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Westbrook/Asda traffic lights

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Originally posted by legion:

I'm not anti pedestrian here,

... yet your proposal is that pedestrians should simply go somewhere else, and the junction design should take no account whatsoever of their needs.

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Originally posted by Peter:

I wonder if the push-bike mob had a huge input into this?

Our main efforts went to opposing (unsuccesfully)the conversion of pavements to shared use. we recommended that the roundabouts should be changed to a more cycle friendly geometry - like the ones on the new Gemini Link Road.

 

We did point out the need for pedestrian crossings at all the junctions on Cromwell Avenue - though we advocated zebras due to the greater pedestrian priority offered.

 

See:

http://www.warringtoncyclecampaign.co.uk/report/NW-Warrington/NW-Warrington-Response.htm

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Originally posted by Pete Owens:

Originally posted by legion:

I'm not anti pedestrian here,

... yet your proposal is that pedestrians should simply go somewhere else, and the junction design should take no account whatsoever of their needs.
Well when I worked in that area, for two years I was a pedestrian, and the two areas I mentioned for a crossing as being halfway up the road, us locals to the area...the ones that use it regularly know full well that the "somewhere else" as you put it, would literally be a MAXIMUM of 100 yards, access to the shops would have been greatly improved if the powers that be had better spent their money covering the open sewer/brook (whatever it is that runs infront of asda) that makes pedestrians coming from the callands estate direction have to walk at least 800 meters to get to the shops.

 

its very commendable that you have taken up an alternative point of view to the people who oppose the new lights, we do need a re-dress, but you must realise, that we actualy do know what we're talking about rather than just arguing for the sake of it.

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Peter..... I have just clicked on the link at the end of your post and to be perfectly honest, the ideals and wants of the Warrington Cycle Campaign are as bad as the design of the website on which they feature....

 

There are endless references and phrases such as "We are disappointed that there are no recommendations to modify the roundabouts to a more cycle friendly design" and "The best way to achieve high quality cycle routes is to ensure that the roads themselves are constructed to cycle friendly designs, by adopting effective cycle audit procedures"

 

Just what planet are they on?

 

You are in favour of the bus lane on Winwick Road? (quite possibly the biggest cause of rush hour congestion in the entire town)

 

You object to the shared cycle/pedestrian walkway down Cromwell Avenue? (I bloomin live up there and travel down Cromwell 20 times a day or more and I have never, never, never seen more than a dozen pedestrians and cycles at once (with the exception of school times))

 

Of North Park Brook Roads proposal for a shared use path it is written: "The shared use path would create hazards where none existed before" and so the new traffic lights have created only good things on Cromwell? The road up Walton drag is so much better now that the nearside lane of the dual carriageway is a cycle lane... catering for the dozen or so bikes a week that must use it?

 

Why do we have to have so many bloomin crossings? I walk my lad to school at St Philips every day and we have to cross at the Garwood Close/Cinema roundabout. The nearest crossings are to the left near the seven woods or to the right at the new congestion causing ASDA lights. There are no lights at our roundabout, no lollipop man and no traffic calming... so should I go to either of those or should I teach my son the correct way to cross the road? Just like I was taught at school? To actually wait for a gap in the traffic and look both ways while crossing. I believe it was called the green cross code... and if you didn't do it when I was a kid, a big guy in a Gary Glitter costume used to appear next to you and tell you off!! (well it did on the adverts.... and the bloke looked just like the fella who played Darth Vader!)

 

But seriously.... cyclists are a bigger danger to themselves than any amount of cars will ever be... how many times do you see the lycra clad loonys travelling 3 abreast? how many red lights do cyclists actually stop at? particularly if they are turning left? Its all very well to accomodate cyclists Peter; but they are hardly a majority, they have no insurance and contribute nothing financially to the pot. Don't try and snarl up the already crowded roads with more traffic calming measures (which of course you want to be cycle friendly so it doesn't slow down the racer bikes) People and goods have to get around this town. There are no viable alternatives for most people from public transport.

