Why has Arthur Street been closed for so long?
We temporarily closed Arthur Street in 2015 as part of the works for the Bank Station Capacity Upgrade. This was to allow us to use Arthur Street as an access point for the complex works needed to build the new tunnel under the City of London. Throughout this time Arthur Street has remained open to pedestrians. When this temporary closure was introduced, the northbound 344 bus route was re-routed from Southwark Bridge to London Bridge (the southbound 344 already followed the route along London Bridge so was unaffected). Now that the new Bank Station will be reopening we are looking at how we can reopen Arthur Street to best meet the needs of our customers and Londoners.
What are you proposing?
We are proposing to reopen Arthur Street to pedestrians, cyclists and emergency service vehicles, and vehicles needed to access buildings on Arthur Street. In order to make these improvements we would upgrade the pedestrian crossing at the junction with Upper Thames Street, install new signage and make changes to junction markings and advanced stop lines. These improvements are in line with the proposals consulted on as part of the Cycle Superhighway 3 consultation.
At the junction with King William Street we would introduce a modal filter for cycles, install new signage and upgrade the path for pedestrians.
We are also proposing to permanently route the 344 bus via London Bridge (northbound and southbound); this reflects the diversion northbound in place since 2015.
How will this benefit me?
Our proposals would create a more cycle-friendly environment and allow cyclists to avoid the busy junction of Upper Thames Street and King William Street. Before the closure in 2015, the junction with King William Street was identified on TfL’s Safer Junctions list as a junction on the Transport for London Road network with a high number of vulnerable road users who were killed or seriously injured. Our proposals in this consultation are therefore an important part of our Vision Zero aim. They would also give an overall benefit to customers using the 344 bus route by providing an accessible route from London Bridge station.
What is Vision Zero?
Vision Zero represents our aim to eradicate deaths and serious injuries from our roads and make London a safer, healthier and greener place by 2041.
Major cities around the world are taking a stand to end the toll of deaths and injury seen on their roads and transport networks by committing to Vision Zero. London is at the forefront of this approach and the Mayor's Transport Strategy sets out the goal that, by 2041, all deaths and serious injuries will be eliminated from London's transport network.
It is neither inevitable nor acceptable that anyone should be killed or seriously injured when travelling in London. When we leave our homes each day, we should feel safe and confident about the journey ahead.
The proposals at the junction of Arthur Street with King William Street are part of the work we are doing towards meeting the Vision Zero.
Why are you changing the route of the 344 bus?
The diversion of the 344 bus route was a temporary measure. We have looked at how we can best meet the needs of our customers and Londoners when producing our proposals. Permanently routing the 344 via London Bridge (northbound and southbound) would maintain an important and accessible transport option from London Bridge station and give an overall benefit to our customers.
Why can’t the 344 bus use Arthur Street?
We feel that the most appropriate use for Arthur Street is to improve the environment and safety for vulnerable road users. This means that the road would no longer be open for buses or other vehicles (except emergency service vehicles). The proposals for the junction with Upper Thames Street would also not allow for the 344 bus to use this junction and therefore the route from London Bridge would be more appropriate and give the most benefit to customers.
Will this impact bus journey times?
While it is unclear right now if the proposed routeing via London Bridge would change journey times, we think any change would be negligible as the route proposed gives a more direct journey to and from the City.
When could these changes happen?
Subject to consultation and further approvals from the City of London, the changes could be made from Summer 2023.