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Cheapside access praised by taxi trade, but good work to be undone by new Bank Junction restrictions

Revised Cheapside taxi access is welcomed, but that good work will be lost as new 24-hour Bank Junction restrictions are slapped on cabbies, says taxi representatives .

Councillor Shravan Joshi, Chairman of Planning & Transportation, welcomed recent changes to Cheapside and praised the trial’s implementation after attentive listening to the stakeholders' feedback.

Under the new Cheapside order, taxis will now be exempt from a point traffic restriction previously enforced on Cheapside, specifically near Bread Street. This decision, following careful considerations, received approval from the City's Streets & Walkways Committee.

The City of London hopes that this trial, combined with the exemption from the point traffic restriction, would result in an improvement in taxi availability and alleviate some of the challenges faced by taxi drivers navigating the area.

While this move has been welcomed by the Licensed Taxi Driver's Association (LTDA), they consider it to be only a small step towards addressing the larger issue at hand. They assert that granting access to the Bank Junction is of utmost importance to improve taxi availability and demonstrate to taxi drivers that the City is open for business.

However, contrasting with this move, forthcoming restrictions are set to be introduced next week, further impeding taxi access between Princes Street and Lombard Street in the area. These restrictions will be imposed round the clock, exacerbating the existing challenges faced by taxis. The LTDA and all other taxi representatives argue that taxis require the same level of access as buses across the Square Mile.

Echoing similar sentiments, the United Cabbies Group (UCG) emphasises that despite Black Cab availability having almost returned to pre-Covid levels in the West End, the ability to hail a cab in the City of London remains a significant problem during both day and night, particularly in and around Bank Junction and the neighbouring areas. They urge authorities to take this matter seriously and address the persistent obstacles faced by taxis.

Councillor Shravan Joshi, City of London Chiarman of Planning & Transportation, said: “After listening to stakeholders in the area, wishing to improve taxi availability along Cheapside, the City has implemented a 12 month trial to enable two way taxi flow.”

The Licensed Taxi Driver’s Association (LTDA) said: “This is a welcome but minor change, access to Bank Junction is urgently needed to improve taxi availability, show taxi drivers the City is open for business and deliver on ambitions to make the City a ‘destination’.

“Meanwhile, next week restrictions will be introduced even further limiting taxi access through Bank between Princes Street and Lombard Street, on a 24/7 basis which will make things even worse. Taxis need the same access as buses across the Square Mile.”

The United Cabbies Group (UCG) said: “The data is clear whilst Black Cab availability has returned to near pre-Covid levels in the West End, the ability to hail a cab in the City of London remains a significant problem during the day and at night. In particular around Bank Junction and the surrounding areas.”


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