Improvements to start in Queen’s Crescent this May
Work to transform the Queen’s Crescent area, will soon begin, following a public consultation.
These changes will bring heavily anticipated public realm improvements to the area on a trial basis, before a full public consultation in six months’ time.
This final consultation will incorporate the learning from the trial, together with the scheme of public realm works previously co-designed with the community as part of the Mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund.
“The consultation results showed us that residents want to trial changes on Queen’s Crescent. We know from listening to local people that they want to make walking on Queen’s Crescent easier, to green the area, and to reduce the dominance of cars.
“Walking was by far the main way in which people told us they travelled to Queen’s Crescent. Car ownership in this area is low while the number of pedestrians is high.
“Residents have also been waiting a long time for plans to come forward, so I am pleased we are now able to bring this to trial.”
Running in early 2021, the public consultation provided valuable feedback and the council is now proceeding with a modified scheme based on this feedback from the local community.
An overall majority of those who responded to the consultation indicated that they did not agree that Queen’s Crescent is currently a pleasant place to visit, shop and spend time. The council wants to make Queen’s Crescent a more pleasant place that serves the diverse local community and for people to want to come and spend time and shop here.
The scheme will trial:
- A motor traffic free environment on Queen’s Crescent between Bassett Street and Weedington Road.
- A restriction on motor vehicle movements on Grafton Road, approximately 50 metres north of the junction with Queen’s Crescent.
- A restriction on motor vehicle movements on Weedington Road at its northern arm of Queen’s Crescent.
There will be an exemption for loading for businesses within the zone at permitted times and parking and loading will still be available on sections of Queen’s Crescent outside of this area. The measures on Weedington Road and Grafton Road will protect streets such as Vicars Road and Wellesley Road from through traffic seeking a route between Malden Road and Prince of Wales Road or Kentish Town Road.
Details of the scheme can be found at: www.camden.gov.uk/Safe-and-healthy-streets
Overall, 49.7% people agreed with plans for a motor traffic-free zone on Queen’s Crescent verses 43.5% of people who did not.
The plans also take the opportunity to improve access to the Mosque on Weedington Road, and provide a pick up/drop off area outside the Sheltered Housing Block/Queen’s Crescent Library.
The council will also work in partnership with residents and businesses on further improvements.
Councillor Harrison continued:
“We also want to introduce things that people asked for in the consultation such as seating, trees and running the market on additional days, as well as exploring how the new public space created by the trial could be used by the community and businesses.
“This could include activities and events, or food businesses using the trial area for temporary tables and chairs, as seen elsewhere as part of our successful Streateries programme.”
The learning from these temporary changes will inform the final design of permanent public realm improvements, building on the scheme previously co-designed with the community as part of the Mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund.
Camden has also recently secured new funding, in addition to the £1.1m already granted to deliver the permanent public realm improvements on Queen’s Crescent. The additional £813,000, obtained from the Mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund Accelerator, is part of £22.1m being made available by the government to enhance projects that are already under development.
The council hopes to use this new funding to deliver a more transformational programme of permanent improvements for Queen’s Crescent that will have a positive impact for years to come, whatever the outcome of the trial.
The council will be collecting feedback and engaging with residents and businesses throughout the trial, to understand how the temporary measures are being used and where improvements can be made. The public can comment on the changes once in place via www.safetravelcamden.commonplace.is
Work is scheduled to commence on Thursday 27 May 2021. Six months after the trial commences a full public consultation on the scheme will be undertaken.
The attached image is an artist’s impression of the temporary elements installed as part of the trial, actual locations and materials are likely to vary.
- Data the council has gathered shows that over 90% of trips made for shopping purposes in Camden take place by walking, cycling or public transport. The council wants its streets to have more space for everyone to walk and cycle, for you to be able to breathe cleaner air, for children to get to and from school safely, and for businesses to be able to flourish.
- Following the public consultation exercise that was under taken from January 27 to February 28 2021 and considering the options proposed in an Officer Decision Report the Director of Environment and Sustainability, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for a Sustainable Camden, has made a decision to proceed with a modified version of the scheme proposed via a trial. The Decision Report is available online here. Six months after the trial commences a full public consultation on a scheme for Queens Crescent will be undertaken.
- Following the public consultation the council undertook a detailed review of the scheme and worked to modify the scheme in light of comments raised:
- An overall majority of those who responded to the consultation indicated that they did not agree that Queen’s Crescent is currently a pleasant place to visit, shop and spend time. We want to make Queen’s Crescent a more pleasant place that serves the diverse local community and for people to want to come and spend time, and money here.
- Overall, 49.7% people agreed with plans for a motor traffic-free zone on Queen’s Crescent verses 43.5% of people who did not. Walking was by far the main way in which people who responded to the consultation told us they travelled to Queen’s Crescent. Creating an environment which encourages and makes this a safer activity is something the Council wants to progress in line with its transport strategy.
- Overall 49.9% of those who responded to the consultation did not agree with the proposal for a motor vehicle restriction on Grafton Road. The council have reviewed the feedback on this scheme and in light of this have modified the scheme while achieving the same objective, to reduce the risk of through-traffic on Vicars Road and Wellesley Road, and in an arrangement that will better enable regular HGV access to West Hampstead Motors.
- The council have also modified the proposed motor traffic free zone on Queen’s Crescent to improve access to the Mosque on Weedington Road and provide a pick up and drop off area, for passengers of motor vehicles, outside the Sheltered Housing Block/Queen’s Crescent Library. This has been done by reducing the length of the motor traffic free area from circa 105 meters to 90 metres. This arrangement will mean that there will be less parking loss on Weedington Road and that pick up or drop off for those traveling by motor vehicles can be undertaken at either end of the 90-metre zone or half way along this length via Allcroft Road. Parking will still be available on sections of Queen’s Crescent outside of the motor traffic-free environment.