Brackenbury, Brook Green and Barons Court to have schemes similar to South Fulham
An ANPR camera installed in Broughton Road in South Fulham. Picture: Owen Sheppard
Hammersmith & Fulham council is set to proceed with an expansion of the Automatic Vehicle Number Recognition (ANPR) camera enforced traffic restrictions across the borough over the next two years.
Dubbed Clear Air Neighbourhoods, an outline programme for has been developed for experimenting with schemes that will restrict access to a number of exempt categories of vehicles including those owned and registered by borough residents. Visitors can be registered to enter free of charge through the Ringgo app.
Any vehicle entering the zones without access will be subject to a fine from ‘smart’ cameras that will be positioned on the boundary to the zone.
The technology is currently being used in parts of South Fulham and it is intended to expand this scheme to the opposite side of the Wandsworth Bridge Road after residents complained that traffic was being displaced.
The first scheme to be introduced in another part of the borough will be the Brackenbury district for which the council is proposing to begin the process of implementation in November. Zones in Brook Green and Barons Court will be initiated in April 2023. The council says it has already started talking to residents’ groups in the Brackenbury area and it will take three to six months to develop the final design of the scheme in that area with a similar timescale for other zones.
Following that a major ramp up of implementation is planned between June 2023 and July 2024 with restrictions to be introduced in Cathnor Park, Caxton Village, Hammersmith Town Centre, North End Road, Ravenscourt Park, Riverwalk, Wendell Park, White City, Wormholt Park and Wormwood Scrubs.
Council claims South Fulham scheme has reduced traffic in residential areas
The council says that the South Fulham scheme has been successful in reducing out-of-borough vehicle traffic from the area with a reduction of 23% since the introduction in July 2020. This would equate to a reduction of 8,000 vehicle movements a day. Local streets within the restricted areas have seen traffic fall by 75%
Critics say that much of the traffic has simply been displaced to other areas and some of the fall can be attributed to other factors such as the lockdown and more working from home. They claim that, rather than improving air quality, the council’s primary motivation for expanding these schemes is financial as the South Fulham restrictions are generating a significant amount of revenue.
The Clean Air Neighbourhood zones will be implemented through a series of Experimental Traffic Orders which means that a full consultation does not need to be held prior to their introduction. Rather the schemes will be put into effect and residents and businesses will be allowed to give feedback for a trial period that could be as long as 18 months. Officers will try to determine possible issues from residents’ associations in targeted areas prior to the launch of experimental schemes.
H&F residents and key “permitted vehicles”, such as buses, black cabs, emergency services, and waste vehicles, will be unaffected by the access restrictions and will be able to pass through the cameras and move around the area without incurring a penalty.
The council says that it will work with navigation Sat Nav providers to ensure delivery and other taxi services such as Uber will be 'correctly routed' within the neighbourhoods.
It says can take upwards of three months from project launch for the initial peak in fine issuance for camera enforced projects to settle and up to six months for a project to settle and achieve the traffic reduction levels expected.
During the experimental period, the council says the project team will continue to work with key stakeholders including residents and businesses in each area to refine the project as appropriate.
Cllr Sharon Holder, Cabinet Member for Public Realm said, “Residents are taking back control of their air. “Their streets are no longer full of out-of-borough drivers using them as a cut-through rather than to visit south Fulham residents or shop locally.”
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November 4, 2022