Results: outcome indicators

The Healthy Streets Scorecard ranks London Boroughs on how healthy their streets are according to nine indicators (four ‘outcome’ and five ‘input’ indicators). By combining the indicator scores, each borough is given a final Healthy Streets score.

This page sets out detailed results for the outcome indicators:

1. Sustainable Modeshare

2. Active Travel Rate (A) Walking (B) Cycling

3. Road Collision Casualties

4. Car Ownership Rates (A) Cars per household (B) Households with no car

1. Sustainable Modeshare

‘Sustainable modeshare’ is the proportion (or share) of trips made by ‘sustainable mode of transport’ i.e. walking cycling or public transport. This is for trips made by borough residents, rather than for all trips made in and through the borough. The target in the Mayor’s Transport Strategy is to increase sustainable modeshare from 63% to 80% by 2041. Between 2019 and 2020 it increased from 64% to 65%.

Hackney is the first borough (apart from City of London) to approach 90% sustainable modeshare, increasing from 85% to 88% this year. Camden and Westminster are close behind this year at 85% and 83% respectively. But just 41% of journeys in Hillingdon are made by sustainable modes.

While it’s good news that most boroughs have seen a slight increase (kudos to Kingston Upon Thames and Lewisham for getting 4 percent rises), in a climate crisis, with the Mayor’s Transport Strategy pushing for huge reductions in motor vehicle use, this simply isn’t fast enough. More, nine boroughs flatlined on sustainable mode share including Barking & Dagenham, Barnet, Bexley, City, Croydon, Enfield, Hillingdon, Lambeth and Tower Hamlets. And sustainable mode share has actually reduced in Bromley, Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Harrow, Havering and Islington. From these, recent action by the City, Croydon, Ealing, Enfield, Hammersmith & Fulham and Lambeth as well as Islington should, we hope, reverse this decline. And hopefully this will be a wake-up call for the others. But all boroughs need to be far bolder on these results.

The graph below shows Inner and Outer London boroughs to help show how boroughs are doing compared to other Inner or Outer boroughs.

2. Active Travel Rate

The proportion of people who regularly walk or cycle (over five times weekly) is a strong indicator of healthy outcomes and of streets healthy enough to enable those outcomes. On running this indicator for the second year, we saw large fluctuations and it is possible the sample size of the survey used is causing this. So this year we have shifted to using the last two years’ data averaged and have done this retrospectively for last year’s data for comparison too – so data is for 2015-17 versus 2016-18.

Walking

Unsurprisingly, most residents walk regularly in central London – with over half of City residents walking five times a week, and nearly half of Westminster residents. What’s shocking is that in eight boroughs, less than one third of residents were walking five times a week prior to this crisis. In order of lowest proportion that’s Barking & Dagenham, Barnet, Enfield, Hounslow, Harrow, Redbridge, Brent and Sutton. Only ten boroughs saw more than 40% of residents walking five times a week (and, credit where it’s due, two of these were Richmond and Waltham Forest in Outer London).

Some boroughs saw drops in walking rates, including Greenwich, Hackney and Hammersmith & Fulham, but these were from higher rates, and may be just the fluctuation of the survey.

The graph below shows Inner and Outer London boroughs differentiated by colour (light blue = Inner London, dark blue = Outer London). This graph helps show how boroughs are doing compared to other Inner or Outer boroughs.

Cycling

The overall trend is a 0.1% change in regular cyclists year on year across London. That’s nowhere near enough of a shift given the climate, air quality and inactivity crises we face.

It is only in Southwark and Hackney that over 10% of residents cycle five times a week, while less than 2% of residents cycle frequently in Sutton, Havering, Harrow, City (we can ignore this due to such small numbers of residents), Barking & Dagenham, Redbridge, Barnet and Bexley.

Hopefully, rapid action over the Covid-19 crisis and the ongoing action in the most progressive boroughs such as the City, Hackney, Lambeth and Waltham Forest, will see these figures shift more in the next update but urgent action is clearly needed across the board to deliver meaningful change.

Hammersmith & Fulham, Redbridge, Sutton and Tower Hamlets saw a drop in regular cyclists, and Brent, Hounslow, Lambeth, Newham and Westminster a rise, but again, these may be just survey fluctuations.

The graph below shows Inner and Outer London boroughs differentiated by colour (light blue = Inner London, dark blue = Outer London). This graph helps show how boroughs are doing compared to other Inner or Outer boroughs.

3. Road Collision Casualties

Rates of serious or fatal pedestrian and cyclist casualties (Killed or Seriously Injured or KSI) per 100,000 walking and cycling trips give a measure of the risk to those walking and cycling in a borough.

We use a three-year average for this indicator. Last year’s 2019 Scorecard used the data on KSIs for pedestrians and cyclists from 2015-2017. This year’s 2020 Scorecard used data from 2016-2018.

There was a change in reporting of serious injuries which happened nationally across police forces, as well as in London, from 2016, which led to a rise in the number of recorded serious injuries. So, despite 2018 being the lowest year on record in terms of fatalities (112 across all modes of transport), this year’s scorecard indicates an overall 26% increase in KSIs (for pedestrians and cyclists) between 2019 and 2020 Scorecard data.

In the new system, injuries are automatically given a severity rating, eliminating inaccuracies arising from officers making their own judgement. The new severity level data is expected to be more accurate and in fact has resulted in the increase in reported KSIs seen in the London data.

