Sunday 1 May 2022

Safe Cycleways Need Safe Junctions

Ealing Council leader Peter Mason announced completion of works on a short stretch of the Uxbridge Road cycle tracks on Thursday.

Some fantastic new cycle lanes running along Uxbridge Road in Southall. Still more to come too! 

The included photos showed a re-paved section of the pre-existing bidirectional tracks on the pavement north of Southall Park.  These did not show any of the changes to junction crossings that the council had consulted on.

Roly West reached out to ECC and asked for advice on an improved design to draw over some SpeedPulse drone footage of the junction of Uxbridge Road and Milford Road.  A still of that footage is shown here:

The trouble with junctions like these is that cars can turn left into Milford Road at speed, thanks to the broad corners.  When they do, they approach people cycling across the junction from behind.  This is a dangerous situation not unlike the infamous Ipley Cross junction, which has recently been re-engineered.

The resulting proposed design takes its inspiration from Boston Gardens at Boston Manor Road, where Hounslow Council put a "pocket" so that motorists only need to worry about one type of crossing traffic at any time.  This design ensures that motorists encounter people cycling and walking at right angles, instead of crossing their path from behind.

In addition, the corners would be sharpened, forcing motorists to slow to safe speeds while turning.  This would also create more space to plant greenery along the verge, improving the character of the area.

Councillor Mason confirmed that junction works are still planned, and we hope that there is still an opportunity to bring this track up to the standard set by Hounslow Council right in Ealing's own back yard.

After all, as Tom Scott concluded in his video about Ipley Cross:

...road safety, and anyone's safety, shouldn't require faith in human nature.