Forest Road

In 2016, initial improvement works started on the section of Forest Road near to the boundary with Haringey, to support the opening of Walthamstow Wetlands. Works included a new pedestrian and cycle crossing and a first section of segregated cycle track linking to the border with Haringey. Over the following three years, the sections of Forest Road between Blackhorse Station and Bell Junction (Hoe Street) were upgraded to provide improved infrastructure for active and sustainable travel. Between 2020 and 2022 further major junction improvements took place at Blackhorse Road and Bell junctions, and a final permanent scheme was put in place through the reservoirs.

Building on the TfL London Streetspace Plan (LSP)

In 2020, Transport for London’s (TfL) London Streetscape Plan (LSP) provided further funding to deliver walking and cycling improvements on Forest Road between Hoe Street and Woodford New Road. During the COVID-19 pandemic, London’s public transport capacity was reduced and it was anticipated that if these journeys were replaced by car journeys, streets would become heavily congested. Therefore LSP funding was created to boost walking and cycling, and reduce pressure on the road and public transport network.

The LSP funding allowed Waltham Forest to implement an interim scheme between Hoe Street and Woodford New Road, creating a virtually continuous end-to-end route, stretching from Haringey to Redbridge. The interim scheme adopted a low-cost approach, with minimal highway layout and traffic signal junction changes.

While the interim scheme has delivered some benefits, the aim has always been to develop and deliver a high-quality set of permanent improvements in the eastern section of Forest Road between Hoe Street and Woodford New Road. We have been using feedback from the community on the interim scheme along with a range of traffic and highways data to shape our permanent plans for this final section of Forest Road.

Hoe Street to Woodford New Road - November 2023 Update

In July 2023 we carried out a public consultation with the local community on our plans for Forest Road between Hoe Street and Woodford New Road. The plans aim to build upon the temporary scheme introduced in 2020 and connect with previously completed sections of Forest Road, transforming it into a route that helps people walk, cycle, access public transport and feel better connected to the surrounding community, amenities and services.

Thank you to everyone who took part in the consultation and provided feedback on the proposals. All the comments have been considered and have allowed us to develop a final scheme that will benefit the local community as well as visitors to the area, and will support and enable the current redevelopment and
regeneration taking place.

The update leaflet delivered to residents on 17 November 2023 outlines the results of the public consultation, the final scheme plan, and next steps for construction. The full update leaflet and the public consultation report can be viewed in the useful documents pane on the right hand side of this page.

Next steps

As this is a long section of road and represents a significant investment for the Council, the scheme will be delivered and constructed in phases and will take two to three years to complete. To minimise disruption, we need to co-ordinate the construction with other schemes and major developments taking place in the area, therefore we will start to make improvements from summer 2024.

We will write to everyone in the scheme area in spring 2024 with an updated scheme map of the route along with more information on the construction phases.

Previous consultation and engagement

Public consultations for the Forest Road scheme took place between the following dates. Click the links below or to the right to download the consultation reports.

Completed work

Ferry Lane to Forest Road – work completed in 2017

  • Fully segregated cycle lane from the borough boundary with Haringey to Forest Road just past the Ferry Boat Inn
  • New Toucan Crossing at the entrance to the Walthamstow Wetlands entrance
  • Public space improvements outside the wetlands
  • Road resurfacing
  • Reduced speed limit along the road from 30 to 20 mph.

Blackhorse Road Junction to Palmerston Road – work completed 2018 Cyclist in a cycle lane on Forest Road

  • Fully segregated cycle lane on both sides of the road
  • New signal controlled pedestrian and cycle crossing point by Pretoria Avenue
  • New blended ‘Copenhagen’ crossings on all side roads open to motor vehicles to prioritise pedestrians
  • Reduced speed limit along the full road from 30 to 20 mph.

Palmerston Road to Hoe Street – work completed in late 2018 Forest Road cycle lane outside William Morris Gallery

  • New cycle and pedestrian crossing to the east of Bemsted Road and Greenleaf Road
  • Segregated cycle lanes on both sides of the road
  • New blended ‘Copenhagen’ crossings on all side roads open to motor vehicles to prioritise pedestrians
  • Reduced speed limit along the full road from 30 to 20 mph.

