TfL November Board Meeting: Roads and Buses


Traffic Signal Timing Reviews

333 signal timing reviews have been completed so far this financial year, delivering just over a seven per cent reduction in stop-start delays for traffic. This has been achieved alongside an almost two per cent increase in the number of occasions when all pedestrians waiting to cross the road will have cleared during the first green man.

London Permit Scheme

Since the introduction of the London Permit Scheme on 11 January, TfL has issued 38,093 permits and rejected 5,243. 245 Fixed Penalty Notices have been given to works undertakers, including 87 for working without a permit. In addition, 212 Section 74 charges have been imposed on works undertakers for overrunning works, and approximately 433 days of disruption have been saved through collaborative working.
Northbound Blackwall Tunnel Refurbishment

The project remains on track to complete six months ahead of schedule, and within budget, in June 2012. The night-time tunnel works on 6 September were cancelled to help mitigate the impact of the LU strike action, and the closure was delayed by an hour, to start at 10pm, during the October strike.

Improvement of the Elephant and Castle Southern Roundabout

On 8-10 October, the Elephant and Castle southern roundabout was converted to a traffic light controlled junction to help smooth traffic flow through the area. Work to change the traffic layout began in July, and included road resurfacing, installation of temporary traffic signals, and realigning kerbs and road markings. The project is part of the Mayor’s ‘Great Outdoors’ initiative, and has helped deliver wider paved areas, improved lighting, and additional street trees. New cycle lanes and advanced stop lines will also be installed.

Work will also begin to install new pedestrian crossings and to fill in the existing subway network underneath the roundabout. The full scheme, including improvements to the public space around the area, is anticipated to be completed by spring 2011.
Olympic Transport Coordination Centre (TCC)

TfL is delivering the centre for co-ordinating transport during the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. It will be set up to bring together all transport agencies to a single site for the duration of the Games. The centre will improve coordination and enable quick responses to each individual modal control centre. Updated detailed operating plans were issued to all Reference Group Members, in support of the first TCC exercise, held on 15 September.
Lane Rental

The DfT’s 90-day consultation on lane rental proposals was due to commence in July. However, the timetable for this has been delayed due to the need to brief new Ministers on the scheme. It is understood that any lane rental proposal would now be subject to the Government’s mandate that any regulation that introduces a new charge on business has to be balanced with the withdrawal of regulatory charges elsewhere. TfL has asked DfT to confirm that the delay in consultation will not have an impact on the overall programme, which would see regulations laid before Parliament in May 2011, and coming into force in October 2011 at the earliest.

Olympic Route Network (ORN) compliance

10 of the 12 boroughs that responded to the ORN Compliance Service Specification have confirmed that they wish to provide Civil Enforcement Officers to patrol the ORN during the Games. Responses are anticipated shortly from the remaining affected boroughs.

London Buses

Route 149 Conversion

On 17 October, route 149, which runs between Edmonton Green and London Bridge Station, was converted from articulated to double-decker buses. The route is the fourth to be converted. 35 new double-decker buses will run on the route, and frequencies will increase during peak hours Monday to Friday. The cost of running the service has been reduced by nearly £1 million over the life of the new contract. It is also estimated that moving from having bendy buses with open boarding to double-decker buses will save over £500,000 a year from fare evasion on this busy route.

Elimination of waste and loss is integral to the Japanese technique “Kaizan” It is beloved by buzzwordphile*** Management Consultants who if let loose will seize on fare evasion as fee fodder. Without wishing to sound like the retired armchair consultant, that I am; the trick here is to listen very carefully to those staff in the day to day firing line( including those of your franchisees). It is a truism but TfL probably knows how to tackle fare evasion but not know it knows. Sweat those corporate memory assets.)

