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Tuesday 30 June 2015 2.50pm
Tuesday 30 June 2015 3.00pm
It wasn't Sir Colin Buchanan nor Traffic in Towns that led to the Elephant and Castle having subways. The current subways predated that reported by 4 years and the original subways at this junction pre-dated the report by 52 years. The point is that the case and need for extra pedestrian space at an already very congested junction was plain to see. It wasn't a design that came from a nation-wide manifesto, an insensitive top-down belief in multi-level traffic flow and separation which Traffic in Towns has come to be known as, it came from pragmatic, location-specific needs. It was then woefully maintained (except for flurry of colour added in the mid 1990s with murals and tiles) and blighted with poorly designed often inaccurate signage for decades that turned a relatively straight forward configuration of five direct subways across each of the junctions five radial roads and two more subways linking the centre into a labyrinth (unfortunately labelled 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20).

Ironically the plan being built today comes from top down thinking applied to all of TfL's territory which can be summarised as (1) all pedestrian subways are bad and must go (2) cyclists deserve segregation from motor traffic, pedestrians don't (3) pedestrians should be allowed to go where they like and things that discourage them from risky behaviour should be removed where possible (4) cyclists may now use pavements with minimal signage to warn pedestrians of their weaving (5) turn transport interchanges into 'places to linger' to nurture inward investment from retail developers (6) whatever you do don't admit you're reducing the net amount of pedestrian space in favour of motor traffic, just press on with bare faced fibbery because it's so hard to believe the truth anyway.
Tuesday 30 June 2015 3.07pm
Well the roundabout is an effing nightmare at the moment and I don't see what the point was. More pollution, more traffic, more noise, ..
Tuesday 30 June 2015 3.26pm
I know it's a rhetorical question, but I'll answer anway. As JPM says, it's a fad we're getting here, well meaning, but flawed because it's not about rationally trying to get safe, pleasant travel for all, it's now about the piazzafication of cities (squeezing out commercial value from transport infrastructure and transport budget, of which the Garden Bridge is the flagship project of this fad). It's seldom said but TfL didn't actually want to do this at E&C. They were forced to by Boris and Labour Southwark, so the TfL design team were all moved off the project around 2012/13 and new more malleable engineers were assigned to it who would deliver the peninsula Peter John and Boris so much wanted as a sweetener to developers who they envisaged would embrace the forthcoming 'peninsula' as a retail recreation space (but have no turned their back on it). The negative side effects were tucked away for only the dogged to dig out or calculate for themselves. The politicians were sadly encouraged to press ahead by misguided subway-hating victoriana-loving campaigners like Southwark Living Streets and other locals who neither live by, work by nor commute through the junction and they dressed up the plans as pro-cycling (even though London Cycling Campaign campaigned against what's being built). Such is the murky tale.
Wednesday 1 July 2015 7.40am
I can live with right in spirit, if not in fact!

There certainly is a current push to convert roundabouts into loops (or peninsularisation as the jargon goes) and its been happening all over London - Elephant South Rouundabout, Archway (it's north of the river!), Now Elephant North and plans for Waterloo. If I were Bricklayers Arms roundabout, I'd be looking over my shoulder - particularly as the huge size of the roundabout (and the flyover) is a hangover from the abandoned London Ringways project of the 1960s (read about it on wikipedia)

The other thing to note is that a couple of months ago TfL launched a big push for selling/developing the land they own to help fund London's transport network, forming partnerships with big property developers to help them do this.

While they give the examples of stations and space under arches, TfL also own the land in the big London Roundabouts - and these chunks of prime SE1 must surely be attractive for development.
Wednesday 1 July 2015 8.59am
jpm wrote:
If I were Bricklayers Arms roundabout, I'd be looking over my shoulder - particularly as the huge size of the roundabout (and the flyover) is a hangover from the abandoned London Ringways project of the 1960s (read about it on wikipedia)
I agree, we can expect hoardings promoting the 'stunning apartments' of "One Bricklayers" there in due course.
Friday 3 July 2015 3.56pm
The subway under newington causeway closed down this week, there are no signposts to the crossing further down opposite the salvation army. Result is we have lots more people crossing the road without signals, so much for pedestrian safety!
Friday 3 July 2015 4.07pm
Tried to get from Princess Street Surgery to Boots today. Went through the subway between the Tabernacle and the shopping centre and wondered why in the world that particular tunnel along with the one under the New Kent Road, can't be saved. With so much traffic it MUST be more sensible than bringing the vehicles to a grinding halt for crossings. Surely it's not too late...
Saturday 4 July 2015 8.57am
TFL have a subway policy, however none of it applies to the E and C. They harp on about crime, disabled access , increased journey time and implenting street crossings where traffic moves at 30mph or more - none of which are applicable.

If someone had common sense they could have retiled the area as it is now and made a historical tour of the E and C akin to the Selaron steps with Chaplin / Krays etc ( I know the current one has this ), put down nice paving instead of concrete and lighting etc as part of the regen ie a place where tourists would go and photo due to its uniqueness ie a place to GO TO not GO THROUGH.

Who will go to a piazza in the middle of a massively congested roundabout.

Money has changed hand at a level and this is the result.
Saturday 4 July 2015 9.25am
Oops. You really think brown envelopes have been exchanged? Dunno about that. But could we not find a compromise and leave at least SOME of the underpasses? Is it too late even at this stage to get someone to change their mind?
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