Olive Road (W5) area is a low traffic neighbourhood (LTN) that has been introduced in August 2020, on an experimental basis, made possible with funding from Transport for London (TfL). There was significant concern that large numbers of people would drive in order to avoid contact with others on public transport due to social distancing measures. This could potentially lead to a large increase in rat-run traffic through this area.
Our streets are simply not designed for some of the high levels of traffic we are seeing on local roads. This is why the council is supporting residents to choose active travel like walking or cycling wherever possible, instead of taking shorter journeys in the car.
Evidence from across London and Ealing’s trials indicates that LTNs can help that change. LTNs can help to improve air quality and cutting down on harmful pollution that affects all of our health, our environment, and the climate. With reduced volumes of through traffic in neighbourhoods, it also can make using our roads and streets safer and more pleasant, making it easier to choose alternative, car free ways of getting around.
Description of the scheme
There was a temporary installation of wooden planters and accompanying signage to discourage rat-run traffic at the following locations:
- Olive Road/Popes Lane junction - full closure
- Olive Road/Sunderland Road junction - signage only, no entry westbound except cyclists
- Olive Road/Durham Road junction - signage only, no entry westbound except cyclists
The emergency services and refuse vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists remain unaffected and continue to have access through the road closures. All other vehicles may have to find alternative routes. Residents continue to have access by car to their properties, but this may be via alternative directions.
Data collected to assess the impacts of Olive Road’s LTN to April 2021
A summary of what the data indicates up to April 2021 for LTN 8: Olive Road is as follows:
A little more than 200 comments were added to the dedicated Commonplace survey on LTN 8 by approximately 150 users made up of residents, and individuals who study, work, own a business and commute through the area.
32% indicated that they were in favour of the scheme, 1% were neutral, while 67% were against the proposals. Approximately 1,500 households are within the area affected by LTN 8, which includes boundary roads, equating to a response rate of less than 10% notwithstanding that all responses were from residents.
The most cited concerns were an increase in traffic, followed by the generation of longer journeys due to a change in vehicle access. Meanwhile, the top reasons expressed by those who indicated support for the proposals were that the LTN increases road safety, promoting an environment that is more pedestrian and cycle friendly.
LTN 8 was designed to prevent traffic heading west along Pope’s Lane and then north up South Ealing Road from routing through residential streets to avoid the signalised junction of these two roads. The introduction of the LTN might therefore have been expected to have an effect on traffic levels and congestion on the westbound approach along Pope’s Lane to the South Ealing Road signals. The Floow traffic flow data for this stretch of road indicates that traffic levels have increased following the introduction of the LTN. The iBus data indicates that, since the LTN became established, congestion is not a particular cause for concern. The spike in bus journey times in the second half of November is associated with gasworks for which there were temporary traffic lights at the Pope’s Lane/South Ealing Road junction.
During the same time, approximately 100 emails were also sent to the council. Emails voiced objection to the proposal, concern that the scheme would worsen local air quality, and cause congestion on main roads.
Data from air quality monitoring from the diffusion tube placed in LTN 8 demonstrate that NO2 mean concentration levels from both the LTN initiative and the baseline NO2 regular monitoring programme, over the same period, remain below the EU limit value of 40micrograms per cubic metre (µɡ/m³).
Analysis also shows anti-social behaviour and crime patterns in LTNs follow a similar pattern across the borough overall, suggesting that the introduction of LTNs has not had an impact on overall crime levels.
The council continues to meet regularly with the emergency services to discuss the LTNs and work collaboratively to ensure that they feedback into the schemes. In December 2020, the council agreed to remove all bollards and replace with CCTV enforcement as part of the LTNs interim assessment to ensure that any potential emergency service access issues were removed.
Find out more information on the data sources used to assess the impacts of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods. More data will be made available on this page, and on each respective LTN’s page, in the coming weeks.
The final non-statutory consultation ended on 23 July 2021.