Traffic stopped at KX at the height of rush hour last night when hundreds of cyclists and pedestrians staged an hour long ‘go slow’ to highlight the appalling design of the King’s Cross gyratory system.
The rush hour protest was spearheaded by Bikes Alive and may prove to be the first of a series. It was an inspiring experience to witness the entire gyratory filled with people cycling and walking – a vision of how roads could be if only they were designed for different types of road user instead of being designed solely for motor vehicles with everyone else expected to take their chances. Even the imminent ‘improvement’ works planned for the gyratory could end up making it worse.
Earlier yesterday, Boris Johnson, Mayor of London was accused of acting negligently since Transport for London (TfL) introduced its own safety standards in 2005.
Additionally, TfL may be guilty of corporate manslaughter after its repeated failure to act on calls by its own consultants to redesign the traffic system at King’s Cross resulted in the death last year of Deep Lee (Min Joo Lee).
Motorists (including cab drivers), pedestrians and cyclists have long called for removal of the one way system at King’s Cross. Redevelopment works here that started many years ago would have been the ideal opportunity to redesign the area. This would have made it safe and given the entire neighbourhood a much needed boost. Exactly as has been experienced in many other once ‘rough’ neighbourhoods that were home to one way systems – recognised for dragging communities down and creating no-go areas.