Tram to divert traffic from Uxbridge Road to A4

New TfL plans to divert 20,000 cars down Askew Road and through Chiswick

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Contact details of key figures:
Tim Jones, Project Director,

Councillor John Cudmore (leader)

Since the discussions at the special Transport Committee meeting on September 6th about the Uxbridge Road tram proposals, Transport for London have clarified their ideas about the Acton traffic diversions. Their earlier plan showed some diverted traffic in Acton disappearing off the edge of a map. I suggested to the Transport Committee members that TfL may intend a long diversion on to the A40 and (presumably) down the M41 past the large White City Retail Park into a Shepherds Bush Green with half its usable carriageway width removed. TfL now seem to be confirming that. A request by residents' groups in Acton for clarification about new information available at the tram scheme exhibitions revealed that TfL propose now to divert westbound traffic from the Uxbridge Road towards the A4 if the tram is implemented.

This gives rise to further concerns about noise, pollution and danger. The future prospects are uncertain of businesses along the Uxbridge Road without rear vehicle access.

It is not clear how TfL will promulgate these changes to its proposals, so late in the consultation period, nor whether they intend to deliver information to all households that would (a) experience any change in the movement of diverted traffic, or, (b) suffer from the impact of potential driver 'rat-running' in areas further away, due to difficult or slow diversion routes.

Amenity societies had thought that the local consultative group meetings in 2003 had been arranged to sort out these options but it appears that we are starting again, with TfL "keen to hear people's comments".

The use of Askew Road as a westbound diversion for around 20,000 vehicles a day with some unknown route from there "in the direction of the A4/M4", as below, is a new proposal and will come as a surprise to people in Chiswick and the boroughs of Hounslow and Hammersmith & Fulham.

There are only three main routes from Askew Road to the westbound carriageway of the A4. One is Chiswick Lane to Hogarth roundabout, which has a tail-back of up to forty vehicles in the evening peak period. Another is Chiswick High Road to Chiswick roundabout (on the North/South Circular roads). The third is a route off Chiswick High Road around Turnham Green Common and down Sutton Court Road to traffic lights on the A4 which provide a short duration right turn opportunity but also with an evening vehicle tail-back.

The likely traffic routes for the diverted traffic from the A4/M4 corridor northwards, back to Ealing and the Uxbridge Road, can be only guessed at this stage.

Peter Eversden

Chairman, London Forum of Amenity & Civic Societies

September 21, 2004