Lib Dem London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon recently tabled this question to the Mayor of London:
I have been contacted by many constituents concerned that bus services using Jamaica Road – such as the 188 and 47 – are being severely disrupted due to congestion during peak periods. What does TfL plan to do to mitigate this situation for passengers?
This week Boris Johnson replied:
Route 47’s reliability has been affected by roadworks in Lewisham and at Ludgate, Aldgate and Cannon Street in the City. To mitigate, the service is temporarily curtailed to Liverpool Street from Shoreditch. Additionally, a new schedule with additional buses and drivers will be in operation from 14 March 2015. TfL will continue to closely monitor performance following these changes.
A new schedule was also implemented on route 188 on 10 January 2015. As part of the Roads Modernisation Plan it is planned to invest £200 million between now and 2023/24 to maintain and improve the reliability of journey times on key bus routes. TfL officers plan to commence a study of route 188 by the end of March to inform the development of additional bus priority from 2015/16 onwards.
At last week’s transport-themed community council meeting Rotherhithe councillor Stephanie Cryan launched a petition calling on Transport for London to improve the C10 bus service and reduce the number of buses turned round at the Rotherhithe Tunnel roundabout rather than covering the full route via Rotherhithe Street to Canada Water.
Last week TfL introduced a new timetable on the C10 to improve reliability. The number of vehicles required to run the service has been increased by one from 15 to 16.
Cllr Neil Coyle (Labour’s prospective parliamentary candidate for Bermondsey & Old Southwark) said: “The C10 is the only bus that serves much of the Rotherhithe and Surrey Docks area, but several times every day the bus just gives up before it gets to Rotherhithe, and that just isn’t good enough.
“Residents in this area deserve better, which is why we’re calling on TfL to improve the service it provides. I would encourage residents in the area to add their voice to our campaign for better transport for Rotherhithe and Surrey Docks.”
From 12 January 2015 until August 2016, major Network Rail modernisation work will take place at London Bridge station and Southeastern rail services to and from Charing Cross will not call at London Bridge. Southeastern services from New Cross, St. Johns, Deptford, Greenwich, Maze Hill and Westcombe Park stations will no longer operate to and from London Charing Cross or Waterloo East, and will instead operate to and from London Cannon Street. No Bedford to Brighton Thameslink trains will call at London Bridge station until January 2018.
TfL has warned that parts of the London Overground network, especially Canada Water, Brockley and New Cross, the DLR and some bus services are also likely to be busier.
“Customers who have flexibility in their journey times are advised to avoid peak times at Canada Water if they can,” said TfL in a statement on Friday.
The Underground ticket office at Bermondsey will close in April 2015 and Canada Water station will lose its ticket windows between July and September, Transport for London has announced.
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: “With major line upgrades continuing apace, a new 24-hour Tube service and more staff out and about to help customers at stations, it’s clear that 2015 will be a key chapter in the history of our iconic Tube. The network is carrying a staggering number of people each day and as our population grows we are continuing to invest to ensure the Tube’s future success. Our plans are all about giving the Tube the tools it needs to keep London and its economy moving in the 21st century.”
Mike Brown, managing director of London Underground, said: “A year ago the Mayor and I set out our vision for a Tube network and service that is truly fit for London and our customers in the 21st century: a better face-to-face service at our stations, a 24-hour service at weekends, modern trains and stations and facilities that reflect what our customers want.”
The government has called for further investigation into plans for a new bridge across the Thames between Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf.
The National Infrastructure Plan – published by the Treasury on Tuesday – contains this sentence:
An interesting proposal made by Sustrans, and worth looking at in more detail, would be a new pedestrian and cycle bridge from Rotherhithe to Canary Wharf – which could be called the Brunel Bridge in tribute to one of the great figures in the history of UK infrastructure.
Simon Hughes MP said: “It is clear to me that a river crossing between Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf is long overdue.
“This is a project which I have championed, and which will make a real difference to the lives of a great many local people.
“The government has now made a commitment to take an interest in the proposal for a new cycle and pedestrian bridge, named the Brunel Bridge in tribute to the great father and son pioneers of UK infrastructure.
“This is great progress – and I will keep fighting to deliver the Brunel Bridge for the people of Bermondsey, Rotherhithe and the rest of London.”
The project to lengthen trains on London Overground from four carriages to five has finally become a reality with the first lengthened train now in public service.
Work to extend platforms at Canada Water and Surrey Quays has now been completed.
At Rotherhithe the longer trains will not fit into the platforms so the two rear sets of doors in the back carriage will not open at this station.
At Canada Water even the extended platforms are too short so the rear set of doors will remain shut.
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “With punctual services and an ever growing number of passengers I think it’s fair to say that London Overground has been a fantastic railway success story. Adding an extra carriage to the trains that criss-cross this network will allow more people to take advantage of what is now one of the most reliable and trusted rail services in the UK. As London’s population continues to rise, it is investment in our transport network like this which will help to keep London and its economy on the up.”
TfL’s Managing Director of London Rail, Mike Brown, said: “The ever-increasing popularity of the London Overground network has seen a huge rise in demand. As a result, we are now on course to carry 135m passengers – nearly four times the number we carried when we took over this railway in 2007.
“To enable us to continue and maintain the high levels of safe, reliable and frequent travel that our customers have come to expect, it is vital that we deliver more capacity by lengthening our trains from four to five carriages.
“We have set a standard for highly successful rail services and this is the model we will follow when we take over three-quarters of the rail services out of Liverpool Street station next year.”