CS11 ‘isn’t happening’: Mayor and TfL confirm cycle superhighway project shelved after legal defeats
PUBLISHED: 07:00 07 March 2019
Sadiq Khan and Transport for London (TfL) have confirmed to the Ham&High that controversial cycling route CS11 “isn’t happening”.
The transport authority saw its decision to press ahead with the portion of the route at the Swiss Cottage gyratory successfully challenged in the High Court by Westminster City Council last July and in February it exhausted all routes of appealing the decision.
The mayor of London Mr Khan told this newspaper: “CS11 as it currently stands isn’t happening. I am so angry at the actions of Westminster Council.”
He added he would be looking to work with “a coalition of the willing” including Camden and Islington councils to “make our city more cycle-friendly”.
Westminster successfully argued that TfL should have modelled what would happen to traffic in Westminster if it only built the Swiss Cottage part of CS11.
Asked if it would be completing the traffic modelling, and if the mayor’s comments meant CS11 was dead, the authority’s head of programme sponsorship Nigel Hardy said: “We are hugely disappointed with the outcome of the legal action brought by Westminster.
“In the short term, we will re-focus our efforts on areas in London where we can work together with boroughs to create healthy streets and reduce danger to people walking and cycling. Road danger at Swiss Cottage still needs to be reduced. We will continue to look at what can be done to transform this intimidating, traffic-dominated and outdated junction.”
Construction was set to start in July 2018 when Westminster obtained an injunction and then forced a judicial review at which High Court judge Sir Ross Cranston criticised TfL and the mayor.
The judge ruled that beginning CS11 while having not completed the requisite traffic modelling was unlawful, and he criticised Sadiq Khan, saying the mayor had “not even taken up the reins” of his transport strategy.
Justin McKie of the Regent’s Park Cyclists group criticised Westminster Council and local anti-CS11 campaigners. He said: “It’s massively disappointing. If an accident happens at that junction it will be on their necks.
“It’s incredibly dangerous, and Westminster have repeatedly vetoed plans to make this city more cycle-friendly.”
Westminster’s Cllr Tim Mitchell said: “We want to do the best thing for residents and cyclists and remain willing to work with TfL on a way forward.”
Campaigner Jessica Learmond-Criqui, who also brought an injunction against CS11, said it was “fabulous news” for children in Camden who she said would now not be effected by increased pollution which may have been brought about by the route’s construction.
She added that she and a number of Hampstead groups were hoping to work “holistically” to improve transport infrastructure in the NW3 area.
TfL confirmed it had spent £42,619 fighting the court action and was in discussion with Westminster over legal fees.