Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Streatham's message to Sadiq on A23 road deaths

Streatham mums and other members of the Safer A23 in Streatham campaign have sent a message to new mayor Sadiq Khan, asking him: "What will you do to end road deaths on the A23?"

With 41 deaths and life-changing injuries on Streatham Hill and Streatham High Road in the last five years, campaigners want lower, enforced speed limits and the road re-designed to prioritise the safety and environment for local people.

Green Councillor Scott Ainslie joined families on Streatham Hill on Tuesday, holding aloft banners and placards for passing motorists and pedestrians to see.

Streatham Hill Green Party member, Chris Holt, who organised the event, said:  "With a new mayor now in charge of Transport for London, responsible for the A23, we hope we'll see a change and transport planners will at last take action on the tragic death toll on the road divides our community.

"Sadiq lives nearby in Tooting, so we hope he'll make it a priority to turn the A23 from a dirty, dangerous blight on Streatham into a people-friendly road that serves the community it passes through."

A letter was sent to all the mayoral candidates in last week's London Elections asking them to support the Safer A23 Campaign.

In response the Green Party's Sian Berry wrote:  "I am very happy indeed to support all your calls. I know that Streatham Green Party has been at the forefront of campaigning to sort out what is one of the most dangerous and polluted roads in London, and has also been working with Green London Assembly members to do so, including the St Leonard's junction on the A23. I am also aware of the huge concern that the road causes both local people and local businesses.

"I know that Green Streatham councillor Scott Ainslie and Jonathan Bartley met with Lambeth Council before Christmas to encourage them to lobby TfL to get the High Road reclassified as a High Street, and as Mayor I would support that.

"I am also aware that they have carried out an air pollution monitoring project along the high road after the Labour Party on Lambeth Council voted against air pollution monitoring outside local schools. They found that air pollution levels were breaching EU limits along the A23 - something that I know is of huge concern to local parents in particular.

"Now that Greens have successfully got Lambeth Council to adopt a 20mph borough wide limit, I would want the A23 to also have a 20mph limit along it to smooth traffic flow and make it safer, and in the longer term would want a redesign, particularly of the St Leonard's junction, where traffic flow has been prioritised over people's lives. This is simply unacceptable.

"Streatham has also had to wait far too long for the third section of the High Road to have its central reservation sorted out, and would support the replacement by 2017, as well as more pedestrian crossings, greater time to cross, segregated cycle lanes (which I believe should have been introduced when the second stage of the central reservation work was carried out) and improvements to calm traffic. I would also support greater accessibility for shops along the High Road."