Murky Depths

News in London and beyond

Greenwich

TfL announce third round of emergency street funding: Bexley & Greenwich miss out again

Transport for London have announced the third round of funding for street projects to encourage walking and cycling as public transport capacity is severely reduced.

Perhaps unsurprisingly authorities which have failed to widely engage and consult such as Greenwich and Bexley have again missed out. Lewisham and Bromley saw their first awards, with 24 out of 33 authorities now seeing cash allocated.

Courtesy Lewisham Pedestrians @LewishamPedest1

I’m sorry for the endless groundhog day posts but what we are seeing is the result of some councils not to engage to any meaningful degree and failing to disclose what bids are being made. Thus are bids any good or extremely poor and failing to secure funds? Are many even being made in Greenwich?

Current circumstances are again highlighting long-standing systemic failings.

Many of those receiving funds in the first three rounds were authorities that already had plans in place this financial year to invest millions from new developments and parking income towards better public space – something Greenwich and Bexley did not. Lambeth has so far seen £2.6 million in emergency funds. Even before the current emergency finding, they were on track to allocate £5 million from parking income and £1.3 million from developer income:

Lambeth LIP funding

Greenwich is almost alone in London in allocating zero from parking income (as they again see a large budget shortfall as poor parking continues borough-wide) plus zero income from new developments this financial towards better streets and active living via TfL’s Local Implementation Plan:

2020/2021 allocation in second to left column.

There’s a clear correlation between those authorities that are open, transparent and already focused towards funding walking and cycling and those now winning funds.

Many London authorities also launched initiatives – and entire websites in many cases – asking the public what areas are suitable for funding bids. Greenwich Council put out one tweet. Bexley did nothing.

When it comes to keeping the public informed Bromley drew up a 40 page document which was placed online. Lewisham revealed a large number of projects and again revealed exactly what they were. Greenwich and Bexley have said little and Greenwich continually ignore requests for information.

New developments. Awful junctions

With Greenwich being just one of three councils across London never to have sought the use of cameras to enforce traffic infringements since 2003 it’s perhaps of little surprise they lag on this issue. Even now we don’t know if it’s active.

Ultimately it’s people who cannot drive – and often the poorest – who suffer through such lethargy and chronic problems in departments. Car use goes up, pollution goes up, health issues increase and many people simply can’t get about as buses with severely reduced capacity sail past without stopping. Cycle and walk? In many places it’s awful – and often in the midst of huge new developments that bring in many millions of pounds to the authority.

Woolwich High Street regularly sees parked cars – a rare quiet moment here

Greenwich have attempted a PR drive to distract attention from a lack of engagement and transparency. Yesterday they tweeted about a school street in Charlton. Good and all, but a question on who funded it went unanswered and there’s little information on how many are planned or where. Minutes after I saw a tweet from Hounslow Council highlighting a link to their webpage with a list of 10 sites.

There’s many similar examples.

 

 

 

 

9 Comments

  1. Disappointed

    You could not make this up if you tried.

    Given the known problems that TFL has had recently, you would think that RBG would be in ‘5th gear’ trying to get funding. It does not take a genius to know that this kind of money does not sit around for long.

    Knowing RBG, they will wait until the funds have been fully allocated and then spend the next year on a propaganda campaign complaining about lack of funding.

    To think for years you and other commentators have stated what can achieved and RBG has done very, very little. At the very least RBG could have evaluated the solution suggested.

    Murky – in my opinion we just have to accept that we the voters, in error, have elected the full cast of the Muppet Show to run the borough. The only saving grace is that their tenure is not permanent. A change is needed.

    • Steven Norris

      Disappointed, thats a bit harsh on the muppet show they gave lots of enjoyment to lots of people. Where RBG are concerned its more like couldn’t organise a drink up in a brewery

  2. Graham

    As I have said before Greenwich and Bexley Boroughs also do get a raw deal from TFL.

    Wether it is giving Greenwich & Bexley Local Authorities money for funding street improvements or if TFL are funding improvements to public transoirt in the Boroughs,

    I have excluded crossrail from this as this is a separate schme.

    I understand the School Street Closures for Charlton Manor School which affect Indus Road at junction with Hornfair Road and Charlton Dene and Nigeria Road at the Junction with Hornfair Road was funded by Greenwich Council, The closures are in Place for about an hour to an hour and half each school day at the beginning and end off the day.

    I support these school street closure schemes to allow our children to go and from school safely and to encourage more walking and cycling in the Borough.

    • Charles Calthrop

      My bet is Greenwich is not even included on TFLs list as they know the money will be sent anywhere but to the areas TFL would like to see it spent on. Like the kids at the back of the class who don’t pay attention, even the most dedicated lecturer will finally stop holding the class back and leave them to figure out things on their own rather than try to teach them something…anything.

  3. Greenwich Park Fan

    Previously I kept telling myself RBG have an ace up the sleeve but obviously not.

    We pay tax just like everyone else but we are missing out here for what reason.

    • Graham

      Greenwich Park Fan, I agree for what reason are RBG missing out ?

      Charles has made a very good and valid point where some funding from TFL is not being spentby RBG on the projects the funds were intended for. Some people would see this as a misuse of public funds and would raise questions about the current Council Leadership.

      IF TFL are penalising RBG for this I do not know.

      • Charles Calthrop

        I don’t believe that TFL have officially (or are even allowed to) discounted RBGs applications, but TFL also have to account to someone. For all we know the Borough may be unofficially on the outs – after all on paper they have a healthy income from the building work and show little to no interest in meaningful public consultation.

        Meanwhile boroughs like Waltham Forest and Hackney (again both Labour strongholds) actively apply for and get money for public improvements, which are there for the public to see. Cycling is a big thing on the other side of the river and while the improvements sometimes means a headache for the poor motorists, its a clear attempt to do something rather than hedge bets and pocket the money.

      • PaulSuperUnknown

        RBG Council is a nightmare! It’s good to see that TFL has finally become wise to RBG ways! RBG have got to have £100 million sunk into GGLaB by now, with no obvious results. Personally, I know of no one who has received/found work through GGLaB! Is it not time we received some accountability for all the money that we’ve pumped into it?

        • Graham

          I agree PaulSuperUnknown.

          We do need accountability for the money given to GLLAB. Including on what the money given to GLLAB from section 106 and CIL was spent on.

          As my understanding was secion 106 and CIL money was given to RBG from Developers and TFL for example to improve public realm, streets and transport around the Borough etc ?.

          As many of our estates around the Borough have not seen work to public realm completed and the estates like Thornham Street in Greenwich, Coldharbour Estate in Eltham and Abbey Wood Estate public realms remain in a poor state of disrepair.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Theme by Anders Norén