pedestrians who found it difficult to cross over St George’s Road at this point, with cars having right of way. This will also benefit the school, as rush-hour traffic will no longer be funnelled down St George’s Road

Albemarle Road partially reverting  back to two-way traffic, and two-way access over  Westgate Road Bridge, will have a significant effect on traffic flows in this part of Beckenham at peak time.

The Council has confirmed that the cycle lane wands on Albemarle Rd will be retained in the section of road that reverts back to two-way. We are following up about the road cleaning around the wands as debris is already building up around them.

The trial will be extended to assess the changes

The Council has confirmed the trial will be extended to assess the changes above. In a few months time residents will have the opportunity to give their views again on the amended scheme. 

OPTION 2 – scrap the whole scheme

As the Albemarle Road Scheme is temporary it can be removed in its entirety.  However this will mean that TfL will not fund the traffic lights for Westgate Road bridge. We understand that Bromley Council do not have funding to do this independently.

Many readers will be aware of the £700k scheme in Kensington and Chelsea that was removed. In response TfL are reported to have said it would be unlikely to fund any schemes in the borough in the near future.  In Beckenham alone there are so many important highways schemes that need funding, a pedestrian phase at the lights by Corner Ways Surgery / Beckenham Theatre, crossings by schools, a crossing by Beckenham Place Park to name a few – none of these are likely to be funded directly by the Council, and without TfL funds may never be realised.

COMPLETE THE SURVEY BY 3 MARCH

5 thoughts on “Albemarle Road Cycle Scheme changes – have your say by 3 March 2021

  1. Wait until the schools return and then assess the traffic scheme then. Roads are nowhere near as busy as they usually are. It’s like assessing a new scheme during the summer holidays.

  2. Uncontrolled two-way traffic across the narrow bridge causes tailgating, obstruction and arguments; one-way operation avoids this, but can be inconvenient.

    Traffic light control may alleviate all these issues, so let’s give it a try whilst (TfL) funding available.

  3. Hello

    I am a resident of Westgate Road and I have just replied to Bromley Council’s survey

    I have gone for Option 1 primarily because I do not think that we are in any position to make a final decision

    The Council have provided no statistics to justify either option nor any suggestion of where they want the cyclists to go. Once they reach Beckenham Junction Station / The High Street/ Southend Lane where do they want the cyclists to head. It seems that this is just an exercise to say that they are green and they are more than happy for TFL to pay for this. I am not sure what is in this for TFL as a successful series of cycle lanes would presumably mean less passengers for them.

    I see that you have suggested that the aim is to get cyclists both ways across Westgate Bridge, through West

    Gate Road, Foxgrove Road to Sydenham. Are they still planning on a roundabout at the end of Foxgrove Road?

    Surely we need to know the overall plan for the area, including relevant statistics before any final decisions are made or am I being too sensible?

    I do think that the Bridge ought to be 2 way, have we exhausted use of mirrors, cameras or even a ramp on the section from The Avenue enabling oncoming traffic , who have right away, to be seen

    I have included most of the above in my comments in the survey

    Best Regards

    John Mansi

  4. Absolutely no need for traffic lights at Westgate Road, Bridge but instead improved road markings stating ‘Dead Slow’ as the original road markings have eroded. Traffic lights would cause congestion backing on to Albemarle and Westgate Road.
    Current scheme is dangerous as cyclists ignore one-way signs on a daily basis.
    Two-way needs to be restored to reduce the congestion caused by the experimental scheme outside local schools with rising pollution levels as a result.

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