Barrow Gurney traffic scheme thrown out

Barrow Gurney traffic scheme thrown out

A CONTROVERSIAL scheme to improve traffic congestion in Barrow Gurney has been thrown out after residents and commuters opposed the plans.

Traffic congestion is a huge problem for villagers in Barrow Gurney and North Somerset Council was considering introducing a footpath and traffic lights in Barrow Street to control vehicles travelling through the centre and to enable passengers to walk more safely through the village.

There is currently not enough space along Barrow Street for two cars and a pedestrian to pass safely and on part of the carriageway there is currently no pavement.

The council hoped the scheme would encourage motorists to use alternative routes such as the A3029 or the B3133.

However, during a consultation on the scheme, 61 per cent of villagers said they were opposed to the plans as did 76 per cent of commuters.

Seventy per cent of respondents said the scheme would not deter them from driving through Barrow Gurney, while 55 per cent of commuters said they would use small lanes such as Wild Country Lane as alternative routes if they chose to avoid the traffic lights.

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Cllr Elfan Ap Rees, executive member for highways, said: “The results from the public consultation show that while there was some support for the scheme the majority of those who responded were not in favour of it.

“This included a majority of local village residents and neighbouring parish councils, concerned that traffic would simply divert through equally narrow and more dangerous routes.

“In particular, concerns were raised about what was being suggested as a traffic light trial would cost in the region of �30,000.”

Cllr Ap Rees added that there are no easy solutions to the problems of traffic and pedestrian provision in Barrow Gurney.

He said: “Our engineers are unable to widen the existing road without taking private property and affecting the appearance of the village.

“There is not enough existing road space to construct a standard footway without preventing deliveries and waste collections to local properties.

“The conclusion is that the present system is the best that can be achieved and instead we should concentrate our efforts on securing the South Bristol Link, which would benefit all the villages in the area.”