City Hall has announced that construction work on Cycleway 4, which will eventually link Tower Bridge and Greenwich, will begin on July 5th.
Work will start on an initial section between Tower Bridge and Rotherhithe Roundabout and will include the installation of new five new pedestrian crossings and improvements to the roundabout.
Transport for London says the most disruptive works will be carried out during the school summer holidays “where possible” and that its contractors will work longer hours to reduce construction time.
The agency is also pledging to monitor traffic signals in the area and says it will make changes to timings where necessary to reduce any impact on traffic flow.
Despite these measures it says drivers and bus users in the area “should expect delays” and advises that they allow plenty of time for their journeys.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “I’m delighted that work is about to begin on this major new cycle route in south-east London.
“High-quality segregated cycle routes greatly increase the numbers of people who feel confident cycling on our streets, and with new pedestrian crossings along the route road danger will be substantially reduced for thousands of pedestrians too.”
Gareth Powell, TfL’s Managing Director of Surface Transport, said: “Cycleway 4 will transform streets for local people between Tower Bridge and Greenwich, making walking and cycling much safer and easier for thousands of people every day, as well as making local streets more pleasant places to spend time.
“We’d like to thank local residents, visitors and businesses for their patience whilst construction work takes place and would encourage people in the area to plan ahead while work to create the route is underway.”
Confirmation of the start date has been welcomed by the London Cycling Campaign with Infrastructure Campaigner Simon Munk saying: “The arrival of Cycleway 4 is fantastic news.
“This is a major step towards the Mayor’s commitment to London Cycling Campaign to triple the mileage of protected space for cycling on London’s main roads.
“When complete, this route will bring safer cycling to many more people of all ages and abilities, than currently ride on these hostile streets.
“We look forward also to the upcoming Southwark Lower Road scheme to fill the gap in this scheme and to future extensions to Woolwich and London Bridge.”
Today’s announcement comes just days after Kensington and Chelsea council blocked construction of a 4.7mile route between Notting Hill and Wood Lane citing concerns over congestion and air quality.
In a letter to council leader Elizabeth Campbell released by City Hall on Wednesday, Mr Khan expressed his “profound unhappiness” at the decision.
Citing figures showing the “vast majority” of people injured along the planned route over the past three years have been pedestrians and cyclists, the Mayor warns that “doing nothing about the safety on your roads in not an option.”