HS2 Lorry Holding Area study is yet another failure to take into account impacts on Camden
Camden Council is again pushing HS2 Ltd to address the impact of polluting and potentially dangerous lorries on Camden’s roads.
HS2 Ltd has published a shortlist of seven possible sites for an additional Lorry Holding Area to be used during HS2 construction, five of which are in Camden. The final decision about the location of any additional Lorry Holding Area will be made after Royal Assent, when proposals for HS2 and lorry routing have been worked up in more detail.
The Council is clear that the case for an additional Lorry Holding Area has not yet been adequately made by HS2 Ltd. If one is to go ahead, any further site must not increase the impacts of the scheme on local residents, cyclists and road users.
This Lorry Holding Area report follows two others published in recent weeks by HS2 Ltd on transporting materials by rail and Hampstead Road Bridge, both of which fell short of the Council’s and Camden residents’ expectations.
Background on the report
The report is the outcome of an assurance, given by HS2 Ltd to Transport for London (TfL) in December last year, to consider options for reasonable alternatives to a potential Lorry Holding Area at Park Crescent in the City of Westminster.
The report lists 17 options which were originally considered as alternatives to the site initially proposed at Park Crescent. The Council has been successful in persuading HS2 Ltd to reject a number of these, including eight potential sites in Camden, on the grounds that they would have increased construction traffic on inappropriate, residential roads.
The report concludes that seven locations are reasonable alternatives to a possible on-street lorry holding area adjacent the westbound carriageway of Park Crescent. Five of the seven are in Camden. The possible alternative locations in Camden are on:
- Granby Terrace overbridge (on the basis of two-way operation at the junction of Granby Terrace overbridge and A400 Hampstead Road);
- A501 Euston Road (eastbound off-slip at junction with A400 Hampstead Road and A400 Tottenham Court Road);
- Hampstead Road (immediately north and south of Drummond Street);
- Freight Lane; and
- Finchley Road O2 Centre Car Park.
The Council is particularly concerned that HS2 Ltd has decided to include Granby Terrace overbridge in the shortlist, despite opposition to this by both the Council and TfL as this option would direct additional construction traffic via residential roads which are not on the Strategic Road Network (especially on the Regent’s Park Estate – Stanhope Street and Robert Street).
The proposal for a secondary Lorry Holding Area is in addition to the existing plans for a Lorry Holding Area at London Zoo car park.
HS2 Ltd has put forward the seven options as “reasonable alternatives” to the planned on-street lorry holding adjacent the westbound carriageway of Park Crescent, “based on comparative appraisal of the potential impacts”. The options will be subject to further study and the report states that other sites may come forward as further work progresses. It will also scrutinise the potential for holding lorries in site compounds as the design of those compounds progress.
The Council is therefore arguing that HS2 Ltd must:
- first and foremost prove the case for this additional Lorry Holding Area
- if required, contractors must develop a resilient construction plan that minimises the time that a secondary Lorry Holding Area is needed
- undertake appropriate public engagement, should the need for a secondary Lorry Holding Area be proven.