We could be saying sayonara to cars in Hackney. The borough wants to ban through-traffic from motor vehicles in 75 percent of the area, turning the majority of its streets into Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs).
In what is being called ‘the country’s most ambitious plan’ to fight air pollution, the council has launched a three-year strategy to introduce traffic restrictions, while increasing bike hangars, electric vehicle charging stations and car-sharing in the area.
Currently, roughly half the streets in Hackney already have traffic restrictions, so this would see a quarter of all roads given new measures. Under the new plan, Dalston, Hoxton, Chatsworth Road, Craven Walk, Cazenove Road and Stamford Hill will have LTNs installed between now and 2026.
In a statement, a spokesperson said: ‘We would like to see all motorised traffic transition to low-emission vehicles or electric vehicles.’
Mayor of Hackney Philip Glanville said the LTNs would make Hackney the borough with the most car restrictions, public electric vehicle chargers and bicycle parking in London.
‘This is the most ambitious plan in London, if not the most ambitious in the country, building on an incredible track record in this borough,’ he said.
The council also wants to bring in ‘school streets’, which will control traffic at drop-off and pick-up times for all Hackney’s primary schools, with a view to expanding this to secondary schools.
A recent study by Westminster University called London’s LTNs an ‘overwhelming success’, finding that the restrictions ‘substantially’ reduce traffic in residential areas without having too much impact on nearby main roads.
Some residents, however, have said they’ve seen increased traffic on roads outside of LTNs after their installation, with campaign group Stop Horrendous Hackney Road Closures even taking the council to court. The group was unsuccessful but continues to raise money.