Elephant and Castle layout change causes traffic upheaval during the first morning rush hour since two-way roads were introduced

 
Catherine Neilan
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It's not getting any better (Source: (Source: Lizzy Orton/Twitter))

The first working day of Elephant & Castle's new layout is hardly what you could call a success.

From yesterday, the busy junction switched from dual roundabouts - infamous for the number of collisions and traffic jams it caused - to a two-way road for the first time in 50 years. The plan is designed to make the busy hub safer for all road users, particularly pedestrians and cyclists, and break up the gridlock.

Commuters have complained of travelling just 200 metres in 20 minutes, while others have warned that both cyclists and pedestrians are less safe than ever.

Congestion has got so bad that Transport for London is accepting bus tickets on the Tube in zones one and two "due to serious delays" in the area. It warned that traffic was delayed by 25-30 minutes because of "ongoing roadworks".

Passengers caught in the chaos have warned others to "avoid Elephant and Castle at all costs".

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Elephant & Castle is part-way through a £25m upgrade, which will also include new pedestrian crossings and a dedicated cycle path - though these won't be introduced until next year.

Last week the junction created a "human busipede", with major jams bringing traffic to a standstill even outside of rush hour.