The highest borough road casualty rate for pedestrians and cyclists was more than double the lowest rate (13 per 100,000 journey stages in Hackney compared to 5 in Croydon and Greenwich)

Boroughs with high KSI rates for pedestrians and cyclists are Hackney, Barking and Dagenham, Tower Hamlets and Kensington and Chelsea. Of all the Inner London boroughs, walking and cycling appears safest in Greenwich, followed by two Outer London boroughs, Merton and Croydon. This remains consistent with last year’s results.

The majority of boroughs saw a circa 25% increase in KSIs per journey stage, in line with the new serious injury reporting methods. However, notable exceptions were Barking and Dagenham (where KSIs increased by 63%, significantly more than other boroughs), Wandsworth (49%), Redbridge (49%) and Ealing (41%).

Some boroughs with high walking and cycling rates also have high pedestrian and cyclist casualties per 100,000 journey stages. This study does not extend to explaining why this may be. But it seems that in many boroughs where much has been done to boost walking and cycling rates, more now needs to be done to reduce danger and boroughs will need to consider where, how and why such high numbers of collisions are happening. For example, as was the case last year, a notable result was that Hackney has high walking and cycling rates but also high KSI rates for pedestrians and cyclists, even when taking into account the fact that more people are walking and cycling.

The graph below shows Inner and Outer London boroughs differentiated by grouping. This graph helps show how boroughs are doing compared to other Inner or Outer boroughs.

4. Car Ownership Rates

There are 2,661,026 cars in London. The Mayor’s target for car ownership is for there to be 250,000 fewer cars registered in London by 2041. That equates to 12,500 fewer cars each year for 20 years. But our data shows just 168 fewer cars registered in London, comparing the 2019 and 2020 data.

TfL’s Streetspace for London Covid19 crisis plans include by-borough assessments of who owns and uses a car and the risk of increased car use. Surveys indicate that a third of UK residents are likely to increase their car-use post crisis. We don’t know yet how car ownership and use will play out in London as the crisis passes, but London boroughs will need to do a lot more, rapidly, to enable their residents to live car-free lives to avoid major rises in congestion and the resulting impacts.

Last year we used data for the average number of cars registered per household to create a score for ‘car ownership’ for each borough. This year we have used both ‘average number of cars per household’ AND ‘proportion of households with no car’. Boroughs score better if (a) they have a lower average number of cars per household and (b) they have a higher proportion of households with no car. (See below for an explanation of the interplay between the two indicators.)

Cars per household

The number of cars registered in London has remained more or less the same. But the number of households in London has increased, so the average number of cars has decreased slightly from 76 to 75 cars per 100 households. (In 2018 London had 3,513,589 households and there were 2,661,194 cars registered. In 2019 there were 3,544,727 households and 2,661,026 cars registered.)

There are very significant differences in car ownership levels between boroughs. Islington has the lowest level with just 35 cars registered for every 100 households and Tower Hamlets and Hackney close behind with just 36. At the other end of the scale, Hillingdon has the highest level with 127 cars registered for every 100 households, five other boroughs have more than 100 cars for every 100 households (Bromley, Sutton, Bexley, Havering, Harrow). Sixteen London boroughs (roughly half) have over 80 cars registered per 100 households.

No borough showed a major change in cars per household but most boroughs showed a small drop. The borough with the biggest drop was Merton (dropped from 90 to 87 cars per 100 households). Most other boroughs, both in Inner and Outer London showed a small drop but there was an increase in the average number of cars per household in City of London, Hammersmith & Fulham and Westminster.

The graph below shows Inner and Outer London boroughs differentiated by colour (light blue = Inner London, dark blue = Outer London). This graph helps show how boroughs are doing compared to other Inner or Outer boroughs.

Proportion of households with no car

This year we also obtained up-to-date data on the proportion of households in each borough with no car. Nearly half of all London households don’t have a car (45%).

Given that cars are expensive to own and run and that parking for privately owned cars takes up a huge amount of space, and given the obvious fact that more car ownership means more car journeys – there is a real need for boroughs and the Mayor alike to enable more people to live without cars.

Islington and Westminster have the highest proportion of households with no car (71%) closely followed by Tower Hamlets and Hackney (70%) and Camden (69%). At the other end of the scale, just 23% of households in Havering, Bromley and Sutton don’t have a car.

The borough with the biggest increase in the proportion of households with no car was Wandsworth which moved from 47% to 50%. In Havering, Bexley and Bromley, however, there was a small decrease in number of households with no car.

The graph below shows Inner and Outer London boroughs differentiated by colour (light blue = Inner London, dark blue = Outer London). This helps show how boroughs are doing compared to other Inner or Outer boroughs.

The interplay between the ‘Cars per household’ data and ‘Percentage of no-car households’ data

Looking at the two indicators together tells us how many cars on average each car-owning household has. At one end of the scale, the car-owning households in Southwark (where only 43% of households have a car) have, on average, one car per household. At the other end of the scale, the car-owning households in Hillingdon (where 76% of households have a car) have on average 1.7 cars per household.

The two indicators correlate to some extent i.e. the higher the proportion of car-owning households, the more cars each of those households owns, on average. There are exceptions like Ealing, however, where the car owning households have a higher-than-expected number of cars per household.