Notorious Greenwich roundabout to stay as TfL seek to extend cycle lane to Woolwich

Transport for London have announced an intension to extend the dedicated cycle lane from Greenwich beyond Charlton to Woolwich.

However the notorious, dangerous and ugly Blackwall flyover is to stay as it is, and there is still no plan to continue through Woolwich town centre after Greenwich Council refused to help with funding at levels requested by TfL.

Underneath flyover

TfL list a number of proposed changes, including a “two-way segregated cycle way along the A206 from Anchor & Hope Lane to Woolwich Ferry roundabout”.

Pedestrians crossing will change from staggered to straight across, new crossings on the A206 and wider paving.


However there is one obvious caveat, with TfL stating “expected to begin in spring 2024, subject to funding“.

In recent weeks the proposed route of a lane through Woolwich town centre was revealed which was covered here, though as it stands it will end at the busy Woolwich ferry roundabout.

Lane would end here

The “subject to funding” is the big thing to watch though. Transport for London’s latest funding agreement limits spending on public realm and street projects as construction inflation rises sharply.

TfL’s proposed Woolwich town centre route from ferry to Plumstead segregated lane

That means borough councils would need to step up, though in recent weeks Greenwich Council have refused to contribute Section 106 income from major developments at anywhere near levels that TfL requested.

Approved in front of Woolwich Tesco

At that particular site, TfL sought £944,000 for cycle lane improvements. Greenwich opted for £150,000.

Two weeks later Greenwich approved a development nearby for a new leisure centre and nearly 500 homes.

A206 would be altered

TfL sought £766,862 for cycling provision. Greenwich replied that “a minimum of £50,000 has been secured towards towards Cycleway 4.”

Woolwich leisure centre plans include hundreds of homes.

Those low levels were despite the GLA and TfL calling for investment in active travel to dissuade car usage.

Same seen elsewhere

For many years this site has been keeping track of how and where Greenwich Council spend income from new development across the borough.

Those two recent examples from Woolwich town centre follow a long-term pattern of refusing to allocate anything but small sums from parking and development to street changes including at Plumstead gyratory where 1,750 homes were approved.

Shortly after they approved plans for 333 homes nearby. On both occasions Greenwich Council again ignored calls from various bodies to allocate greater levels of related income to encourage walking and cycling leaving this as a major route:

Plumstead underpass link from new homes to shops, buses and amenities

Just £40,000 was allocated from the 333-home development A small fraction of the overall income.

When asked by TfL to invest, Greenwich responded by stating they were investing yet in completely the opposite direction to an existing segregated cycle lane, shops, buses and railway station.

TfL state measures needed to improve links to station. Greenwich response ignores links to cycle lane, shops, buses and rail

If you know the area, what Greenwich suggest makes little sense.


Last year Greenwich were bottom in London for collecting Community Infrastructure Levy income and regularly refuse to allocate Section 106 income towards streets changes to benefit pedestrians, cyclists, rail and other public transport users.

Greenwich bottom for CIL revenue (Havering didn’t have full year’s income)

They set a low rates in 2015 way below what an independent viability report stated was possible, then failed to revise in 2018 as promised.

If they had revised, the Woolwich crossrail tab would almost certainly have been paid off some time ago with many millions available for various services and improvements above and beyond what is seen.

Woolwich Exchange is another plot where developers benefitted from low rates. No cycle lane planned on wide paving outside

If anything, their own developments also go out the way to make future changes for cycling provision more difficult. Last year they approved a major estate rebuild in Woolwich beside the forthcoming cycle route.

They refused to contribute to Network Rail’s request on constructing a new, accessible bridge over the railway line thus leaving this as the main link from hundreds of homes to bus routes and the forthcoming cycle lane:

How thousands of new residents will be expected to reach buses and new cycle lane

The estate’s new design beside the existing A206 also limits space to ensure a dedicated bus lane, cycle lane and wide paving for pedestrians:

New estate, blank slate and limited space for all street users due to excessive green buffer

What could help is when Community Infrastructure Levy rates are finally revised, as expected by late 2023 when the council’s Crossrail bill should also be paid off.

That should then ensure substantially more money for various projects – though there is the dangers that a recession will press the brakes on much development post-2022.

Wide paving means space for cycle lane. Opportunity not taken at recently approved Woolwich Exchange

That ensures they’ve missed the boat on additional income from huge numbers of developments approved in recent months and years, with developers avoiding revised fees and costing the authority and residents sizable sums.

So we come back to that all important phrase from TfL in their press release: “subject to funding”.

If Greenwich continue to refuse in supporting projects via hard cash while proclaiming support in words, it may take some time to begin.


Adverts are far from enough to cover site costs and my rent.

You can support me via Paypal here

Another option is via Patreon by clicking here

You can also buy me a beer/coffee at Ko-fi here

There's also a Facebook page for the site here

Many thanks

J Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

7 thoughts on “Notorious Greenwich roundabout to stay as TfL seek to extend cycle lane to Woolwich

  • Their progress towards net zero needs to be monitored and declared at regular intervals and then taken to account if they are not progressing fast enough and fall behind, by compulsory spending added. (Is it just me or is this comment box not displaying text properly?) Surely there are Govt guidelines which ensure all new developments allow space for bus lanes/road traffic/segregated cycle two lanes and sufficient pavement space. If it means the developer reduces footprint, tough!
    I Don’t agree that the green ‘buffer’ is excessive though, as long as its kept clear of litter etc (unlikely when u compare places like the drive-thru McDonald surroundings at Bugsby Way)

    • The green buffer appears to mean space for either a cycle lane or bus lane instead of both. I guess buses will end up sharing with cars.

      Probably ok now, but in 20+ years time when 8,000 homes built nearby that could be seen as a great mistake.

  • TFL are missing an opportunity to redesign this busy and dangerous junction to encourage more cycling along the extension of the cycle lane to Woolwich. If feel TFL do not really care about the area. Traffic is already heavily congested and will only get worse with thousands of new homes nearing completion and thousands of more new homes in the planning.
    I think we need a new Mayor For London and a new Management Team at TFL only then may we see the improvements that are needed. Safety as to be paramount at all times.

  • underpass is the only and well overdue option

  • I agree time for a new Mayor Of London. We will see even more traffic than originally expected when the Silvertown Tunnel opens. The amount of buses to serve the new Silvertown Tunnel severely cut with most areas of the Borough of Greenwich having no bus service through the Silvertown Tunnel.
    The new planned X239 from Grove Park to Leamouth Roundabout will only serve a small section of the London Borough of Lewisham with many areas having no new service through the tunnel to improve cross river bus routes and ease traffic congestion and high level of air pollution.

  • P s. This will have a major affect on cyclist and pedestrians at a time the Mayor of London wants to see more active travel and increase usage of public transport across London.

  • @ CDT Truer words have never been said. Traffic will be an absolute nightmare in the area. This is already very dangerous junction. As Nandanyomous says an underpass may be the answer if well lit and covered by CCTV for additional safety.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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