 

Just my opinion of course and no doubt some will agree and some not. I don't particularly care because I live near these lights and believe me they are causing chaos and I can only imagine it will be a matter of time before ASDA have their say as to their future.

 

[ 23.07.2007, 23:09: Message edited by: BazJ ]

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My son used to go to St Phillips, and the greatest hazard to his safety was the parent's need to park as closely as possible to the school so the little darlings wouldn't develop any leg muscles. There isn't, generally that much traffic around that area apart from on Cromwell Ave itself and as Baz says the Green Cross Code worked. A bit of common sense and pedestrian crossings where needed is all that should be required :roll::roll::roll:

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Well I live on Garwood Close and I know of at least 3 kids who are taken to school in the car!

 

The Green Cross Code did work but part of the issue these days is like asperity says... the need to park as close as possible to the school. The number of parents who will park in the bollarded off entrance to the staff car park of the school and just inside the zig zags (but this then blocks the footpath while mummy and daddy say bye bye to precious lamb!!) I reckon Milly will back me up on this one!

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Originally posted by BazJ:

Peter..... I have just clicked on the link at the end of your post and to be perfectly honest, the ideals and wants of the Warrington Cycle Campaign are as bad as the design of the website on which they feature....

 

There are endless references and phrases such as "We are disappointed that there are no recommendations to modify the roundabouts to a more cycle friendly design" and "The best way to achieve high quality cycle routes is to ensure that the roads themselves are constructed to cycle friendly designs, by adopting effective cycle audit procedures"

 

Just what planet are they on?

Indeed. What is your problem with that? That is simply advocating good practice and what is (at least in theory) the councils own policy.

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Originally posted by Pete Owens:

 

Indeed. What is your problem with that? That is simply advocating good practice and what is (at least in theory) the councils own policy.

Come on Pete, good practice? It's not good practice to design the roads for a tiny minority of users to the exclusion and detriment of others.

 

Want an example of the Councils own policy/good practice - see new Westbrook lights, which by the way had a traffic survey team in place this Saturday. Seems someone is already aware of the issues and is hopefully looking to make changes.

 

[ 24.07.2007, 10:37: Message edited by: fatshaft ]

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Originally posted by BazJ:

 

You are in favour of the bus lane on Winwick Road? (quite possibly the biggest cause of rush hour congestion in the entire town)

 

The bus lane on Winwick Road does not cause any congestion at all. The queues originate at the junctions down stream, so they cannot possibly be caused by the bus lane. At ruch hour the Tesco traffic lights on the approach to the bus lane is probably the only junction in the Town Centre without queues.

 

But actually, the proposal in the consulutation document that we were supporting was for bus lanes running the whole length of Winwick Road

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Originally posted by Pete Owens:

Originally posted by BazJ:

 

You are in favour of the bus lane on Winwick Road? (quite possibly the biggest cause of rush hour congestion in the entire town)

 

The bus lane on Winwick Road does not cause any congestion at all. The queues originate at the junctions down stream, so they cannot possibly be caused by the bus lane. At ruch hour the Tesco traffic lights on the approach to the bus lane is probably the only junction in the Town Centre without queues.

 

But actually, the proposal in the consulutation document that we were supporting was for bus lanes running the whole length of Winwick Road

The bus lane DOES create congestion, every time you come out of town the funnelling into one lane until you get past Polar Ford causes tailbacks.

 

I'm all for open discussion, but there's no point baldly stating something that is patently untrue as if it were a statement of fact.

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Originally posted by fatshaft:

Come on Pete, good practice? It's not good practice to design the roads for a tiny minority of users to the exclusion and detriment of others.

Who said anything about the detriment of other road users. Most of the design changes that would arise out of cycle audit procedures would actually be to the benefit of motorists. Things such as wider lanes to facilitate overtaking and so on. Mostly it is just about avoiding creating particular hazards such as pinch points that create conflict between road users.

 

For example we advocated adopting continental geometry for the roundabouts on Cromwell Avenue. This would have slowed the traffic moving through the junction, so it would have been possible to put zebra crossings on all the arms (like the junction between Longwood Road and Witherwin Avenue in Appleton.

