Liveable Streets Generic FAQs

    What are the benefits of the programme?

      • A network of pedestrian-friendly, low traffic zones connected by formal crossing points, to make walking safer, easier and more accessible.
      • A more pleasant walking environment with improved pavements, planting trees and shrubs, improved lighting and public art, to improve the attractiveness of walking routes and reduce fear of crime.
      • A network of cycle-friendly, low traffic zones connected by formal crossing points, to make cycling safer, easier and more accessible.
      • Increase in cycle facilities, such as secure parking at public transport hubs and shopping areas, hangars in residential streets
      • Improved public realm in retail areas to attract visitors, such as greenery, street furniture, street lighting etc.
      • Provide new public seating, green spaces and tree planting to create a healthier environment.
      • Encouraging customers to spend more time, feeling safe and comfortable.
      • Wider pedestrian routes, allowing easier movement for shoppers of all ages and abilities.
      • Improved local streetscape with reduced noise and road danger.
      • Residents will be able to access better connected routes to the borough’s town centres and to neighbouring boroughs.
      • More opportunities to allow school streets, play streets and areas for community events.
      • Schemes will remove potential risks by calming traffic and providing quiet and/or segregated routes for active travel 
      • An increase in cycling and walking among residents will reduce demand on the local road network and public transport services, particularly at peak times.
      • Less traffic will reduce toxic emissions, improve air quality and road safety, and reduce noise pollution – creating a more pleasant environment for all.
      • Increase opportunities for physical activity.
      • More pleasant public spaces will make the borough more attractive to residents and visitors.


    How will you increase the number of people choosing to walk or cycle? How will this be achieved?

    Providing safer, better-connected routes throughout the borough will enable people of all abilities and ages to walk and cycle. This will also be supported by promoting free cycle training and other relevant complementary measures.

    This will be done through a variety of on-street infrastructure projects across the borough, such as changes to road layouts to give priority to walking, cycling and public transport. These projects will be supported by complementary measures to promote active travel.

    What is an active travel complementary measure?

    Complementary measures aim to reduce barriers to walking and cycling within the community. Barriers include lack of secure cycle storage in residential areas and public transport interchanges; safety fears about cycling; access to a bicycle; and maintenance of bicycles.

    Complementary measures such as walking tours, historic walks, free cycle training, free access to Dr Bike (cycle mechanic) at council events, the installation of cycle hangars and hubs will help mitigate against these barriers. This will increase the number of users choosing sustainable modes of transport.

    What areas does the programme cover?

    Seventeen areas were chosen, covering approximately 60 per cent of the borough. These areas have been split into four phases of work across the next four years. The map below shows the project areas and phases. 


    How were the areas selected?

    The rationale for selecting these areas is:

    • Phase one: Substantial work on traffic management reviews has already been carried out in these areas. Following public consultation several schemes have since been built. The public consultation generated many more suggestions for further public realm improvements and provides a strong basis for exploring further changes in these areas.
    • Phase two: These areas tie in with the council’s strategic plans developed by the town centres team, as well as other traffic management reviews that are due to be implemented around the same time.
    • Phase three: Three of these areas are planned to tie in with known Transport for London (TfL) proposals for complementary measures, including cycle routes. New areas have been added to extend the geographical scope of the works into areas where there are known complaints and wider issues that need to be addressed.
    • Phase four: The areas in this phase seek to tie in with development masterplanning due for construction around this time.

    When does each phase of the programme start and finish?

    Details of the overall programme, including the dates for each phase and area, can be found on the Council’s website with links to each project area.

    What kind of improvements might be implemented?

    Improvement projects will vary in each area but are likely to include some of the following:

    • Widened footways
    • Planting trees and shrubs
    • Modal filters (features, such as bollards or signs, used to limit access to streets, to certain methods of transport) / road closures
    • Parklets / pocket parks (parks created on small plots of land, that are accessible to the general public)
    • School Streets
    • Facilitate requests for play streets from residents and community groups

    How can residents and businesses be involved in the design of their local area?

