- Work will include a protected two-way cycle track on the north side of the Hammersmith gyratory and new signals for cyclists at junctions
- The changes have been developed with Hammersmith & Fulham Council and will open a key link in a new 4.7km Cycleway connecting Kew Bridge, Gunnersbury, Chiswick and Hammersmith
- Hounslow Council will also be making changes to the temporary Cycleway 9 along Chiswick High Road
- New infrastructure will help to support London’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic but long-term Government funding required to progress future extensions of Cycleway 9
- Reducing danger on London’s roads is a vital part of TfL’s Vision Zero commitment to eliminating death and serious injury on the transport network
Transport for London (TfL) started work on Monday 29 November to transform Hammersmith gyratory, reducing danger to vulnerable road users on one of London’s most intimidating junctions as part of its Vision Zero goal of eliminating death and serious injury on the road network. There were 30 collisions on the gyratory in the three-year period to December 2020 of which five involved a cyclist.
The work is the next stage of improvements along the Cycleway 9 (C9) and will provide a vital link in the growing network of routes in west London. Currently, there is no infrastructure for safer cycling at this busy location, which creates a hostile and intimidating environment for people cycling and leaves them vulnerable to collisions with motor traffic. Roads and some local crossings are also difficult to navigate on foot. This new infrastructure will give people walking and cycling more space and give people confidence to travel safely.
In September this year, an average of 2,354 people a day were counted cycling on a newly installed section of C9 on Chiswick High Road. Recent cycle counts from the Hammersmith gyratory on 12 October counted 2,844 people cycling between 0700-1900, which shows that thousands of people stand to benefit from this new infrastructure every day.
In 2017, local people fed into the plans for walking and cycling improvements to Hammersmith gyratory. The changes will include:
- A protected two-way cycle track on the north side of Hammersmith gyratory
- Cyclist-specific signals at junctions to separate cyclists and motor vehicles
- Improvements for pedestrian safety at all junctions with side roads, including raised level crossings and more footway space
- New pedestrian crossing signals with ‘countdowns’ at the crossings of King Street, Beadon Road, Shepherd’s Bush Road, Queen Caroline Street, Hammersmith Road and Butterwick
- A new parallel crossing at the Butterwick junction to allow westbound cyclists to join the two-way cycle track
Work is set to be completed by spring 2022 and TfL is advising people in the area to check their journeys before they travel, as construction work will mean that there will be some disruption in the area.
The changes are part of a series of infrastructure upgrades by TfL, Hammersmith & Fulham Council and Hounslow Council along the busy Cycleway 9 corridor, which are enabling thousands of residents, visitors and families to cycle safely. Work on Chiswick High Road has created a protected route for cycling using light segregation wands, while Hammersmith & Fulham Council is constructing a Safer Cycling Pathway between Goldhawk Road and Hammersmith gyratory. A protected space for cycling has been constructed on the South Circular Road by Kew Bridge, with work on further measures west towards Brentford dependent on TfL’s ongoing discussions with Government for long-term sustained investment in London, which is required to avoid a ‘Managed Decline’ scenario.
Hounslow Council will be upgrading the current trial cycleway on Chiswick High Road, with new bus lanes and improvements to the existing scheme to improve cycle safety and accessibility. Once complete, the new cycle lane will remain in place under an experimental traffic order to allow TfL to gather data and feedback about how it is working.
Will Norman, London’s Walking and Cycling Commissioner said: “The Hammersmith gyratory is of London’s most intimidating junctions, and these changes will have huge benefits for both pedestrians and cyclists travelling around the area. Protecting vulnerable road users and making London’s junctions safer for all is a key part of our Vision Zero commitment to eliminate death and serious injuries on London’s roads, and these improvements will offer more space and make it easier to navigate local roads, as well as providing a vital link in the growing network of cycle routes in west London.”
Julie Lewington, Head of Projects & Programmes at TfL, said: “Walking and cycling are vital to the capital’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, which is why we’re continuing to work closely with local councils to ensure people can have access to high-quality infrastructure that keeps them safe. The changes at Hammersmith gyratory and Chiswick High Road will enable thousands of easier and safer journeys on foot and by bike each week and reduce danger at one of the area’s most intimidating junctions. We’d like to thank people in the area for their patience while construction work takes places and would advise people to check their journeys before they travel.”
Councillor Hanif Khan, Cabinet Member for Transport at Hounslow Council, said: “We want to make sure that cycling in Hounslow is as safe and easy as possible because it supports our environmental ambitions and enables healthier lifestyles; our aim is for the temporary Cycleway 9 to meet the needs of all users in our community.”
Casey Abaraonye, Chair of Hammersmith and Fulham Cyclists, said: “We are pleased that work is finally starting on this section of the cycleway. The gyratory is complex but it has long been a dangerous place and a major discouragement to cycling in the area. The upgrades will improve it both for those cycling and the many people walk across the roads there, including students and school children. It is a vital step in our aim for High Streets not Highways.”
Since May 2020, more than 100km of new or upgraded cycle lanes have been built or are under construction.
TfL also continues work on its Safer Junctions programme, which is reducing road danger at 73 dangerous junctions across London. Work has been completed at 43 junctions so far. All locations in the Safer Junctions programme had higher than average collision rates and this improvement work is a vital part of its Vision Zero ambition.
TfL’s world-first Direct Vision Standard, which reduces lethal blind spots on lorries, makes up another part of this work and is already helping to save lives and prevent life-changing injuries. The scheme requires owners of Heavy Good Vehicles (HGVs) weighing more than 12 tonnes to apply for a free permit that assigns vehicles a star rating based on how much the driver can see directly through their cab windows in order to be able to drive in London. Since its introduction, more than 70,000 HGVs have had safe systems fitted, improving protection for people walking, cycling or riding e-scooters or motorcycles and saving lives.