Torrington Place / Tavistock Place route: Proposed improvements for walking and cycling

Closed 21 Oct 2016

Opened 12 Sep 2016


In November 2015 we introduced a trial that changed the route that motor traffic used along the corridor of streets that includes Torrington Place, Byng Place, Gordon Square, Tavistock Square and Tavistock Place. We also made some temporary improvements for pedestrians and cyclists by making the corridor mainly eastbound only for motor vehicles and introducing a partially segregated (protected) cycle lane on the southern section of the street. The existing segregated cycle lane on the north side was kept and some changes made to parking and loading.
This consultation asks for your views on the current street layout at Torrington Place / Tavistock Place, which was implemented as a trial. We would like your opinion on whether to keep the current layout (with improvements such as wider pavements and stepped cycle tracks) or to remove it completely and return the street to its former, pre-trial layout (with two traffic lanes and a single, two-way cycle track).
Throughout the trial we’ve been meeting with residents and businesses to collect their feedback. Feedback received and data collected during the trial, along with the results of the consultation, will be considered when making a decision. 
You can find further details about the trial and proposed changes in the supporting document 'Detailed information' at the bottom of this page.

Why your views matter

The trial was introduced to address a number of issues:
  • In 2015 this route was the busiest street for cycling in Camden and one of the busiest in London. The previous cycle lane had become overcrowded, causing safety problems.
  • With narrow pavements, a two-way segregated cycle lane (on one side of the street) and a traffic lane in each direction, the previous road layout did not provide a safe and attractive environment for the many pedestrians using the street.
  • Despite high levels of cycling, only a small proportion of the road provided protected space for cycling.
  • The route suffered from a high casualty record, particularly due to collisions between motor vehicles and cyclists, cyclists and cyclists, and motor vehicles and pedestrians.
  • The road is not wide enough to provide more space for walking and cycling without reducing the space available for motor traffic.
  • As part of the approval for the West End Project (, we agreed to bring forward proposals for a trial to reduce the impact of through traffic on local residents in Torrington Place between Gower Street and Tottenham Court Road.


What is planned for the Torrington Place / Tavistock Place route?
If a decision is taken to keep the current (trial) street layout, the following improvements will be made to make the route safer and more attractive for all users:
  • Wider pavements.
  • Raising the road to the level of the pavement at junctions to improve safety and provide more priority for pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Improved cycle safety at signal junctions (subject to traffic signal modelling and approval from Transport for London).
  • Remove kerb used to separate the cycle lane from the traffic lane, and the rubber blocks used for the trial. These would be replaced with stepped cycle tracks, eastbound and westbound, on either side of a single one-way traffic lane. (A stepped track runs between the pavement and the road. It is lower than the pavement, and higher than the carriageway for traffic.)
  • More cycle parking facilities and, where possible, new trees and other planting.
  • Retain the taxi rank and loading bays provided as part of the trial.


Artist's impression of proposed layout:

If the trial layout is not made permanent, the street layout will go back to its former, pre-trial layout. 

What happens next

All responses received to the proposals contained in this consultation will be taken into account and presented in a report to the Council. Along with the results of this consultation, feedback received and data collected during the trial will be considered. A decision is likely to be taken in early 2017.



  • All Areas


  • Anyone from any background


  • Transport and streets