New traffic restrictions to be introduced in congested Richmond neighbourhood

By Charlotte Lillywhite - Local Democracy Reporter

29th Feb 2024 | Local History

New traffic restrictions to be introduced in congested Richmond neighbourhood. (Photo Credit: Google Maps).
New traffic restrictions to be introduced in congested Richmond neighbourhood. (Photo Credit: Google Maps).

New traffic restrictions will come into force in a congested South West London neighbourhood with streets so narrow they force pedestrians into the road.

Richmond Council approved restrictions on North Worple Way to tackle problems caused by rat-run drivers trying to dodge congestion on Mortlake High Street.

A ban on vehicles travelling west along North Worple Way will be introduced from 7am to 7pm on Mondays to Sundays on an experimental basis, with permit holders exempt.

The council's transport committee approved the restrictions on February 27.

A report by council officers described the North Worple Way area, bounded by Mortlake High Street, White Hart Lane, the railway line and Sheen Lane, as a series of narrow streets.

It said many of the pedestrian footways are "narrow and can sometimes lead to pedestrians entering the carriageway to pass one another."

The report said the closure of Hammersmith Bridge to vehicles and changes to parking bays on Alder Road had led to concerns over pedestrian safety, traffic levels and vehicle conflict in the area.

Some drivers travel west along North Worple Way to dodge long traffic queues on the high street, it added.

Residents showed support for the introduction of a ban on westbound traffic along the route from 7am to 7pm on Mondays to Sundays in a consultation last year.

Councillors said the restrictions aimed to tackle rat-running in the area at the meeting on February 27. Lib Dem councillor Marjory Millum said: "As someone who has to drive through this area every time I take my car and try and get out of Barnes, it is a rat-run. There is a queue of traffic trying to get from Mortlake up to the Chalkers Corner."

Lib Dem councillor Alexander Ehmann added: "The proof will be in the pudding but the attempt here is to come up with a proportionate response, one that pleasingly… has the support of residents and so let's hope it both continues to have the support, grows the support and is successful." 

Officers will assess the impact of the restrictions after they have been introduced.

They can be made permanent or removed after 18 months, with the first six months forming part of the public consultation period where residents can provide feedback.


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