    Throughout the programme, there are several stages when residents and businesses can provide feedback on improvements they would like in their area. These stages are:

    • Early engagement – residents and businesses make comments and suggestions on an interactive map of the area
    • Workshops – Residents and businesses can provide feedback to influence the design of their area
    • Consultation – We request feedback on the proposed design that has been developed in conjunction with residents and businesses.
    • Implementation – If the projects are approved by the council, the design will be constructed over an agreed timescale.

    Where can I submit my ideas?

    For each project area, you can submit your ideas and views through an online survey. We will also be holding events throughout the programme where you can come and talk to us. More information on these events will be provided online as they develop.

    Will I be notified when the engagement starts in my area?

    Each area-based scheme will begin with an early engagement survey. A leaflet will be delivered to each household and business within the area, giving details on how to feed into this survey.

    Schemes will also be promoted through the council’s social media, website and regular newsletters. You can subscribe for newsletter updates on each area via the council’s website.

    Will there be more cycle facilities as part of the Liveable Streets programme?

    Yes, the programme aims to improve the cycle network around Tower Hamlets, increase connectivity in residential areas and provide facilities suitable for users of all ages and abilities.

    Cycle Future Route 5

    TfL is proposing to introduce a new cycle route between Hackney and Westferry. It would connect with the cycle routes between Stratford and Aldgate and Barking to Tower. Parts of this route are proposed through or alongside some Liveable Street areas, and it is expected that TfL will release further information for consultation on the route designs in the coming months.

    What is a School Street?

    A School Street is a scheme where traffic is moved away from the school gate to reduce the impact of vehicle emissions on children’s health and improve road safety. They may involve closing a road to traffic either permanently or at school opening and closing times, or introducing traffic management to discourage idling at the school entrance and reduce congestion.

    By moving traffic away from the school gate we will deliver a safer, more pleasant environment for everyone using the street. At the same time we will maintain access for residents, businesses, pedestrians and cyclists and encourage trips to and from school to be made by sustainable modes. For details of proposed schemes, visit http://www.towerhamlets.gov.uk/schoolstreets.

    How can my school apply for a School Street?

    Twenty schools have already been prioritised for action, according to air quality statistics, Parking Action areas, the status of their school travel plans etc. In addition, other schools in the Liveable Streets project areas will be reviewed to potentially benefit from a School Street scheme. Speak to school staff regarding the individual School Travel Plan and participation in Transport for London’s STARS accreditation scheme.

    Will buses be impacted by these projects?

    Any works which may affect the bus routes will have to be agreed with Transport for London (TfL). Changes to any routes, bus stops or times can be found on the council and TfL website. We may implement measures to improve bus reliability and we will aim to not affect access to bus services or their reliability.

    Will parking and loading be affected?

    In some areas we may propose to reduce or reorganise car parking to allow the installation of additional cycle parking, new public spaces and infrastructure. Where parking reductions do occur, specific facilities (loading and disabled bays) will be installed to enable loading activity and improve accessibility for disabled users, to ensure businesses can be serviced and easily reached by all customers.

    How will these projects impact emergency services?

    When the council makes any changes to road layouts, the emergency services are included as statutory consultees. This means that the council must consult with them and if they raise objections about the proposals, the council must reconsider the plans.

    Regular meetings will be held with the emergency services to allow them to inform us of any issues that are occurring in the new road layout. This will allow the council to mitigate against these issues promptly.

    Where can I find the air quality levels for my area?

    London Borough of Tower Hamlets operate four real-time air quality monitoring stations in the borough. These are located at Mile End, Victoria Park, Millwall Park and Blackwall Tunnel Approach. The Blackwall Tunnel approach monitoring station is managed by TfL for the council. 

    They measure pollutants in real time which means that the pollution levels are constantly being measured and the results recorded. Results of real time monitoring can be found on the Air Quality England website. In addition to the real-time stations, the council monitors nitrogen dioxide emissions at 90 other locations. For more details, visit the council’s website.

    Further questions

    If you have any further questions about the programme, please feel free to contact us at: liveablestreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk.

    How will these projects impact other housing estate providers and land owners in the area?

