This article was published in 2007, in Newsletter 73.
With the work on the Grand Arcade shopping centre reaching its final stages, plans are now available for the revised layout and signal details for the junction of Downing Street and St Andrew’s Street.
During the works the area here has been very constricted, but as the construction work comes to an end, not only will Downing Street be widened, but the ‘Core Stage 4’ restrictions should mean far less motor traffic, at least in St Andrew’s Street northbound (towards the city centre). There will be cycle approach lanes and advanced stop boxes as well as widening for buses making the left turn, and a pedestrian phase in the lights. It is hoped that the widening on the corner adjacent to the new John Lewis shop will vastly reduce the number of buses that cross into the cycle approach lane.
Of course in an ideal world we’d have a ‘left turn filter’ for cyclists entering Downing Street from St Andrew’s Street, but Department for Transport rules forbid such things. Regular users will know that the green light for cyclists to turn left is just the time when pedestrians cross the mouth of Downing Street, and this has resulted in the hospitalisation of at least one cyclist.
Two members of the Campaign met an officer from Cambridgeshire County Council, on site, to review the plans. We asked that the order of the phases be changed so that the ‘pedestrian phase’ immediately precedes the phase that permits cyclists to turn left into Downing Street as we hope that will reduce conflicts. We also asked for the contraflow lane in Downing Street to be prominently marked, and suggested some changes to the layout of lanes in St Andrew’s Street southbound.
Road space to allow these changes should become available in September, when the temporary transformer sub-station on this corner is to be removed.