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Birchwood Way consultation

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http://www.warrington.gov.uk/info/200352/consultation/1784/birchwood_pinchpoint_scheme

 

The council has secured Growth Deal funding from the government and the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership to deliver a series of transport improvements along the A574 Birchwood Way corridor in Birchwood.

 

We are proposing to deliver junction improvements at Oakwood Gate “The dog bone” and Moss Gate roundabouts and provide a new bus only link between Ordnance Avenue and Faraday Street.

These transport improvements have been proposed to reduce the high levels of congestion at these junctions, improve journey times along the A574 corridor, and improve bus journey times to the Birchwood Park area.

 

We would like to know what you think of the proposed improvements and you can do this by completing the: Birchwood pinchpoint scheme online questionnaire

To help you complete the questionnaire, the Birchwood pinchpoint scheme leaflet [pdf] provides an overarching view of the proposals. If you require further information and a thorough breakdown check out the proposals for the Birchwood pinch point project in full.

 

Alternatively you can attend one of the drop-in consultation events planned in September where you can speak to the scheme designers and view the proposals in more detail.

 

Consultation events have been organised at:

 

Birchwood Shopping Centre, near ASDA 
- Thursday 11 September between 12 noon and 7pm 
- Saturday 13 September between 12 noon and 2pm

 

The Centre, Birchwood Business Park 
Thursday 18 September between 11:30am and 6pm 
- Tuesday 23 September between 11.30am and 6pm

 

If you would like a paper copy of the form and the proposals leaflet, please visit Contact Warrington on Horsemarket Street, visit one of the drop-in events or send us your comments in writing to:

Email: LTP@warrington.gov.uk

 

Post:   Birchwood Pinchpoint, 
Transport Planning and Development Control, 
Freepost RTJE-KZXJ-TSEG 
Warrington Borough Council, 
3rd Floor New Town House, 
Buttermarket Street, Warrington, WA1 2NH.

The consultation will last for four weeks and the closing date for comments is Monday 6 October 2014.

 

This work has been required for years, and should improve journey times (including mine) to Birchwood Park and other surrounding areas.  There's certainly the room to widen the roads, and it's great they're also planning to improve the cycle/pedestrian routes at the same time.

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Lights, Lights and more lights? Birchwood Way was designed originally to be a full dual carriage way from the motorway with flyovers (hence the dog bone roundabout shape) Adding lights has not yet improved any location in Warrington in recent years. Westbrook is a classic example as is Cockhedge roundabout. 

 

The dog bone needs a flyover as originally planned, that will take all through traffic off it and then assist traffic going into birchwood. Continued dualling (again as originally planned) should continue up to the motorway. 

 

All this is, is a cheap patch up. 

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The main problem of the Birchwood Way pinch points are the fact that there are only two exits form the entire Birchwood area, and these both feed onto the A574.

As the Birchwood area continues to develop, the amount of traffic trying to use these two exits will only increase. The current traffic chaos will not only discourage further development in the Birchwood area, but may also drive away existing jobs.

When the development of Birchwood was first started the planners believed that the need for personnel transport would be reducing and they did not allow for the today’s levels of traffic. People are having to travel greater distances to get to work and the improvement to bus access routes and cycles lanes will do little to reduce the current amount of road traffic, let alone any possible increase. Evidence for this is the amount of road traffic that uses Junction 19 of the M6, and Junction 11 from the M62 and travels into Birchwood.

 

What is actually needed is major investment in the road system around Birchwood with,

  • Completion of the “dualling” of the A574 from the M62 and continued connection to the A49, as originally planned.
  • Another route out of Birchwood, possibly connecting it directly to the Wooston Grange Avenue to allow for easier access to the M6.

 

This tinkering will do nothing to improve the situation, and with Warrington’s traffic planning department track record of unsuccessfully putting traffic lights on roundabouts nothing will be solved, and it will probably get worse when the lights are switched on.

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