*** another slam dunk Scrabble word – now who wants to play me for money.)
Oxford Street Bus Reductions

Further changes were made to routes serving Oxford Street in September, as part of delivering the Mayor’s commitment to a 10 per cent reduction in bus services in each of two years. Routes 15 and N15 were withdrawn between Regent Street and Paddington Basin – route 15 now runs between Regent Street and Blackwall Station, and route N15 between Regent Street and Romford. Route 159 now runs as a 24-hour service between Paddington Basin and Streatham, and route N159 has been withdrawn. New route N109 was introduced between Oxford Circus and Croydon, and the new route N64 was introduced between Thornton Heath Pond and New Addington.

On-Bus Ticketing Equipment

Approval was given to enhancements to on-bus ticketing equipment in September. This will further improve the reliability and availability of the equipment, and produce data about the specific stop at which each smartcard transaction takes place, which will be of value for bus network planning. Delivery will be integrated with TfL’s Future Ticketing project to use contactless bank cards to pay bus fares, for implementation by early 2012.

New Bus for London

Favourable coverage was received of the stage two mock-up of the bus (which demonstrates the fully fitted out state of the vehicle) following a preview event for the media on 15 September in Ballymena, Northern Ireland. The mock-up will be delivered to London, and the public launch and subsequent stakeholder engagement will take place in November. The chassis and bodywork for the proving (engineering test) vehicle is currently in the build stage.

In order that JB retains his place on Boris’s Christmas Card list, my lips are sealed until we have had a chance to see the mock up. We do of course accept, that as it is unpowered, that we will have to supply our own ding, ding, brum, hum, hum noises to lend the project verisimilitude.

East London Transit (ELT) Shortlisted for Bus Award

The East London Transit Phase 1a (ELT1a) project has earned TfL a shortlisted place in the Infrastructure category of the UK Bus Awards 2010. The winners will be announced at a presentation ceremony in London on 16 November.

ELT1a is a comprehensive upgrade of the bus service and supporting infrastructure along a nine kilometre route from Ilford to Dagenham Dock via Barking Town Centre. The project brings together unique and distinctive branding of bus livery and shelters, extensive highway and streetscape infrastructure, public art, and publicity materials to create a customer-focused package. It has succeeded in delivering high levels of bus priority, transforming the streetscape and smoothing traffic flow for all road users. New highway design has regulated parking and loading, and provided priority for bus passengers, while urban realm improvements have rejuvenated busy retail areas and provided improved accessibility to shops and services.

Again, if you are the “Man on the Dagenham” omnibus and use this service regularly can I recommend JB’s sympathetic e-mail ear hole. As Ronald Reagan once said “Trust but verify”.

East London Transit Phase 1b (ELT1b)

Following a Public Inquiry in January 2010, the Secretary of State for Transport had confirmed the TfL (East London Transit 1b) Compulsory Purchase Order 2009. This confirmation allows TfL to purchase the necessary land required for the scheme, and move into the construction phase of the project. The tender process for the Advanced Works will begin in November, with construction starting in early 2011.

Sale of East London Bus Group

The East London Bus Group, which has about 15 per cent of the market share in London, has been sold to Stagecoach. Stagecoach had previously sold the company to a group of investors managed by Macquarie in 2006. TfL welcomes Stagecoach back into the London market, and is confident that they will maintain the service quality that Londoners and TfL expect.


Dial-a-Ride delivered 98,758 trips from 22 August to 18 September, a 4.9 per cent increase on the same period last year. In the financial year to date, Dial-a-Ride delivered 629,863 trips against a target of 621,429. This is 8,434 more trips than planned, and nine per cent more than the same periods last year. 10,529 trips refused in the period were slightly higher than the 10,235 refused in the same period last year. However, the increase in trip delivery reduced the refusal rate to 8.5 per cent from 8.7 per cent in the same period last year.Reservation teams for Dial-a-Ride are operating under the Call Centre Association Global Standard requirements, to enable performance and monitoring arrangements to be embedded prior to final formal assessment in January 2011.

Written by Mwmbwls