The Healthy Streets Scorecard ranks London Boroughs on how healthy their streets are according to ten indicators.
Quick links to the 2023 data:
Previous data updates on select indicators.
Healthy Streets Scorecard detailed indicator results
2023 final scores & London-wide overview
City, Islington and Hackney top Healthy Streets Scorecard 2023. Hillingdon, Bexley and Havering named as lowest scoring councils
Top performing London Boroughs in the Healthy Streets Scorecard for 2023 are City, Islington, Hackney and Camden, with Southwark moving past Westminster to gain a Top 5 slot. Lurking at the bottom of the table are Hillingdon, Bexley and Havering with car-dominated environments failing to enable residents to switch to public transport, walking and cycling. Well known for its LTNs and cycle routes, award winning Waltham Forest leads the way in Outer London, scoring higher than some Inner London Boroughs. The worst performing Inner London boroughs are Kensington and Chelsea and Lewisham.
Five top boroughs given awards
This year, the coalition has given awards to five boroughs:
- Healthy Streets Scorecard overall winner: City of London – the London area with the highest overall Healthy Streets score leads the way on delivering schemes for walking, wheeling & cycling, as well as public transport, and reducing and restricting car use. It may have an inherent advantage on scores given its small number of residents, but its transport strategy is widely lauded as visionary and, importantly, the City’s actions often exceed their words – with schemes such as Bank Junction, Aldgate Square and the upcoming St Paul’s scheme.
- Top Inner London borough: Islington – progress on delivery may have slowed slightly from the start of the pandemic but Islington is the top-scoring Scorecard inner London borough for good reason, with high levels of delivery on 20mph, bus priority, LTNs, schools provision and controlled parking.
- Top Outer London borough: Waltham Forest – the north-east London borough is becoming famous, and has won several major awards, for delivering Healthy Streets schemes. It was one of three outer London boroughs awarded £30 million from the Mayor’s “mini-Holland” programme in 2013. Its schemes from that period are class-leading and continue to set a quality bar the rest of London struggles to match. And it has since gone on year after year to deliver more.
Some boroughs have scored higher (or lower) than we would expect given their housing density. The more densely populated boroughs have an advantage in the Scorecard so we now also publish data showing the actual scores boroughs achieve compared to the score they are predicted to achieve based on their housing density.
- Inner London Borough outscoring on housing density: Camden – Camden is a high-performing inner London borough on the Scorecard year after year, but it notably delivers beyond its expected score when adjusted for density compared to other inner London boroughs.
- Outer London borough outscoring on housing density: Richmond – Richmond is a relatively affluent and low-density outer London borough but far outperforms similar boroughs on delivery of Healthy Streets measures. Its delivery of 20mph speed limits on borough-controlled roads is particularly impressive.
The graph below shows the final factored scores for 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023, differentiating Inner and Outer London boroughs by colour. This helps show how boroughs are doing in relation to one another.
Note that for comparison the 2020 – 2023 factored scores include School Provision and 2023 factored scores include the bus priority indicator.
Scorecard (factored score) chart explained
In the chart above, each borough has been given a factored score. Factor scores are composite variables which provide information about a borough’s placement on a scale. Factor scores are given by F=XB, where X is the indicator normalised score for a borough and B is the factor score coefficient (or weight). Each indicator is weighted as 1, or 0.5 if there are two parts to one indicator, for example Modeshare has a weighting of 1, Active travel – walking has a weighting of 0.5 and Active travel – cycling has a weighting of 0.5. The borough’s total factored score is the sum of all indicator factored scores which is then factored to 10 (multiplied by the number of indicators/10) to give a value on the scale between zero and 10. We can then compare boroughs against each other on the scale.
New mapping for Scorecard 2023
The Healthy Streets Scorecard coalition continues to upgrade and develop new measures to improve the accuracy of its data and develop and introduce new scores every year. As a result, the Scorecard is now arguably the most advanced tool for measuring council progress on measures to reduce car use and enable alternatives to help London cut emissions and be healthier.
