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Towards Healthy Streets

Featured in the Future Transport London Newsletter September 2022

All London boroughs recognise the reality of the climate crisis and are committed to improving sustainability following the Mayor’s commitment to make London net zero-carbon by 2030 and to work towards 80 per cent of all trips in London being made by walking, cycling and public transport by 2041. However, progress by boroughs towards these aims is variable.

Healthy Streets Scorecard is a coalition of several sustainable transport campaigning groups including London Living Streets, London Cycling Campaign, Sustrans and Future Transport London set up to measure the progress London boroughs are making towards these aims. The scorecard measures ‘input indicators’ which are actions boroughs can take to make streets healthier (20 mph, modal filtering, controlled parking and miles of protected cycle track), and ‘output indicators’ which show the results of these measures (mode share, active travel rates, casualties and vehicle ownership).

The overall score shows how boroughs have performed. In the main, inner London boroughs score better than outer ones. Partly this is due to the fact that it is easier to achieve a high score in areas of high housing density although, taking that into account, inner boroughs still do better. Excluding the City of London (exceptional because of its small area and lack of residents) top scorer is Islington and bottom of the table is Hillingdon. It would be expected that car ownership would be higher in Outer London and lower in Inner London but the difference between these two boroughs is startling. In Hillingdon there are more cars than household whilst in Islington only 33 per cent of households have cars. It is also noticeable that Hillingdon is one of only two boroughs (the other, curiously enough, is Tower Hamlets) in which the number of registered cars has increased in the last year.

A new measure this year is the length of bus lanes as a percentage of bus roads. Top is Hackney. 50 per cent of bus routes are protected. At the opposite end are five boroughs with less than five per cent protected (Bexley, Bromley, Barnet, Redbridge and Sutton).

The measure for low traffic neighbourhoods is expressed as the area of LTNs as a proportion of total areas deemed appropriate for them. Hackney comes top with 70 per cent with Bexley at the bottom with four.

Other areas measured include lengths of protected cycle track (Waltham Forest good and Kensington bad) and lengths of school streets. Nearly 50 per cent of schools in Islington are protected by traffic free streets at school opening and closing times whilst Bexley, Hammersmith and Sutton have none.

The aim of the Scorecard is to help councils and residents compare how well their borough is doing in relation to others and identify areas for action. We hope that these data contribute to this cause.

The full analysis can be see at

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