Proposals for new crossings and more loos for London – Budget 2022-23

Caroline Russell today proposed funds to refurbish and build new toilets and to design pedestrian crossings for the most dangerous roads, in an amendment to the Mayor’s budget. [1]

The fully-financed plans, which used only £11.5 million of the £277 million currently in the Mayor’s business rates reserve. These funding plans proposed £10 million for a brand-new London toilets fund to give local councils access to money to refurbish, reopen and revitalise these essential local amenities.

The budget amendment also included £1.5 million on designs for new pedestrian crossings for 50 of the most dangerous signal controlled junctions that do not currently have a crossing facility for people walking.

The amendment was supported by Green London Assembly Members Caroline Russell, Zack Polanski and Sian Berry, and Liberal Democrat Assembly Members Caroline Pidgeon MBE and Hina Bokhari.

Caroline Russell said:

“More safe crossings and decent, free loos shouldn’t be a tough sell. The urgent need for more toilets and crossings is acute. We can see this for ourselves if we simply spend a day travelling around London with our family and friends.

“Where we should be seeing increased funding for better roads and facilities, we are seeing further cuts and ‘managed decline’.

“The Mayor and the Assembly had a powerful opportunity to stand up for a more accessible, and better, city by taking action to improve dangerous junctions littered across London and I am disappointed that it was voted down today.

“Our roads should be safe for children, older and disabled people to walk along and cross without dodging traffic.

“Nobody should be dehydrating themselves because they don’t know when they’ll find a loo. I will not stop raising these fundamental but often forgotten accessibilities that, if funded properly, make London a safe, connected and world leading city.”

Caroline argued that this modest investment will mean that when TfL finances are stabilised, it will have shovel-ready schemes that both reduce road danger and support the Mayor’s manifesto commitment to ‘improve the safety of the most dangerous junctions’.

On the 26 January, at the Draft Budget Plenary, the Assembly supported two City Hall Green budget-related motions, calling on the Mayor to provide a broad estimate of the cost of cancelling the Silvertown Road Tunnel, and to provide more toilets and new pedestrian crossings in London. [2],[3]

The City Hall Green Budget Amendment 2022-23 was not passed by the London Assembly today.

[1] City hall greens Budget Amendment 2022-23

[2] Mayor should provide cost of cancelling the Silvertown Road Tunnel. London Assembly press release, Jan 2022

[3] Mayor should fund more toilets and crossings. London Assembly press release, Jan 2022