This year, the coalition has mapped Controlled Parking Zones in a move to improve data on that metric; and developed a new scoring system based partially on ‘opportunity to park’ with entire borough, or large, zones, allowing residents to park anywhere, scored lower than smaller zones based on a few streets.
The coalition also mapped the entire bus network to establish which boroughs have the most bus lanes or other ‘bus priority’ measures, providing faster journeys, and integrated this into the final borough scores this year.
Scores were once again adjusted for density to account for natural ‘bias’ where higher density areas score higher. This shows some councils you’d expect to score poorly score well, while some you’d expect to score very well (Kensington & Chelsea) score worse than expected.
The London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard sets out data showing the health of each borough’s streets according to a series of indicators. This year’s updated scores showed wide gaps on all indicators:
% of streets with Low Traffic Neighbourhood
% of schools with traffic-free School Streets
0% (Bexley, Hammersmith & Fulham)
School STARS (% of maximum possible points in promoting sustainable travel to school)
Controlled Parking Zone coverage final scores as %
20mph speed limits as % of borough managed roads
100% (Camden, City of London, Hackney, Islington, Kensington & Chelsea, Lambeth, Lewisham, Richmond, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Wandsworth, Westminster)
Cars registered per 100 households
% of polluting diesel cars
% of bus routes with bus priority (through bus lanes or modal filters)
NOTE: The City of London scores well in many indicators but it is not primarily a residential borough and it was felt that comparisons with the other London Boroughs may be unhelpful. So, while the City’s scores are set out in the data and graphs and reflected in the commentary for all Inner London, the commentary does not always reflect the results from the City for individual indicators.
Notable findings include:
- 20mph speed limits – postcode lottery for safe streets. Three London boroughs have less than 10% of appropriate streets covered by a 20mph speed limit (Barnet, Bromley, Hillingdon). In five others, less than a quarter of appropriate streets have a safe speed limit.
- Road casualties, 2022 target missed. London has seen a decline of 38% of fatal and serious road casualties since 2005-2009, but that misses the Mayor’s interim “Vision Zero” target of a 65% fall from the 2005-09 baseline by a long way. Worse, those rates miss the fact that pedestrians and motorcyclists have fared far worse than other modes, and that cyclist road casualties have actually risen by 39%.
- Car ownership – steadily falling in London. The latest data shows 2.45 million cars registered in London, a steady but slow downward trend from 2.47m and 2.51m in the two previous years.
- Polluting cars – some progress in Inner London. In Camden, diesel cars have reduced from 17% to 15% and a diesel surcharge was introduced on resident parking permits. The highest proportion of electric vehicles were in Camden, Westminster and Tower Hamlets at 15% and City of London and Newham at 14%.
- Parking controls – many councils are still not using the most important tool at their disposal to reduce car trips. Many boroughs now control parking on all streets. But Bromley, bottom of the table, controls parking on fewer than 10% of streets; ten boroughs control parking on fewer than a quarter of their streets; and Inner London borough Lewisham remains way below all other Inner London Boroughs with just 21% of streets covered.
- School Streets – good news for some children, bad news for others. Despite mass expansion of ‘School Streets’ (where cars can’t drive onto the street during pick-up and drop-off times) across London, Bexley and Hammersmith & Fulham have none at all. In nine other boroughs, fewer than 15% of schools benefit from a School Street. There is some good news for young people in Croydon and Havering which have both increased their scores by 12% and in Lewisham, Wandsworth and Ealing who continue to roll out School Streets at pace.
- The positive impact of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs) means boroughs are planning more. Despite what a minority of vocal opponents may say, LTNs are popular and bedding in well and boroughs are planning to introduce more in the coming year. This year Haringey made most progress, doubling the area covered to 34% of suitable roads. Hackney still tops the table at 69% with Waltham Forest and Islington next at 48% and 47%. Other high scoring boroughs are Newham, Southwark, Merton and Hounslow. Hammersmith and Fulham introduced ‘Clean Air Neighbourhoods’ which are like LTNs but allow local drivers through. The first schemes introduced have been effective at reducing external traffic, even on ‘boundary’ main roads (22% drop in traffic on the New Kings Road at Munster Road and a 17% drop on the Wandsworth Bridge Road south). We await further evidence on whether the schemes will continue to reduce local car trips and encourage active travel in the manner full LTNs do. Until then, they are awarded one third of the score full LTNs receive. Five boroughs have very low (under 10%) of their residential streets covered by an LTN: Bexley, Westminster, Bromley, Kingston and Kensington and Chelsea.
