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View from the street: Only when our leaders admit there is a problem can we reduce the reliance on cars

View from the street: Only when our leaders admit there is a problem can we reduce the reliance on cars

Opinion Haringey Cyclists’ Jim Bewsher does not think the ‘active travel’ funding Haringey was awarded was spent wisely. Back in May Catherine West MP set…

Saturday, Oct 17

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Opinion Haringey Cyclists’ Jim Bewsher does not think the ‘active travel’ funding Haringey was awarded was spent wisely. Back in May Catherine West MP set out in these pages the need to urgently give Haringey residents alternative ways to travel when lockdown eased, while public transport was restricted.

Haringey received a high level of funding for emergency “active travel” measures, but four months later you’ll struggle to spot results: a few stretches of wider pavements and upgraded cycle lane, not much else. You may also want to watch:

Unsurprisingly, we’re now seeing a surge in car traffic, with Haringey’s communities bearing the brunt of council inaction. Residential streets and main roads are filling up.

Why is Haringey doing so little compared to neighbouring boroughs including Hackney, Islington and Enfield? The council seems to always defer to the car. Across London there is a shift away from unrestrained car access, because of the consequences for everyone. Elsewhere in London, modest restrictions to through routes for motor traffic and swapping car parking on main roads for bus lanes and cycle tracks is unleashing a huge untapped demand for walking and cycling. So why are Haringey’s leaders stuck in old ways that keep residents dependent on cars and active travel only for the fit and foolhardy? Why don’t they recognise that most households don’t have access to a car and reflect the needs of our diverse and vibrant communities?

The funding Haringey was given seems to have been spent so poorly it’s […]

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