    One of the programme aims is to reduce the overall amount of through-traffic, make it safer and more convenient to get around by foot and bike. As part of the project, it is important that we assess the benefits and impacts to the area as a whole and will work with Tower Hamlets Homes and other housing providers where necessary. Discussions with these groups are on-going throughout the project.

Brick Lane proposals FAQ

    Why is the investing in Brick Lane Consultation happening now?

    The Council is committed to supporting Brick Lane’s recovery from the COVID-19 - 19 pandemic and wants to use the investment of the Liveable Streets programme to support Brick Lane businesses and the local community in months and years ahead. 

    Our proposals have been developed on feedback based on residents, businesses, and local community. 

    We are consulting on these proposals now, so that if they are supported, we can implement them in time for Summer to benefit businesses, the local community, and visitors. 

    What has happened so far?

    The Brick Lane project is part of our Liveable Streets programme that started in 2019. So far, we have: 

    • Early Engagement: 24 June - 31 August 2019 

    An online survey, interactive map and drop-in sessions were delivered and almost 400 comments and ideas were received and around 50% of these responses came from residents within the Brick Lane area.

    • Co-design Workshops: 25 January - 5 February 2020

     Co-design workshops took place with residents, businesses and community groups on concept designs and understand specific issues, such as business access and deliveries. 

    •  Streetspace for London scheme (Brick Lane) - 17 August - 5 November 2020

     The Streetspace for London scheme was trialled during Summer 2020 as a response to Covid-19 pandemic to enable social distancing and safety with temporary road closures in Brick Lane. Though this scheme was not part of our Liveable Streets programme, we ran a survey from Wednesday 4 November 2020 to Monday 30 November 2020 to seek feedback on the trial scheme to help shape the Liveable Streets proposals. 

    • Public Consultation (Current stage): 17 March - 14 April 2021

    Our current proposals have been developed based on feedback from residents, businesses, and local community during previous phases and additional engagement took place with key stakeholders pre consultation to understand impacts e.g. access and delivery.

    What is being proposed?

    Three schemes have been developed to improve walking and cycling, create better public spaces, discourage through-traffic, improve air quality and support in the economic recovery of businesses within Brick Lane:

    Scheme 1: Enhancing the Neighbourhood

    Scheme 2: Brick Lane

    Scheme 3: School Streets

    Our proposals include environmental enhancements and traffic calming measures to improve accessibility and safety for all and to encourage active travel.

    Our proposals: 

    • Pedestrianising sections of Brick Lane in the evenings and the weekends (Brick Lane will be open to all traffic before 5.30pm on weekdays) to support businesses to trade safely and make use of outside dining space.
    •  Improving the accessibility of Brick Lane with dropped kerbs and new disabled parking spaces.
    •  Enhancing the neighbourhood with improved lighting, planting and traffic calming measures to create a better and safer environment for the local community and visitors to walk and cycle around Brick Lane.
    • Implement school streets to create accessible and safer school travel routes to improve air quality and road safety at the following locations: 
      • Buxton Street, between Deal Street and Vallance Road 
      • Deal Street, between Woodseer Street and Buxton Street 
      • Underwood Road 
      • Hunton Street
    • Safe and secure cycle hangars on Old Montague Street, Chicksand Street, Fashion Street, Hanbury Street and Woodseer Street to encourage sustainable travel.
    • New cycle stands on Osborn Street, Old Montague Street, Brick Lane, and Buxton Street to encourage sustainable travel.

    Why are these proposals important?

    Brick Lane is an iconic area of London which attracts over 18,500 pedestrians every day. This space is also shared with over 4,000 vehicles, many of which use Brick Lane to cut through the area. This means they are not visiting local businesses, schools or places of worship but are significant contributors to the already unacceptable levels of air pollution and congestion along Brick Lane.

    School streets are central to our Brick Lane proposals to address key safety and air quality issues. Our initiatives will create accessible and safer school travel routes by reducing the number of cars polluting the school environment and improving road safety for children.

    These proposals are a key part of Tower Hamlets commitment to support Brick Lane’s economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic and aims to attract more visitors to the area and support businesses to trade safely. 

