Arup Associates’ 11-year-old Vauxhall bus station has been given a stay of execution after Transport for London (TfL) delayed a final decision until after May’s elections for London mayor.
The transport body said this week that it would publish a new report into the future of the Vauxhall gyratory system later this year - a move which could save the £4.5 million ‘ski-jump’ building from demolition.
The decision follows a backlash against proposals to remove the 2005 bus station and gyratory and replace them with a ‘safer’ two-way flow of traffic (see MP slams plans to demolish Arup Associates’ Vauxhall bus station).
A TfL report into the consultation stated: ‘The recent consultation has been an extremely valuable exercise in understanding views on our proposals for Vauxhall, and has demonstrated the high level of interest in the project.
‘We will now spend time reviewing and considering all points raised in the consultation and will publish a second report later in the year, in which we will set out our response to issues that were commonly raised in the consultation , and explain the next steps for the project.’
TfL revealed that 96 out of 2017 respondents who commented about the proposed changes ‘believed the bus station was iconic and disagreed with its removal’.
Opponents had argued that changes to bus stop locations would make life more difficult for bus users, and the lack of shelter would reduce the current protection from rain.
In its response to the consultation, London Borough of Wandsworth said it had ‘some reservations about what is proposed and the quantity and quality of the supporting evidence provided’.
It added: ‘TfL will be aware that, in Wandsworth’s town centres , a more dispersed approach to bus stopping and standing arrangements has its problems in terms of over-bussing of stops and stands, confusion for bus passengers, pavement conflicts between waiting passengers and passing pedestrians, and idling buses.’
A statement released on behalf of the Vauxhall Civic Society welcomed the lifting of any immediate threat to the Arup structure.
It said: ‘We welcome TfL’s belated recognition that the issues around the Vauxhall gyratory and especially the bus station are too important to be rushed through.
‘Sustained local campaigning has shown that people want to keep the bus station and TfL has not proved that it must be demolished to achieve their objective of two-way traffic.’