Controversial Bus Gate to go

Bus priority scheme near the junction of Chiswick High Road and Chiswick Lane to be scrapped


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The Chiswick Area Committee will be presented with a report later this month recommending the scrapping of the controversial scheme. Subject to funding from Transport for London the gate is expected to be removed.

The signalised bus gate immediately to the west of Homefield Road was put in place to allow buses continuing west up Chiswick High Road to jump the queue at the junction with Chiswick Lane. In practise because of the unusual lay out of the junction non-compliance was high with many drivers moving into the left hand lane in anticipation of turning left into Chiswick Lane.

The bus gate’s proximity to Homefield Road also causes difficulties for drivers accessing or leaving this road. Those accessing Homefield Road have insufficient waiting space while those leaving are unsure whether to turn left into the remaining few metres of the bus lane or to risk obstructing the bus lane while attempting to join the queue in the general traffic lane.

An initial review of the above facilities was instigated in November 2002, resulting in a package of measures including additional signage and roadmarkings in an attempt to clarify the situation and improve compliance. However the gate continued to pose problems and the lack of an enforcement camera meant that deliberately illegal use of the bus gate to queue jump was common-place.

A report to be presented to the Chiswick Area Committee on July 16th acknowledges that the space between the gate and the junction is too short to allow the smooth running of traffic.

At the same time it is proposed that the existing bus lane be changed to 24 hour operation and that an enforcement camera be put in place near the junction. The Chiswick Area Committee were asked to consider the implementation of 24 hour bus lanes but deferred a decision until a further report on the future of the bus gate was presented.

The report also recommends that the junction of Chiswick High Road and the Stamford Brook bus garage should be signalised. This would allow westbound bus lane traffic to proceed at all times through this junction while general traffic on Chiswick High Road would be held when necessary to allow buses to safely exit the bus garage.

A review of signal timing and phasing at the Chiswick Lane junction is also underway, and may provide additional traffic flow benefits including a possible left filter arrow for traffic turning from Chiswick High Road into Chiswick Lane. Regardless of the outcome of this review, the signals at Chiswick Lane and Stamford Brook bus depot will be linked to ensure optimum traffic flows.

Removal of the two traffic islands between Ennismore Avenue and Homefield Road is suggested to improve the space available for traffic waiting to make a right turn into these side-roads.

Implementation for the changes is also dependent on TfL funding for the proposed package of changes, which is currently under negotiation.

July 4, 2003

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Bus Gate to stay forever - the Information Minister speaks