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Originally posted by fatshaft:

The bus lane DOES create congestion, every time you come out of town the funnelling into one lane until you get past Polar Ford causes tailbacks.

 

I'm all for open discussion, but there's no point baldly stating something that is patently untrue as if it were a statement of fact.

I spent 2 afternoons studying the traffic flow in detail at the bus lane over a couple of rush hours (when Tesco were trying to persuade the council to remove it). Even at the peak flow there were usually a few seconds at the end of the green cycle when no cars at all passed through the lights.

 

Queues started to form when the volume of traffic driving past the bus lane exceded to capacity of the lights at Folly Lane.

 

The only time a queue looked to be forming on the approach to the bus lane was when the queue at the Long Lane rounabout backed up to the Folly Lane lights and then stretched back to the beginning of the bus lane.

 

In any case there never were 2 lanes on that stretch of road. The bus lane was constructed in addition to the existing road.

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Originally posted by BazJ:

You object to the shared cycle/pedestrian walkway down Cromwell Avenue?

Indeed. Pavement cycling is illegal because it is antisocial and dangerous. Putting up silly blue signs does not make it any more acceptable or safe - just encourages cyclists to endager themselves and others.

 

Of North Park Brook Roads proposal for a shared use path it is written: "The shared use path would create hazards where none existed before"

Even the council accepted the logic of that argument. Do you actually think it would be a good use of council resourses to build a shared use path next to a virtually traffic free road?

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Originally posted by Gary:

Well here is the response from the highways dept - in full.

 

...

 

Planning Application (Mitigation Measures)

 

As part of the planning assessment of the proposed Asda extension, the off-site highway requirements would have included the capacity improvement of the roundabout junction at Westbrook Crescent/Cromwell Avenue. This junction would have been changed to a new signalised junction that included pedestrian facilities on all approach arms.

 

It is interesting that the original motivation for the scheme was to enhance capacity - which is what you would normally expect if you replace a roundabout with a traffic light junction occupying the same space.

 

Looking at the junction there seems to be a very inefficient cycle, with separate phases for right turning traffic approaching from each of the 4 directions, leaving only a small proportion for traffic moving straight along Cromwell Avenue.

 

It certainly does not seem to have been particularly well designed from a pedestrian or cyclists perspective - although it is an improvement on what went before as roundabouts are very hostile for vulnerable road users.

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PO - I do see your point (infact my observations agree) about the bus lane not causing these particular queues on winwick road. and that they be caused by the incapacity further up (of which I dont see the follylane lights being too much of a problem until affected by the long lane ones...which are an abortion).

 

but if what you are saying is that no queues are formed in this area because of the bus lane, and that your observations were that the area was one of the most free-flowing junctions in warrington...well then why the hell does it need a bus lane at all, since the buses will be able to travel with us motorists in this lovely free flowing junction area.

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The bus lane is needed so that buses can overtake the existing queue for the lights at Folly Lane. At peak times this means that the bus gets to go through the lights a cycle earlier than than it would otherwise, thus saving passengers about 2 minutes. If they opened up the blocked off section of the old route of Winwick Road that would provide an even greater benefit.

 

There is a greater need for a bus lane on the stretch up to the college, but this stretch got funded first as part of the planning gain from the Tesco development.

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Peter....

 

I am begining to think you and your buddies are not quite living in the world with the rest of us!

 

It is OK to allow a bus to reach the lights a cycle earlier than some cars thus saving about 2 minutes for what? maybe 25 people on the bus on average? 10 at most for non rush hour traffic? In the meantime you delay a damn sight more drivers and passengers in their cars and snarl up the towns roads...why is it not a timed bus lane like most other ones we have in town

 

the phrase "never have so many been delayed by so few" comes to mind

 

There is a bus lane at the bottom of Cromwell avenue which the buses NEVER use because it is on the inside lane and all the buses go to town which means they have to be in the outside lane at the Crosfields island... not known for their patience, WBT drivers get into the non-bus lane bit as soon as they have picked up passengers... did you sit and study that one?

