Campaign against Uxbridge Road trams claims Chiswick streets could be brought to a standstill by scheme

The Save Ealing's Streets campaign is urging Chiswick residents to lobby against the planned Uxbridge Road tram claiming it could mean a substantial amount of displaced traffic ending up on Chiswick's roads.

On 29th May this year, Ken Livingstone announced that he was giving the go ahead for the West London Tram scheme. Over the next year Transport for London and Ealing Council will work on the detailed proposals which the are expected to be put out for consultation in summer 2003.

Dave Wetzell, Vice-Chair of Transport for London, has now promised an investigation into the issues being raised by local residents.


A existing tram system operating in Croydon. Copyright Mark Jansen

Concerns have been expressed about the narrowness of the Uxbridge Road particularly at Acton High Street which is likely to have to be closed to through traffic if the tram scheme is implemented. The buildings are 13 metres apart at the narrowest point with 17.3 metres required for four lanes of traffic.

Hounslow Council's residents were not consulted about this plan because the tram will not pass directly through the Chiswick area. However, some residents in Homefields ward will live less than 300 yards from the scheme. Ealing Council residents, including those in Chiswick, received forms and 86% supported the concept of a West London Transit system with the tram being the most popular option. 38% preferred this technology, with 22% for the next best option of a trolley bus. Opponents of the scheme claim the consultation was invalid because it was not made clear that sections of the Uxbridge Road would need to be closed to traffic in certain sections.

Local transport campaigner Peter Eversden said, "The diversions of existing traffic described in the TfL report are amazing. Eastbound traffic would have to leave the Uxbridge Road and use Askew Road and Goldhawk Road to reach Shepherds Bush. (They would then join a percentage of the extra 30,000 cars daily that will be trying to reach the White City Retail Park.) Acton High Street is to be closed to all vehicles, apart from trams and buses. "

He claimed that there has been no estimate of the impact in residential streets nor of the number of drivers who will use other routes than those defined saying that many will join the current rat-run that uses Popes Lane, Bollo Lane, Southfield Road and/or South Parade to reach Goldhawk Road. If that road is then blocked by the White City Retail Park traffic and vehicles diverting from the tram route, he believes Stamford Brook Road will be at a standstill and Chiswick High Road will get far more traffic. He urged the use of high capacity "bendy-buses" as a more viable transport alternative for the Uxbridge Road.

The Save Ealing's Streets campaign is planning a rally outside the GLA building on 16th October when a petition will be presented to Ken Livingstone.


Discussion of this issue on the ChiswickW4.com forum

Save Ealing's Streets - Details about the Campaign

The Story So Far - Documentation relating to the scheme

Mayor Says Yes to West London tram scheme

Trams in Acton June 2002 ActonW3.com

"The Uxbridge Road will get trams, Chiswick will get traffic." October 2001 ChiswickW4.com

Map of planned route (Adobe Acrobat required)

Contact details for your MP

August 3, 2002