Some of you will have read a report in the advertiser-led online press that informs us of the continued road chaos around the seven stars area thanks to the Thames Water work on pipes. Having once again endured this on the 266 down towards Hammersmith this morning I can personally attest to the continued woe they are causing. Especially when cars block the bus routes which seems to happen all the time.
But what the advertiser-led press didn't take the time to do was to report what the Council were saying about what was going on, which was in my humble opinion another example of pretty poor journalism.
So I wrote to my favourite councillor Nick Botterill, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for the Environment, and asked him. I have a high esteem for Cllr Botterill as he actually gets things done - he was after all the saviour of Shepherd's Bush Green from the cowboys that dug it up and left it in a right old state.
Here's the update he gave me, which on the face of it pins the blame squarely where it should be - on a public utility that doesn't seem to care much about digging up roads because there is no sanction against them for doing so. There should be.
The Council says:
The water giant began replacing Victorian pipes at the Sevens Stars corner on Goldhawk Road, Askew Road and Paddenswick Road in January.
This has led to serious traffic chaos, with a diversion in place via Uxbridge Road and Askew Road.
And now, to the dismay of residents, motorists and council officials, Thames Water bureaucrats say the work will go on until Sunday March 28 - two weeks longer than expected.
Thames Water say that the newly laid main failed a pressure test, effectively admitting that it has been laid incorrectly. They also state that they have uncovered a structure underneath the road, possibly a sewer, that there are inadequate records for.
Cllr Nick Botterill, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, said: "I am appalled that Thames Water's ineptitude has meant that completing this work has been delayed. You would have thought that they are experts at replacing pipes - apparently not. Once again, it is residents and motorists who will be forced to bear the brunt of these Thames Water mistakes. I urge Thames Water to do everything they can to finish this work off as a matter of urgency."
Unfortunately, due to these unforeseen difficulties, by law the council has no choice but to grant an extension to Thames Water.
Goldhawk Road will remain closed to westbound traffic at Goldhawk Road junction Brading Terrace, and remain open as usual for eastbound traffic, with only the junction with Greenside Road closed. All other side streets between Shepherd's Bush Green and Brading Terrace will be open to traffic. Temporary traffic lights at the roundabouts will keep traffic flowing as smoothly as possible. Coningham Road will remain open one-way northbound, and the 94 and 237 buses will use this route, so that services carry on running during the works.