In 2020 we introduced the Railton LTN in response to the impact of Covid-19 on travel in the borough. However, LTNs were something we had been considering before the pandemic as part of our long-term transport strategy, which launched in 2019. The Railton LTN and other similar schemes were introduced more quickly than planned because we needed to help people travel safely and sustainably whilst capacity on public transport was dramatically reduced.
Following monitoring and public consultation on the scheme, we decided to make it permanent in December 2021.
What is an LTN?
Low traffic neighbourhoods make it safer and easier to walk, wheel, scoot and cycle by stopping cars, vans and other vehicles from using quiet streets as shortcuts. Over time, LTNs can encourage people to switch from driving to more sustainable ways of travelling, like walking, public transport and cycling. This is one of the ways we can tackle the climate emergency in Lambeth.
The impact of the LTN and our future plans
Following the emergency introduction of the LTN, we have been monitoring the impact on local traffic, cycling and air quality and have been responding to resident feedback on the scheme.
In August 2021, we published data that showed the scheme was successfully reducing traffic in and around the area and increasing cycling.
As a result, we announced we were considering making the scheme permanent and held a public consultation to hear people's views on the trial.
We analysed the consultation responses and data on the impact of the scheme before deciding to make the scheme permanent in December 2021.
Our monitoring found that:
- Motor vehicle traffic fell by 63 per cent inside the LTN and by 18 per cent when including boundary roads. It fell by 67 per cent on Shakespeare Road and by around 3,000 cars per day on Railton Road.
- Traffic on boundary roads generally reduced: Effra Road and Coldharbour Lane East by Loughborough Junction were down 20 per cent. But Coldharbour Lane West between Brixton and Atlantic Roads was up 16 per cent.
- Cycling rates were high before the LTN and have stayed that way. But on Railton Road they have nearly doubled, increasing by 92 per cent.
- Cycling has slightly increased on routes such as Milkwood Road, Dulwich Road and Brixton Water Lane.
- The LTN has had some impact on air quality and we expect to see more substantial changes over time.
- Reductions in nitrogen dioxide are five times greater in London than elsewhere in the UK, partly due to measures such as the Ultra-Low Emission Zone.
- All the places where we analysed air quality that was classed as sensitive, such as St Jude’s C of E school, Evelyn Grace Academy and Effra Nursery School, had air quality within legal air quality limits.
Railton LTN monitoring reports
We have published two monitoring reports on the Railton LTN. These contain detailed data on the impact of the scheme.
Read more about the scheme
This project is one of five low traffic neighbourhoods that were accelerated as part of our emergency response to the coronavirus pandemic. Our Low Traffic Neighbourhood programme is an important part of our transport strategy and climate action plan to reduce traffic across the borough by 27% by 2030. You can read more about other projects in the programme.