LTNs ‘protect’ residents from long standing rises in traffic

A low traffic neighbourhood (LTN) in Hackney is set to be made permanent, following analysis of traffic data, air quality monitoring, comments from residents and an equalities impact assessment.

The Homerton scheme was one of 19 LTN’s introduced by Hackney Council as part of plans to rebuild a greener Hackney in the wake of the pandemic.

The scheme uses three traffic filters – in the form of planters in the road – which permit only cyclists, emergency and waste vehicles to pass through. These were installed in Barnabas Road, Ashenden Road and Meeson Street in June 2020. 

Analysis of traffic, air quality and bus speeds data following the LTN’s introduction shows that:

  • Traffic was down by 35% inside the LTN and by 5% on boundary roads
  • Air quality has improved at eight of nine monitored locations in the area
  • Average bus speeds in the area have improved: from 6.9mph in 2019 to 7.2mph in 2021.

Throughout the trial, the council encouraged people to respond to its Commonplace page, which was used to identify issues with the LTN and make changes where appropriate. In total, 1,694 responses were received – 1,425 of these were deemed unique. 

Just over a third (37%) of Commonplace responses wanted all or some of the filters to be made permanent, with 62% saying none should be made permanent. 

In the local area (those who gave E9 or E5 postcodes), 45% of responses wanted all or some of the filters to be made permanent, with 54% saying none should be made permanent. 

Among people who do not use a car or van to get around, 63% wanted all or some of the LTN to be made permanent. 

The top two concerns raised in resident responses were increased traffic and air pollution, which is why the Council has completed comprehensive monitoring of the scheme before making a decision on whether or not to make it permanent.

Cllr Mete Coban MBE, cabinet member for energy, waste, transport and public realm, said: “LTNs are important because they protect our residents from long standing rises in traffic in Hackney – 40% of which does not start or end in the borough – and they support people to walk, cycle and shop locally, improving air quality for everyone.

“In the aftermath of COP26, we also need to do more to tackle transport emissions, which account for 25% of CO2 emissions in the borough.

“In making the Homerton LTN permanent, we have considered the reductions in traffic and air pollution, comments from residents, and completed a comprehensive equalities impact assessment, looking at the impact of the LTN on those with protected characteristics, such as race, gender and disability.”

02 December 2021