WestEndExtra

The independent London newspaper

We still want a traffic-free Oxford Street

16 November, 2018

• CAN I yet again reassure Ethan Pod (Street needs a makeover, November 2) and all those who have not yet accepted that both local and national government have now changed and adopted a new transport policy that any reduction in vehicle travel in Westminster will only have a marginal impact on existing neighbourhoods.

The original Oxford Street traffic modelling proved the point. In any case the West End has been a giant “rat-run” now for traffic for decades so surely we all should take the opportunity to use Westminster Council’s new proposals to finally rid ourselves of the nightmare of so much traffic.

Most of us do not own or use our cars in the West End. The vast majority of us use public transport or walk or cycle to get around. So transport policy is now designed to accommodate us and not the very few who still demand to drive everywhere and cause so much environmental damage.

The abandonment of pedestrianising Oxford Street was regrettable simply because it has not solved the issue of citizens being regularly killed or seriously injured in the street or the appalling air pollution that we all had to suffer.

While Living Streets recognises the political issues involved and are happy to work with everyone for a better West End, we will still promote the removal of traffic from Oxford Street as the ultimate objective in the most important shopping street in the UK.

PETER HARTLEY
Chair, Westminster Living Streets

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