Latest look at Greenwich to London Bridge cycleway lane

Work on the very last stretch of dedicate cycle lanes to be built as part of Cycleway 4 is currently underway on the Lower Road in Rotherhithe after many years of construction.

Upon completion a dedicated route will run from Greenwich to Tower Bridge.

Cycle lane past leisure centre in Rotherhithe

The missing link for some time now has been the one-way system in Rotherhithe and working out what to do with it.

The road layout may still change in future but for now a cycle lane is being installed to plug the gap and permit a continuous, segregated route.

Work underway at one-way system

Areas to the west have been complete for three years. To the east since 2020-2022. But this bit remained untouched.

Future demand

The route currently being worked upon is lined with a number of substantial developments which should ensure usage is high in years to come.

One such site that can’t be missed is major works at Rotherhithe near Canada Water station where a tower is being built alongside lower blocks.

New tower sits close to dedicated cycle lane to central London

There’s much more to come in this area with the entire shopping centre and adjacent car park set for redevelopment.

British Land have approval for 3,000 homes in total alongside new shops.

Surrey Quays will see thousands of new homes within red outline

Another major site nearby beside the cycleway is Deptford Landings, with the most recent phase approaching completion.

There’s a lot more to come there too. Revisions were recently approved for the site.

Deptford Landings. Cycleway 4 runs on right of image where Victorian housing seen

Upon completion it will see 1,132 homes.

Demand for cycling in the area already appears strong if recent trips past are any guide. At points like this keeping the lane fenced off simply causes more danger as vehicles and cycles are wedged together –

We saw similar in Deptford and Greenwich for many, many months. Work was pretty much complete but TfL kept the lane closed ensuring cyclists were dicing with buses and cars for far longer than need be.

Eventually they relented and opened it up while work on the bridge over Deptford Creek was scheduled for months in advance.

TfL fenced off complete sections for many months increasing dangers at previous stage

While the lane officially ends in Greenwich it is now possible to continue east to Charlton.

Start of Cycleway 4 proper near Deptford Creek. Usage seems decent when passing

There’s plenty more new homes coming in this area of Greenwich too which should only increase the appeal of the cycleway.

Recently revised plans for a student tower was recently submitted directly beside the lane.

Student tower proposal in Greenwich

Work on Saxon Wharf a short distance away is also due to start soon. It sits on Norman Road and would be a minute or two’s cycle ride to access.

Saxon Wharf in Greenwich

A few hundreds metres away is Convoys Wharf and you never know, developer Hutchison Property Group may actually build something one day after sitting on land for a decade.

Lest we forget that Boris Johnson called the planning decision in eight years ago as the developer claimed an urgent decision was needed to get building. They got the decision, then did nothing.

Courtesy Google. Vast Convoys Wharf site

When they finally do build, the site should see 3,500 homes in total.

It’s not hard to imagine a fair few other sites in the general vicinity of the lane seeing residents give it a go when a safe route is finally established. That includes 200+ homes at the Tidemill development.

Tidemill site taken from passing DLR

It’s long been mooted that an eastern extension could run to Woolwich ferry (or beyond to Plumstead).

Despite plentiful housing being built between Charlton and Woolwich and then Plumstead, there appears little progress on that idea.

Wide roads beside new development now rising in Woolwich. one of thousands of homes along potential route

A shame really as given the sheer scale of housing both underway and planned it’d be well used, and the roads are certainly wide enough to accommodate lanes in most of the stretch with no loss of bus/vehicle lanes.

Still, I’d be amazed if nothing if built in the next decade.




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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.

10 thoughts on “Latest look at Greenwich to London Bridge cycleway lane

  • This is urgently needed, since the bike path around the Millwall stadium became a mugging hotspot
    there haven’t been many safe alternatives.

  • First they give us bus lanes which are great as public transport was always fantastic. Then they take away the bus lanes build a ridiculous bike lane that no cyclists use and now the roads are grid locked and most times at a stand still. Ridiculous you might aswell make it illegal to drive in the city.

    • Clearly people use them. The photos show it.

      Removing bus lanes is problematic true and I’ve covered that before. As for cars, London needs to reduce usage. A city of 9 million using narrow streets generally can’t and shouldn’t put the car above cyclists and buses

  • But what they are doing doesn’t address the issue you are raising of reducing car usage. It’s a separate point.

    LTNs and similar have shown you don’t reduce car usage or ownership by reducing road capacity because people have what they consider to be essential journeys and will continue to make them. This really needs to be better understood. If you want to reduce car usage you don’t tinker with closing lanes/LTNs/etc., you instead make it FAR more difficult/expensive to own a car in Inner London – remove residents’ permits or substantially hike prices for them, restrict non-EVs, restrict ownership of private vehicles for those in Zones 1-2/3 for those that do not use them for trade. Needless to say that would be deeply unpopular, mostly because the average LTN street denizen actually likes their SUV an doesn’t want to put their pram on a bus or, dare I say, a cargo bike.

    So what they have done is given over what little road capacity there was to a cycle lane, whilst buses that previously skipped this traffic via the bus lanes (which cyclists could also use…) are now stuck in the more congested sole lane.

    This isn’t a step in the right direction it’s just a lack of foresight and it’s prevalent across all of London unfortunately. Whilst you trumpet cycle lanes and the like you damn those that rely on a bus to longer journey times.

  • I totally agree that anything to make cycling safer and therefore encouraging it s good. However I do sympathise with the frustration of bus users. The main problem is the private car use.
    For the record I have a car but I only use it to get out of London. Far too many people use their cars unnecessarily. I realise they have a place for people who need them but even then nobody needs a 4×4 or a supercar in a polluted, heavily congested city.

  • I recently returned to cycling after a gap of a few years and in June I started cycling into the city from Woolwich a couple of times a week. I have to say I wouldn’t do so without the cycle lanes and looking forward to the new stretch being finished. Now if Greenwich would sort out the route from West Thamesmead to Charlton that would be great. The cycle path along the Thames is in poor condition in places with pot holes or tree roots making it a bumpy ride.

  • The only certain thing is that TFL has not got it right. They are pitching the facility to cycle in direct opposition to the facility to drive (or take a bus). The biggest barrier to new people taking up cycling is the proximity to traffic so the most intelligent approach would have been to route the cycle ways away from the main roads not smack bang in the middle of existing congestion, existing bus routes and existing pavements / walkways. But, hey ho, it’s TFL isn’t it.

  • Has anyone ever commented on why they keep those lanes closed for so long even if they appear to be finished?

    This connection is great and the useage even w/o the bike lane open is already high (I use it often).

    Closing lanes for cars will of course decrease car useage especially if it is causing traffic – perception of mandatory drives will change if it takes 1h to go 5 miles and if there are safe, cheap and fast alternatives.

  • It’s great that bike lanes are being built on the main roads but cars still get priority most of the time at junctions so they are hardly superhighways or the motorways of cycling. Would be good to see the next iteration to prioritise bikes over other traffic so it’s always more direct and faster to cycle. That way essential car journeys are only done because they are essential, not because they are quicker, easier or more convenient.

  • That’s not really true. For people to replace car journeys with active travel they need routes that are direct, continuous and efficient. For commuting in particular, a segregated route alongside the existing straight rights of way is perfect. Research backs this up as a major carrot incentive for encouraging modal shift


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