MSQ Partners agency Stack has taken matters into its own hands following a spate of accidents since London’s Tottenham Court Road changed from being a one-way street into a two-way road, with the launch of a new ad campaign urging pedestrians to “Look Both Ways”.
Since the Sixties, traffic has been restricted to one way northbound along Tottenham Court Road but from April this year buses have been running in both directions as part of a £35m project by Camden Council to transform the area.
Just this week, a pedestrian was seriously injured after being struck by a southbound bus, the third such collision since the street was converted to two-way traffic. In June, there were two collisions involving a bus and a pedestrian at the same spot.
The Fitzrovia Neighbourhood Association has called on Camden Council and Transport for London to implement a 10mph speed limit to improve safety on the busy shopping street. But in the meantime, Stack – whose offices are based on the road – has created a new campaign which will run through outdoor, social and experiential channels.
The activity features people who work in businesses all along the street – from the pub landlords to shop staff, coffee shop baristas to personal trainers – and each image shows them simultaneously looking both ways across the street.
Sister MSQ Partners agency The Gate has provided media support, securing prominent sites along Tottenham Court Road, including the 48-sheet digital displays by Goodge Street station – the scene of one of the most severe accidents so far.
Business development service The Fitzrovia Partnership is backing the campaign.
Stack executive creative director Iain Hunter said: “We felt that the initial warning signage created by the Council was too low level and wouldn’t stand out on a street as vibrant and colourful as Tottenham Court Road. So when accidents started to happen, we took matters into our own hands. The [local] community has welcomed our campaign with open arms, agreeing to run the ads in their place of business and even feature in them too.”
Stack chief executive Ben Stephens added: “It only takes a moment of forgetfulness to change a life forever. Tottenham Court Road has run in one direction for many years and people slip into bad habits. This is about a community coming together to protect their own.”
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