    How can I have my say on proposals?

    Your views are important to us. We want everyone who lives, works, studies and visits in the Brick Lane area to have their say on the proposals. 

    Have your say by filling out the survey: 

    Please provide your feedback by 11:59pm on Wednesday 14 April 2021. 

    There  is an opportunity to chat with the Liveable Streets Team by booking a one-to-one meeting. All details can be found on the above webpage in the section “Chat to the Team”.

    If you require information in another format or have any further questions, email, phone or write to us at: 

    LiveableStreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk 

    0203 092 0401 (weekdays, 9am-5pm) 

    Liveable Streets

    6th Floor Mulberry Place

    PO Box 55739

    5 Clove Crescent

    London E14 2BG

    What happens after the public consultation?

    It is very important that the investing in Brick Lane proposals are supported by the community, and that we hear from those who live, work, study and visit Brick Lane. 

    The result of the public consultation will be analysed and if there is support for all or some elements the design will be further developed based on feedback. This will then the design will be developed.

    Can I request an accessible format or translated copy?

    Email us at LiveableStreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk or call 020 3092 0401 (9am to 5pm on weekdays) to request an accessible format, translated copy of the consultation booklet and survey, or require further assistance.

    What is the difference between the Liveable Streets Brick Lane proposals and the Streetspace for London scheme?

    The Streetspace for London scheme was trialled during Summer 2020 as a response to Covid-19 pandemic to enable social distancing and safety with temporary road closures in Brick Lane. Though this scheme was not part of our Liveable Streets programme, we ran a survey from Wednesday 4 November 2020 to Monday 30 November 2020 to seek feedback on the trial scheme to help shape the Liveable Streets proposals. 

     Our current traffic management proposals are very different from the Streetspace for London scheme that was trialled in Summer 2020, see below: 

    • During the trial there were 24/7 closures – we are proposing timed closures (5.30pm- 11pm weekdays and 11am-11pm weekends) during peak visiting times.
    • During the trial Closures blocked with planters to restrict all vehicle access -we are proposing timed closures will be monitored by Automated Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras and will allow 24/7 access for emergency services. 

    What improvements are there for me as a business owner?

    • Improved public realm in retail areas to attract visitors.
    • Increase in footfall in retail areas, creating a boost for local businesses in our town centres.
    • Provide new public seating, green spaces and tree planting to create a healthier environment.
    • Encouraging customers to spend more time, feeling safe and comfortable.
    • Pedestrian routes have been improved through wider pavements and appropriate dropped kerbs, allowing easier movement for shoppers.

    Will my customers be impacted?

    Retail is a crucial element of a thriving high street and in line with the Liveable Streets objectives. The programme in Brick Lane is focused on measures to improve the area for businesses and their customers and residents alike - by reducing vehicle volumes and creating optimal conditions for walking and cycling. 

    We believe, by transforming car-oriented streets into more functional public and pedestrian spaces, means there is the potential to create environments that support walking and cycling and economic development.

    Shared and public spaces are vital components of high streets. These spaces are what build community, and are often under-used, becoming simple thoroughfares. Studies increasingly show customer behaviour, shopping habits and social attitudes have changed. To remain relevant and as important to communities and businesses as they have been in the past, the centres of our towns and cities and our high streets have to change with them. In 2020, there is less reason to chase the traditional model of the high street - a place where people come together to shop. Now more than ever with the impact of COVID-19, we need to re-imagine the high street and drive towards a new future where people come together for many different reasons. 

    Creative thinking, in line with the current design proposals for Brick Lane, is needed so these spaces can become the focal point for the social interaction that is the heart of the high street experience – an area that is enjoyed by all members of the local community. Pedestrianisation is arguably one method of improving public spaces and high streets. Positive results have been found in recent years in locations such as Walthamstow Central.

    How will the scheme provide economic recovery to the local area?

    As well as helping to improve road safety, public spaces, and air quality, our Liveable Streets scheme will also provide the space for restaurant businesses on Brick Lane to apply for a Tables and Chairs license to provide an outside socially distanced dining experience for customers.

