Hackney Green Party believe Hackney Council has mismanaged the consultation process for the Quietways scheme in London Fields.
This has created local conflict and put promised improvements to walking and cycling at risk as a result. Residents and road users should have been involved from the start. This would have created a scheme that addressed local perspectives on how to create a better neighbourhood, while improving cycling and walking at the same time. From talking to residents it is clear that the Council have failed to properly work with communities, meaning that many people are feeling angry about the process and all of the options being presented to them.
In terms of the current consultation, of the four options available Hackney Green Party believe Option 1, which would trial traffic filtering on the streets just west of London Fields, is most likely to lead to improved quality of life in the area. Similar schemes in areas such as de Beauvoir have led to an improvement in quality of life for residents and a better walking and cycling environment without a big impact on traffic. However, it is vital that any trial is as open and transparent as possible, with involvement from residents and road-users at all stages. This is the best way to rebuild trust between the community and Hackney Council.
Our support for Option 1 does not mean we dismiss or discount the views of those who support other options or who oppose Option 1, and we have been working to ensure residents of all opinions know how to make their views heard in the consultation.
We hope that Hackney Council learn the lessons from this process, and in future adopt a more grassroots approach to improving our neighbourhoods.