|Trees Are Not Just For Christmas|
New trees planted on Putney High Street
New trees are being planted along Putney High Street as part of a wider package of environmental improvements across the town centre.
The high street is to benefit from a £250,000 programme of investment designed to upgrade pavements, reduce pollution and cut traffic congestion.
The proposed works include measures to make it safer and easier for pedestrians negotiating the high street, while changes to the road layout and other highway alterations are expected to improve traffic flows and reduce the chance of hold ups.
And as part of a wider eco-scheme across the whole borough, Putney High Street is one of the sites benefiting from new trees. This winter 450 new trees will be planted in residential streets, town centres, housing estates and parks and open spaces. These are on top of the 371 trees that were planted at the beginning of this year.
Environment spokesman Cllr Jonathan Cook who was involved in the planting on Sunday morning said: “These new high street trees will I’m sure be welcomed by everyone who lives, works and shops in Putney. As well as improving the town centre’s appearance, these new trees will also play a role in our ongoing efforts to tackle pollution and bring cleaner air to the high street.”
Speaking about the £250,000 improvement scheme, transport spokesman Cllr Russell King said: “Our aim is to tackle some of the issues that affect the southern end of the high street. We plan to remove much of the unnecessary street clutter and guardrails that hem people in and obstruct them as they walk along this part of the high street.
“We are also looking to widen footpaths where we can and change the layouts of some bus stops and also move the taxi rank in a bid to free up road space and remove some of the high street’s pinch points where vehicles can be held up by buses and taxis.
“As well as reducing delays for other roads users the changes should also speed up journey times for bus passengers. Improving traffic flows and keeping cars, buses and lorries on the move should also have a positive impact on local air quality levels, which is something we are committed to improving.”
The plans include installing new pavements between Norroy Road and the Upper Richmond Road, removing unnecessary guardrails, widening the footway outside Putney Station and installing new cycle parking stands where space permits.
The works to improve footpaths outside Putney Station will be timed to coincide with a major upgrade to the station recently announced by Network Rail.
Pedestrians will also benefit from safety enhancements being installed at Norroy Road plus the widening of the high street pedestrian crossing near this junction.
Once these works have finished the carriageway between Norroy Road and the Upper Richmond Road will be resurfaced.
The council is working closely with Transport for London to improve air quality in Putney High Street.
As a direct result of lobbying by the town hall, TfL has replaced 46 buses that operate along the high street with new cleaner, greener buses, including ten hybrid models. It has also agreed to install advanced catalytic converters that significantly reduce emissions in a further 85 buses. These changes are due to be completed by March 2013.