Blackhorse Junction - work completed in summer 2020

Artist impression of new road layout outside Blackhorse Road station

  • New cycle and pedestrian crossings
  • Bus stop changes
  • Improved public space
  • More cycle parking
  • Upgraded traffic signals.

Forest Road Reservoirs (between Ferry Lane and Green Ferry Way) - work completed 2021

  • Fully segregated cycle tracks on both sides of the road to provide a dedicated space for people to cycle on, separated from the road and pavement
  • Improvements to the existing pedestrian and cycle crossing to provide a safer place for people to cross the road between the two entrances to the Wetlands and the Ferry Boat Inn
  • Plants and greenery along the route to act as a barrier between the cycle lane and pavement and to improve the look and feel of the area
  • New paving materials to improve the overall street environment and tie in to the recently completed pedestrian and cycle improvements on Ferry Lane and the housing developments by Blackhorse Road Tube and Rail Station
  • New ‘Walthamstow Wetlands’ wayfinding along the boundaries on Forest Road
  • New CCTV cameras to improve personal safety
  • New Cycle Hubs adjacent to Blackhorse Road Station to make cycling to the station more convenient
  • The safety cameras maintained to keep speeds to 30mph and to ensure overall road safety.

Bell Junction to Woodford New Road, London Streetspace (LSP)

  • Introduce a mix of mandatory cycle lanes, semisegregated
    cycle tracks and stepped cycle tracks in each direction along Forest Road. Mandatory cycle lanes are created using a solid white line along the road to mark out the cycle lane, semi-segregated cycle tracks are created using materials called wands (vertical plastic poles) which provide a physical barrier between the cycle lane and the road, stepped cycle tracks are cycle lanes which are higher than the carriageway but lower than the pavement.
  • Change bus stop layouts such as introducing bus stop bypasses, where space allows, to ensure that cyclists can cycle around bus stops safely and keep separated from bus passengers getting on and off buses.
  • Where mandatory cycle lanes and semi segregated cycle tracks are being installed, kerbside parking, waiting and loading restrictions will generally change to No Waiting and Loading “At Any Time”
  • Outside of the businesses between Spruce Hill Road and Wood Street, double yellow lines will be installed but loading will generally be allowed as per the current times.
  • Additional loading bays will be installed in St Johns Road and Kingsley Road.
  • Existing parking bays between Hale End Road and Beacontree Road will be unaffected.

Bell Junction 

  • Change the road layout at the junction to make more space available for pedestrians and cyclists, whilst also maintaining the current flow of traffic and bus journey times.
  • Increase pavement widths around the junction, particularly outside One Hoe Street, to allow more space for pedestrians and cyclists and provide greater potential for tree planting and public realm improvements. By widening the pavements we will shorten the crossing distance of pedestrian crossings on all arms of the junction – making crossing the road safer, quicker and more convenient.
  • Introduce new segregated cycle tracks which create separate, designated space for cycling and new cycle crossing points on all arms of the junction to improve cycle safety and make crossing the junction by bike easier.
  • Install new traffic signals, including low level traffic signals for cyclist.
    Link the current and planned cycle lanes on Forest Road into future proposals for Hoe Street to provide continuous protected space for cycling.
  • Upgrade and modernise the street lighting to make the junction feel safer at night.
  • Resurface the footways using materials that create a high quality look and feel, and that complement the material used elsewhere in the town centre.
  • Plant new trees and a variety of plants to complement the existing species in the area, increase biodiversity and improve air quality.

Forest Road, between Blackhorse Junction and Walthamstow Wetlands (boundary with London Borough of Haringey)

  • Introduction of mandatory cycle lanes with light segregation infrastructure including Orcas and Wands, providing a largely uninterrupted fully segregated cycle route from Hoe Street to the borough boundary.


If you have any questions relating to the Enjoy Waltham Forest programme, do get in touch.

Email - enjoy@walthamforest.gov.uk

Write to -
Enjoy Waltham Forest Programme Team
Waltham Forest Council
Low Hall Argall Avenue
E10 7AS