The London Mayor has refuted claims that less people will use London taxis as more road access is denied.
Whilst the London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, admitted to being aware of small sections of roads being closed to cars on the grounds of safety or environmental reasons, he was quick to point out the “vast majority” of the capital remains accessible to taxis.
The claim comes as he answered a recent question put forward to the Mayor by London Assembly Member David Kurten.
Kurten asked Khan: “Do you accept the more roads that are inaccessible to taxis, the less people will use taxis, therefore, the taxi trade will continue to reduce in size?”
Sadiq Khan responded in writing, stating: ‘No. London’s taxis are rightly world renowned and this is in no small part due to the fact that every driver has undertaken and passed the Knowledge of London. This extraordinary process requires them to memorise the many thousands of streets and points of interest within a 6-mile radius of Charing Cross – enabling them to navigate the complex streets of London and delivering their passengers to their chosen destination by the shortest route, no matter what the traffic conditions.
“There are now approximately 660 taxi ranks in London, considerably more than the 20 per cent increase in rank numbers that I committed to in my Taxi and Private Hire Action Plan published in 2016. In addition, Transport for London’s records show that 22 additional bus lanes have been made available to taxis since May 2016, and that 93 per cent of bus lanes across London permit taxi access (this figure includes borough roads and those on the Transport for London Road Network).
“I am aware that a small number of borough and City of London roads have been closed to traffic, other than buses and cycles, predominantly for safety or environmental reasons, however the vast majority of London remains accessible to taxis.”
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