Scheme 1: Enhancing the neighbourhood

    What planting will be installed within the scheme?

    If the scheme is supported by the community and approved for delivery, the detailed design stage will look at what specific planting species should be installed. There will be a number of factors that will be considered, including maintenance, the local surrounds, flowering, the site, and key stakeholders that may need to be engaged.

    What is a parklet?

    A parklet is a small seating area with green space and planting on the pavement. Two new parklets are proposed in the scheme to provide additional space for the local community and visitors to enjoy Brick Lane safely.

    How will the proposals improve accessibility?

    The investing in Brick Lane project aims to improve accessibility to Brick Lane either by bike or foot.   The proposals include: 

    • Relocating motorcycle parking on Brick Lane, at the south of Buxton Street, to enable pavement width for a pushchair or wheelchair.
    • Adding dropped kerbs to create safer crossings within the area.
    • At each timed closure point junction, surface treatment is proposed. This will be a coloured surface in contrast with the road surface, so drivers are aware they are crossing/entering the timed section.
    • Creating new disabled parking spaces on the Chicksand Street, Fashion Street and Fournier Street.
    • Upgrade street lighting on Buxton Street, Underwood Road and Code Street to create a safer walking and cycling route. 

    Will there be a loss of parking spaces in Brick Lane?

    There will be no overall parking loss from our proposals as parking spaces will be relocated to the surrounding roads. Details of the parking relocation will be found on the online parking map (talk.towerhamlets.gov.uk/LSBrickLane). 

    What is the benefit of the Southbound one-way section along Deal Street between Underwood Road and Woodseer Street?

    Traffic counts show that many residential roads experience high levels of motor vehicle traffic every day. Residential streets like Deal Street currently have more than 4,100 vehicles using them every day. A high percentage of these are non-residents cutting through your area leading to noise, air pollution and road safety issues. Our proposals aim to reduce cut through traffic and vehicle movement at the junction of Deal Street and Hanbury Street to improve air quality and road safety.

    What cycle improvements are you proposing in Brick Lane?

    To help encourage more local residents to cycle we are proposing a number of improvements: 

    Safe and secure cycle hangars on Old Montague Street, Chicksand Street, Fashion Street, Hanbury Street and Woodseer Street.

    New cycle stands on Osborn Street, Old Montague Street, Brick Lane, and Buxton Street.

     

    To register your interest in a cycle hangar or receive more information, please tick the box in the survey or email LiveableStreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk

Scheme 2: Brick Lane

    What does a timed road closure mean?

    A timed road closure means ‘the road is closed to motor vehicles’ during certain times, this includes all cars, vans, motorcycles, and lorries etc. The road will be open to pedestrians, cyclists, and emergency services at all times.

    Why are the timed closures proposed for 5.30pm- 11pm weekdays and 11am-11pm weekends?

    The proposed times of the closures are based on feedback from the community, businesses, and visitors during previous engagement. We want to provide a safer environment for pedestrians during evenings and weekends during Brick Lanes peak visiting times, and still ensure businesses can continue to receive deliveries and collections during the day on weekdays.

    Can cyclists still travel through the timed road closures?

    Yes, cyclists can still travel through the proposed timed closures, alongside pedestrians.

    How will timed restrictions be enforced?

    The timed closures will be monitored by Automated Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras, which will restrict vehicle movements but still allow access for emergency services during hours of operation.

    How will these projects impact emergency services?

    The emergency services are key stakeholders. The ambulance services, police and fire brigade have been consulted early in the engagement process to ensure their access needs are not impacted. Our proposals will allow 24/7 access for emergency services. 

    We will continue to work closely with the emergency services to make Brick Lane an even safer place to live, work, study, and visit.  

    Will I still be able to access my property if I have a car?

    All proposed timed closures are sections of less than 50m in length, this means that residents will be able to pick-up/drop off passengers within close proximity to the closures. 

    All areas are accessible by vehicle outside the proposed timed closures (5.30pm- 11pm weekdays and 11am-11pm weekends).

    Can I park my vehicle in Brick Lane?

