Wandsworth traffic lights re-programming ahead of Olympics causing traffic chaos

Wimbledon Guardian: WAND Traffic lights re-programming ahead of Olympics causing traffic chaos WAND Traffic lights re-programming ahead of Olympics causing traffic chaos

Traffic lights re-programmed ahead of the Olympic Games are causing long delays for thousands of frustrated motorists.

Transport for London (TfL) said about 13,000 traffic lights have been re-programmed in order to increase flows of traffic and launch the Olympic Route Network (ORN).

But the move has resulted in traffic backing-up in roads such as Putney Hill, Battersea Bridge Road and Garratt Lane.

Drivers are being given far less time to pass through junctions, and have claimed that no warning was given that minor roads would have their lights re-programmed.

A spokesperson for TfL said: "For part of the measures of the Olympics Route Network 13,000 streets and signs have been re-programmed to increase flows of traffic beginning this weekend onwards.

"This is pretty much anything along that area in Putney. We have been advising motorists that we will be making those changes throughout on the Get Ahead of the Games website.

"We are advising motorists it is going to be really busy and to avoid driving in central London."
One angry motorist said: "This is going to cause complete misery and for what? Examples are Putney Bridge Rd, Putney High St, Putney Hill and Putney Heath.

"The A3 at Robin Hood was jammed back two miles at 9pm this evening just because of the lights."

Councillors are also calling on TfL to undo the changes, as Wandsworth Council has no power to interfere with the traffic lights.

Councillor Russell King said: "There is no doubt that some adjustments are needed on the Olympic network so that officials and athletes can get to and from the venues quickly.

"This is quite understandable as we all want the games to be a success. What is harder to comprehend is why these unannounced changes have been made at junctions that are nothing at all to do with the ORN.

"If they were hoping to speed up traffic flows, it is just not working. All it has done is create problems where none existed and made life simply intolerable for thousands of Londoners.

"It is absolutely vital that bosses at TfL listen to what the motoring public is saying, listen when the boroughs tell them there is a problem and respond swiftly to reverse these ill-thought out and badly conceived changes."

The ORN will launch in Wandsworth on July 25, which goes from Wimbledon, along Parkside and West Hill and through Battersea to Nine Elms.

Visit getaheadofthegames.com for more information or contact TfL’s customer care centre on 0845 305 1234.

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