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DAYTIME BLACK CAB BAN: Controversial Bishopsgate bus gate will become permanent says TfL

Updated: Jul 16, 2023

Image credit: Transport for London

Transport for London (TfL) will be making its controversial scheme on the A10 Bishopsgate permanent amid claims of faster bus journey times and safer cycle journeys.

In August 2020, TfL introduced a series of temporary changes along the road in response to the pandemic, which were designed to make it safer and easier for people to walk, cycle and use public transport. The changes implemented included new restrictions on vehicles and taxis using the road on weekdays between 7am and 7pm. Wider footways were also constructed along the corridor to ensure social distancing and a number of banned turns were introduced along the road.

The changes were heavily opposed by the licensed taxi industry as access through Bishopsgate at peak times diminished. It was argued that wheelchair users and other disabled passengers were now forced to take longer and more expensive routes around the Bishopsgate bus gates. The action resulted in a Judicial Review of the plans.

Despite initially winning the case, the Court of Appeal overturned the decision ruling in TfL’s favour in the summer of 2021.

TfL led data suggests that the changes have played a ‘vital role in supporting sustainable travel along the corridor’.

Last year, TfL launched a public consultation into the future of the scheme on the A10 Bishopsgate and if it should be made permanent and received more than 2,150 responses from cyclists, cycling lobbying groups, motorists and other members of the public.

The decision to make the changes permanent will be followed by short-term upgrades to improve the streetscape, as well as further safety and public realm improvements in future years.

Helen Cansick, TfL’s Head of Healthy Streets Investment, said: “We're determined to ensure that people can walk and cycle safely across the capital and our data suggests that the changes we’ve made along Bishopsgate have played an important role in promoting healthy and sustainable ways of travelling in London. As a result of our bold changes here, it has become much safer for vulnerable road users, and bus journey times have reduced.”

Will Norman, London's Walking and Cycling Commissioner, said: "These changes at Bishopsgate have made a huge difference to the way people travel through the area, which is why I’m delighted they’ll now be made permanent. The area has become safer for both pedestrians and cyclists, and bus journey times have reduced thanks to the new vehicle restrictions on the road. Schemes like this support our aim to continue building a safer, greener and fairer Londoner for everyone.”


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