    Parking within the timed closure points will not be permitted during the hours of operation

    (5.30pm- 11pm weekdays and 11am-11pm weekends). Details of the parking relocation will be found on the online parking map (talk.towerhamlets.gov.uk/LSBrickLane).

    Will the whole of Brick Lane be operating timed restrictions?

    No, we are proposing some sections of Brick Lane stay open at all times for access requirements. These are: 

    • Between Wentworth Street and Chicksand Street to ensure access for Spitalfields Health Centre and residential car park. 
    • Between Fashion Street and Fournier Street to enable access to Heneage Street and Seven Stars Yard. 
    • Between Woodseer Street and Buxton Street for deliveries and access to the public car park. 

    Will I still be able to receive deliveries to my business?

    There will be no changes to the loading and business bays on the side streets next to Brick Lane. Businesses access to load and receive deliveries on these streets will remain during the timed closures hours of operation (5.30pm- 11pm weekdays and 11am-11pm weekends).

    Will the proposed timed closures be permanent?

    Following the analysis of the consultation results, if the scheme is supported by the community and approved at Cabinet, the Liveable Streets scheme within Brick Lane will be implemented on an Experimental Traffic Order (ETO) which has a duration of 18 months. During this time Tower Hamlets will review the project, make changes, remove, or make the scheme permanent after the scheme has been implemented.

Scheme 3: School Streets

    What is a school street?

    A School Street is a Street outside a school with a permanent or temporary restriction on motor vehicles during mornings and afternoons on school days to allow children, parents, and staff to arrive and leave the schools in a safe and healthy environment whilst encouraging more active travel.

    Why do we need School Streets?

    School streets aim to: 

    To improve road safety - Unfortunately, children are some of the most vulnerable road users. As part of the School Street, we look at the design of the roads and pavements to make it as safe as possible for children on the way to and from school. 

    To protect children from pollution - Harmful air pollution affects the health and well-being of children. Children’s lung capacity can be reduced by breathing toxic air which can affect all organs in their body and their long-term health. Find out more at www.towerhamlets. gov.uk/breatheclean 

    To encourage active travel - Busy roads can make it feel unsafe to walk and cycle. We can widen pavements, introduce crossings, and calm traffic to allow more children to safely walk, scoot and cycle. Where possible, schools can provide space for storing bikes and scooters safely. Find out more at www.towerhamlets. gov.uk/cycling

    Where are school streets proposed?

    School Streets are being proposed at the following locations: 

    • Buxton Street, between Deal Street and Vallance Road 
    • Deal Street, between Woodseer Street and Buxton Street 
    • Underwood Road 
    • Hunton Street 

    How are school streets enforced?

    The School Street will be enforced by Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras and vehicles entering not exempt, will automatically be issued a penalty charge notice.

    Who is exempt from a school street?

    Access for residents & businesses of those streets, school staff, blue badge users and Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) children will be allowed if the vehicle is registered for an exemption. This can be requested free of charge by complementing the online form online, please visit: www.towerhamlets.gov.uk/schoolstreets 

    All other vehicles not registered for exemption will not be permitted to enter the School Street during operational hours between 8.15am-9.15am and 3pm-4pm on school days. 

    All vehicles parked within the School Streets will be permitted to leave the area at all times. 

    What are school street initiatives and how can I get involved?

    School initiatives create a more attractive environment for children on their way to and from school. 

    We are proposing: 

    • Planters outside Osmani Primary School on Vallance Road. 
    • Planters and community area outside Thomas Buxton Primary School on Selby Street. This will require the loss of an existing loading bay and solo motorcycles bay. 

    If the proposals are approved, school workshops will be arranged. The design will be developed through workshops to create a design that understands children’s journeys to and from school, air quality impact, health, and well-being improvements. 

    If you would like further information on Tower Hamlets School Streets initiatives, please visit: www. towerhamlets.gov.uk/schoolstreets

Investment in the area

    What are Liveable Streets programme complementary measures?

    As part of the Liveable Streets programme the council is developing a number of complementary measures and monitoring. 

