One-way High Street included in Grantham town centre overhaul
Plans to create new cycle lanes and one-way roads will be introduced in Grantham after being given the go ahead by Lincolnshire County Council.
The local authority said the plans, which were consulted upon earlier this year, will go ahead after receiving broad public support.
The ‘Grantham active travel zone’ will include:
- Making High Street one-way with the creation of a ‘sustainable travel corridor’ allowing buses and cycles to progress southbound on High Street – towards St Peter’s Hill – but not other traffic. Northbound traffic heading towards Watergate would continue as is currently the case;
- At St Peter’s Hill the straight ahead lane will be removed from the west side – including along the frontage of Munch and Prezzo – and turned into a wider footway and area for outdoor retail/hospitality;
- St Peter’s Hill eastbound lane will be removed to continue the sustainable travel corridor – breaking into filter lanes opposite Belvoir estate agents;
- The closure of Guildhall Street at the junction of High Street, but deliveries will be allowed;
- Proposals to introduce a one-way system northbound on Westgate from the junction of Dysart Road to the junction of Conduit Lane were dropped and will not go ahead. These plans also included the removal of on-street parking from one side of the street on Westgate to provide an opportunity for increased outdoor trading and improved pedestrian and cycling space. However, an experimental traffic order may see the installation of temporary give way islands if traffic needs to be slowed further.
Councillor Richard Davies, executive member for highways and transport at Lincolnshire County Council, said the revamp of Grantham and those in other Lincolnshire towns also announced yesterday (Thursday) were to go ahead following public support.
He said: “We were clear when we launched this consultation that only those schemes with public support would get the go ahead. We’ve listened to what residents have told us and made amendments to schemes based on your feedback. We’ll start work as soon as we can to put in the changes that residents have told us they want to see.
“Where these schemes are being implemented, they will be temporary for up to 18 months. If they work for the community, we can make them permanent. And if they don’t, we can take them out again easily.
“Although they are temporary, we’re keen for no community to feel like they’ve just got roadworks happening for 18 months so we will use high quality infrastructure to implement these changes, such as traffic planters.”
Likely to cause concern among motorists is the move to make High Street one-way to traffic, in order to make a ‘sustainable travel corridor’ for buses and cyclists.
It will begin at the entrance to Watergate car park, and continue southbound on High Street and on to St Peter’s Hill, ending outside estate and lettings agents Belvoir Grantham, when cars can begin to filter into the right lane before the junction where London Road, St Catherine’s Road and Wharf Road meet.
This will essentially make High Street a one-way system which only heads northbound towards Watergate.
The plan will also see the lane of St Peter’s Hill closest to the Isaac Newton Shopping Centre entrance closed and pedestrianised, with northbound cars only having one lane to either continue on to High Street or turn right towards Avenue Road.
Lincolnshire County Council launched its consultation in March to ask residents’ views on eight county-wide schemes aiming to make walking and cycling easier in the county, using £799,900 funding from the Department for Transport’s Active Travel Fund.
Over 2,750 residents, businesses and organisations completed the consultation, which ended on May 16.
The Grantham active travel zone was fully supported by 48 per cent of the respondents, said the local authority, with 44 per cent not in support.
A Lincolnshire County Council spokesperson said: “48 per cent of respondents to the survey fully supported the proposed plans for Grantham.
“44 per cent did not support the plans, or did not support elements of it.
“It is from their feedback about which elements they did not think would work that we have amended the plans for Grantham town centre. Eight per cent of respondents said they didn’t know.”
Lance Merryweather, owner of the Teaspoon Tea Company on High Street, supports the plans.
He said: “As a business,we think it’s great that the council are doing whatever they can to generate more people in the town.
“As long as it brings more people into the town, it’s got to be a good thing.”
However, not so complimentary of the plans is Adam Lorne, director of Discount Cabs.
He said: “My opinion would be that [the plan] will make traffic worse.
“It won’t bring people into the town centre. There’s a limited number of shops that are there, plus [there’s the] building of the retail centre over at Gonerby Moor.
“The main thing for us would be the traffic. At certain times of the day, traffic is a nightmare as it is.
“It’s going to push all the traffic down to Westgate and down to the gyratory system around Great Northern Court, which, at the best of times, is mayhem.”
n Have your say. Do you think the revamp for Grantham town centre is good news? It is ambitious enough? Or will the plans make traffic problems worse?
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