- Protected cycle track steadily increasing. The past year saw three times more new cycle track installed than 2022. Top of the list for rollout in the last year are Redbridge, Croydon, Lewisham and Ealing, though these boroughs still have a long way to go to match the top boroughs. The City still has the most cycle track per km of road. Waltham Forest, Enfield, Hounslow and Camden also top the list and continued to implement new schemes. Disappointingly, this year also saw the removal of some ‘temporary’ schemes implemented during the pandemic.
- Bus priority – some passengers much better off than others. Among Inner London boroughs, Hackney, Islington and Lambeth have 40% to 50% of routes prioritised for buses (with bus lanes or similar). At the other end of the scale, just 5% of bus routes have bus priority in Kensington & Chelsea. Among Outer London boroughs, Ealing, Barking and Dagenham, Merton, Waltham Forest, Hounslow, Brent and Greenwich score well with between 10-20% priority. But many boroughs have little or no priority for buses: Bexley, Bromley, Redbridge, Barnet and Sutton are all under 5%.
- Modeshare and Active Travel Rates – data not available this year
Indicator index (normalised score) chart explained
In the chart above, each of the ten indicator scores have been normalised to adjust the values measured on different scales to a common scale. The borough with the lowest score in the data range is given the value 0, and the borough with the highest score in the data range is given the value 1.
Note that a borough that has a normalised value of 1 has not achieved 100% of the indicator target, rather a value of 1 means that the borough has the highest score when compared to all 32 boroughs. (View the actual input and outcome indicator data). We can then compare boroughs and where they sit on a scale of zero to one.
Housing density weighting
Housing density correlates closely to Scorecard score – boroughs with higher housing density tend to be more central, have more public transport, lower car ownership etc. In 2022, and again this year, we’ve looked at the score housing density would predict a borough would get versus the actual score they got on the Scorecard. In our view, this makes for very interesting reading.
For instance, the borough that scored worst on its housing density predicted score versus its actual score was Kensington & Chelsea, followed by Bexley and Redbridge – all boroughs that have done little to nothing for decades to deliver ‘Healthy Streets’ measures. Redbridge now does appear to be starting to try and deliver schemes – so we hope this shifts for them in following years. But for the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea, it’s quite startling to see once again a wealthy, central London borough with such dense public transport provision that appears to care so little for the health, safety or sustainability of its residents – so little, indeed, that it’s actual score got worse this year compared to its predicted score.
At the opposite end, for those outperforming their expected score based on density, City of London tops the league (fairly obviously, this is because of its relative lack of housing, but high density of amenities, public transport links etc.). City is followed by Richmond and Waltham Forest. The latter particularly being famous for its delivery of Healthy Streets schemes following its mini-Holland programme and beyond.
Isolating scores just for ‘input’ metrics, Merton joins City and Waltham Forest in outperforming delivery of Healthy Streets schemes, while for outcomes (such as serious collisions, car ownership levels and regular walking and cycling rates) it’s Camden that joins top two City and Richmond. Merton is likely the surprise here – but it has rolled out 20mph across the entire borough, now covers nearly half the borough in Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs) and is doing similarly well on School Streets provision.
Find your borough’s results homepage:
Review detailed results for the four outcome indicators:
Review detailed results for the six input indicators:
Download the London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard (2023) indicator charts and summary
Download the London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard (2023) indicators data
Download the London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard (2022) presentation
Download LIP3 (third local implementation plan) MTS (Mayor of London’s Transport Strategy) outcomes borough data pack (September 2019)