Transport for London has unveiled its plans to improve accessibility on the London Underground tube stations and buses by implementing station ramps, more dedicated wheelchair and buggy spaces, and a specific moquette design to better highlight priority seats.
These plans are part of the over 80 upgrades that TfL intend to make in order for its tube and bus network more accessible. Many of the changes are to be implemented this year, with the rest to be completed by 2030, subject to government funding.
Mini ramps over the gaps between station platforms and trains will be installed in certain stations in a bid to increase TfL’s step-free tube stations from a third up to half as part of their ‘Equity in Motion’ plan announced this morning (Friday). On the Bakerloo, Central, and Waterloo and City trains more dedicated wheelchair and buggy spaces will be created.
On the bus front, TfL plans to install specific moquette fabric patterns to better indicate priority seats for the elderly, disabled, and pregnant on 1,000 Routemaster buses.
Mayor Sadiq Khan said: “London is for everyone and I am committed to making our transport network as fair and accessible as possible so that every Londoner can make the most of our fantastic city.
“TfL is committed to removing the barriers that people face when using the transport network and enabling more people to travel spontaneously, seamlessly and easily. Some of these vital improvements are already underway and there are many more to come, helping us to continue building a better, fairer London for everyone.”
Equity in Motion goes beyond physical upgrades to TfL’s tube and bus network, the initiative aims to create an environment where all groups can feel included, seen and understood. To do this, disability equality training for frontline staff is to be put in place as well as research into the needs of different groups in London including LGBTQ+ people.
Chief customer and strategy officer at TfL, Alex Williams, commented: “Our vision is a London where everyone can move around the city safely, inclusively and sustainably, and access to public transport is a fundamental component in making this happen.
“While we have taken steps to make our network more accessible, we know that much more needs to be done. Equity in Motion draws on the experiences and viewpoints of a range of Londoners, prioritising the areas they want to see improved to create tangible actions that drive forward change and help make London a truly fair city.
“TfL has already begun work on many of the plan’s longer-term actions, including improving HGV safety standards, launching new cycle lanes and reducing road danger across London. Other longer-term actions include making further improvements to toilets across the network.”
To read more about TfL’s 2024 Budget and Business Plan, head here.