    These activities and events will include the following: 

    • Cycle training and maintenance classes 
    • Cargo bike use for businesses 
    • School and workplace travel initiatives 
    • Play Streets 
    • Air quality monitoring 
    • Residential cycle hangars 
    • Electric vehicle charge points 

     If you are interested in play streets, cycle training or cycle hangars, please email us at liveablestreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk

    What other projects are happening in Brick Lane?

    The Council is developing other exciting proposals for further investment in Brick Lane. We have already consulted on a range of improvements and we hope to implement these projects alongside the Liveable Streets proposals, this will be an historic level of investment in Brick Lane.

    This includes: 

    • Allen Gardens
    • Brick Lane public realm


Coronavirus Related Information

    Why is the council consulting during the Coronavirus pandemic?

    We are passionate about maintaining an ongoing and robust engagement programme at this time to move forward with the programme and to ensure the public is aware and fully informed of the Liveable Streets objectives. The programme has simultaneous benefits for the health of our residents and the sustainability of the borough in the face of both the Coronavirus pandemic and the climate emergency.

    The government has contributed a £250million emergency walking and cycling fund for local authorities to make these alternatives viable. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and Transport for London have also announced plans to transform parts of central London into one of the largest car-free zones in any capital city in the world.

    Why is the Liveable Streets programme important right now?

    The Liveable Streets programme is crucial to the health and wellbeing of Tower Hamlets residents now more than ever. We want to contribute to minimising the cycle of car use, exposure to air pollution and the subsequent increased risk of coronavirus. By continuing to live in air polluted areas, our residents remain vulnerable to poor health generally and especially now during the current pandemic.

    Social distancing may last for years, and public transport capacity is predicted to drop by 85-90% to curb the spread of the virus through social distancing. In response, people may opt to use private motor vehicles. As the fastest growing population in London, this would be an inefficient use of limited road space and oversubscribed car parking facilities.

    What is Streetspace?

    In line with the coronavirus response and the easing of some movement restrictions, we have seen an increase in people walking and cycling in some streets in Tower Hamlets. Crowded pavements and cycle lanes will make it difficult for people to maintain social distancing as they return to work or education. Public transport must only be used when necessary to ensure that people making essential journeys can get around as safely as possible.

    The council are working with Transport for London to identify places where temporary changes are needed to support social distancing or that would benefit from cycling and walking improvements. The changes could include but are not limited to the widening of pavements, a change to the road layout or the introduction of dedicated cycling space. For more details, visit the Streetspace for Tower Hamlets page.

    Is it okay to deliver a leaflet to my house during Coronavirus?

    We believe it is crucial, along with all Post Office and Parcelforce deliveries, that our Liveable Streets engagement material continues to be distributed to the people living within the project boundaries. Our leaflet distributors actively monitor the latest guidance from Public Health England, and we are confident in their compliance with safety measures and legislations. We were also reassured to learn Public Health England have advised there is no perceived increase in risk of contracting the coronavirus from handling post or freight.

    As postal and freight sectors are permitted to operate during the lockdown under the governments key workers stipulations, we take our responsibilities very seriously during this time. From their experience with other coronaviruses, these types of viruses do not survive long on objects, such as letters, parcels or identity documents. However, it is sensible to wash your hands thoroughly after contact with anything outside of your home and to avoid touching your face.

    With regards to the handling, printing and preparation of the materials delivered on behalf of the Liveable Streets programme, face shields with adjustable foam headbands are worn at the print and fulfilment facility, in tandem with social distancing measures on site. Latex gloves are worn while on the premises and hands are washed, in line with government guidelines, on entry and exit from the building.

    I am considered a high-risk person; do I still receive engagement material?

    We understand and respect each residential property has a unique set of wishes and requirements during the lockdown and our distributors have reiterated they will not deliver to an individual who has requested not to receive material.

    Where can I find more information?

    If you have any concerns or further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Liveable Streets team below.

    liveablestreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk  (External link)

    0203 092 0401 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm)

    Liveable Streets 

    6th Floor Mulberry Place 

    PO Box 55739 

    5 Clove Crescent 

    London E14 2BG