The Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Accident Outside of London’s V&A Prompts Its Director to Call for Full Pedestrianization of Exhibition Road

Martin Bailey of the Art Newspaper writes that Tristram Hunt, the director of London’s Victoria and Albert Museum, has called for the full pedestrianization of Exhibition Road, a thoroughfare that connects a number of major museums in the city’s South Kensington neighborhood. In what was originally thought to be a terrorist attack, a car swerved and injured eleven people walking through the street right outside the museum on the afternoon of Saturday, October 7. The driver was arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving, but released a day later. It is not clear what caused the accident.

In 2012, Exhibition Road was only partly refurbished and became a shared space for automobile and pedestrian traffic. Partly because of pressure from local residents who did not want to lose their parking spaces, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea had decided against a total pedestrianization of the road. On October 6, just a day before the crash, Hunt participated in a talk put together by Frieze Academy requesting that the road be fully rehabbed for the safety of museum visitors. Since the incident, the Road Cultural Group, which includes the Imperial College London and several museums, has demanded that a solution to the problem be formulated as soon as possible.