Proposals to introduce a Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN) in an part of central Greenwich has been launched, aiming to improve the area's air-quality and safety.

The LTN, which uses modal filters, bollards, cameras and planters to block off certain residential routes to cars in heavy traffic areas, is being proposed for the Westcombe Park and Maze Hill area.

The proposals will make the roads cleaner and safer for residents, improving the environment and reducing rat-running through traffic, say Greenwich Council.

But LTNs deployed elsewhere in central London, including Lewisham and Croydon, have proved extremely controversial.

A public consultation inviting views and feedback is running on the plans until March 8 and can be accessed here.

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Cllr Sizwe James, council cabinet member for Environment, Sustainability and Transport, said: “Forty per cent of households in Royal Greenwich don’t have access to a car.

"Yet motorised traffic can disproportionally affect all residents’ quality of life due to air and noise pollution, speeding and illegal parking.

"We need to create a transport network which provides safe travel options for all residents and to do this we need to avoid a car-led recovery.”

The council is proposing introducing the LTN between Westcombe Park and Maze Hill mainly to target drivers who use residential streets as a shortcut, dubbed rat-running.

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LTN's stop traffic shortcuts through residential roads by using barriers, such as planters, bollards or cameras.

Residents and businesses can still access their homes and premises, but may have to take a slightly longer route, whilst a quieter, more attractive network of streets is opened-up, argues the council.

Encouraging people to travel on foot, by bicycle, by wheeling or by bus, this is part of the council's plans to tackle its climate change target. In Greenwich, a third of greenhouse gas emissions come from cars, vans and trucks.

The LTN is also expected to tackle air pollution, which is famously high in the capital - Long term exposure to air pollution can cause chronic conditions such as lung cancer and reduce life expectancy.

Greenwich Council say that the borough's and country's residential roads were never designed for the current high levels of motorised traffic, which has doubled in the last decade.

They state the in Greenwich alone, the number of miles driven on its roads increased by 130 million between 2014 and 2019.

The proposed LTN uses the railway line as a natural barrier, controlling the points where roads cross the line in order to stop the traffic.

The affected points are Maze Hill, Vanbrugh Hill, Halstow Road and Westcombe Hill.

One of the major criticisms of LTNs is the problem they cause to emergency services unable to travel quickly to their destinations.

But Greenwich Council say the closure points would use camera enforcement that allow emergency services and taxis through apart from Halstow Road that would be closed to motorised traffic with a planter or lockable bollard.

An LTN already installed in the Crystal Palace area has split opinion in the area, with some supporting its benfits, others bemoaning the 'pain and suffering' caused to local residents.

The ideas have been criticised as heavily flawed in some areas, with roads just outside the LTNs seeing spikes in traffic, emergency services blocked off and money generally wasted.

But others have praised them, stating that having fewer cars in the road meant people felt safer cycling on the road.

Croydon Council announced just last week that the planters blocking roads to traffic in the area were set to be removed.

Last month, the High Court ruled in favour of taxi drivers that Transport for London’s “Streetspace” plan affected them unlawfully.

Have your say on the Greenwich proposals here.