Thursday 22 September 2011

Transport for London

I was under the impression that Transport for London was an organisation dedicated to an integrated transport system for London. That's what the name would suggest, but I think they should be called Traffic for London.
Why is this not the case?
Well, it was Sunday Monday Happy Days, Tuesday Wednesday not-so-happy Days.

On Sunday, I didn't really drive at all, so all was well. Monday was a regular commute to work, but lately the junction at Grove Park has been blocked. This has happened since the school holidays finished. The junction at Grove Park consists of 2 lanes, one of which is a right turn only and the other ahead only. Normally there is a bus trying to turn right and because the lanes aren't very wide, cars can squeeze by but lorries and buses can't.
Traffic for London has rescheduled the bus timetables so there are now 2 buses trying to get through the junction at the same time, one of which will have to stop and hold up the other traffic until the first one can make a right turn. The knock on effect is a 1 mile tailback as all the cars have to sit waiting patiently for the bus to go past. I queried this with Lewisham council but their response was quite dismissive. Clearly nobody who works at Lewisham council has to go through this junction to get to work.

Tuesday was weird. I was hoping it would be sunny so I could ride my motorbike in, but it rained in the morning so I drove. The journey to work was mostly fine, apart from Grove Park. The way back went exceptionally well, and I managed to get from Bromley to Shad Thames in 45 minutes or so. The problem was when I tried to get across Tower Bridge; it took me a further 50 minutes stuck in traffic. This is because some idiot decided it would be a good idea to open Tower Bridge to let a boat through at the same time as the Blackwall Tunnel and Rotherhithe tunnel had been closed.
Now for those of you unfamiliar with London, what this means is that the only ways to cross the river east of London Bridge (in the centre) are the Woolwich Ferry, which has queues all the time anyway, or the Dartford crossing, which is practically on the edge of London.
So there was traffic chaos. The whole area was gridlocked for hours. I shudder to think how much fuel was wasted.
Tomorrow as long as the weather is good, I'll be riding my motorbike! :)

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