 

How about the one they actually abandoned at Crosfields roundabout? the bus lane on the inside which, if used correctly meant the bus had to cross 2 lanes of traffic to be in the right lane for town!

 

I'm sorry Peter, I just don't buy this whole bike thing... I have a bike and I occasionally ride it. I don't expect cars to get out of my way and if necessary if there is no cycle lane I will ride on the footpath to avoid the cars. It may be illegal and it may annoy a few pedestrians but there are a lot less of them than there are cars.. and anyway are the Police going to stop me? I doubt it too.

 

Anyway on another note, you seemed very keen to pick out some of my points and highlight them and answer them; however you missed out the point about the Walton road and the reduction of a dual carriageway to a single lane to cater for cyclists who never actually seem to be using it.... how can that be justified?

 

Baz

 

[ 25.07.2007, 22:54: Message edited by: BazJ ]

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well my next question was touched upon by Baz, and that is why should bus users get priority at the detriment of other road users.

 

its a catch22 to me

 

the "bods" put in place a system, than causes cars to queue so that public transport can go unhindered.

 

Their logic for this is apparently to reduce traffic on the road BY encouraging us to use public transport which is not stuck in the said traffic and is "environmentaly" friendly.

 

however if it were not for these lanes, the traffic would be more free flowing, cars would be more environmentaly freindly since most cars tick over a 4cyl engine stationary at 1000ish rpm so thats 4000 tiny bursts of carbon every minute they are stood still which could be reduced by the length of the journey if the car was in unhindered motion.

 

bus services are not as EF as is made out, since the service has to run wether people use it or not, a big smelly what is it (I know nothing about buses but i would guess) a 6LITRE Diesel Engine ???, taking a long trip all around areas, hoping to pick up someone en-route Can simply not be as EF as my family car traveling just where I want to go.

 

and while Im at it, what bugs me about these ministers in london who keep telling the rest of the country that we should not be using our cars

 

while they hop on a tube/bus system that for a couple of pound a day can take them virtualy anywhere from their suburbs to thier offices in cental london.

 

I like many people in areas that arnt the countries capitol simply cannot use PT reasonably to get to work. we simply do not have the network they do.

even if you worked in warrington, odds are it would be at least 2 bus rides. Myself I work 20 miles away from warrington in another town (thats 20 minutes by car at ?4 a day there and back).

 

via public transport it would involve 2 train & 4 bus journeys a day at 3 hours each way. and a cost over ?13 a day.

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Originally posted by BazJ:

Peter....

It is OK to allow a bus to reach the lights a cycle earlier than some cars thus saving about 2 minutes for what? maybe 25 people on the bus on average? 10 at most for non rush hour traffic? In the meantime you delay a damn sight more drivers and passengers in their cars

As I have explained in the post above the bus lane does not delay anybody.

 

1. The bus lane was constructed in addition to the existing road.

 

2. The queues originate the junctions down stream so cannot possibly be caused by the bus lane.

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There's none as blind as those who don't want to see. :roll:

 

Suppose two foreign artics are stopped in the Tesco/bus lane straddling the lights and the outside lane won't let them in, what is the resulting line of traffic called, if not a queue? and what is the cause if not the bus lane? :roll:

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Pete,

 

you keep saying that the lane was put in as an addition to the existing lane..

 

being that I was christened in the St Annes church as it was, back then, my fathers funeral was there and it was my junior school church, I know the stretch quite well.

 

You do know no road widening occured for this, and the bus lane was simply "stolen" from the existing lane, which while maybe having no seperation markings that I remember (althgough they could have been there)...has been and was used as 2 lanes for many many years. one thing I do remember was the funeral/wedding cars using this area, and Im sure when these events was not happening cars used it freely as a lane.

 

so can you stop saying that.

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Originally posted by BazJ:

I have a bike and I occasionally ride it. I don't expect cars to get out of my way and if necessary if there is no cycle lane I will ride on the footpath to avoid the cars.

And thus make it much less likely that drivers will notice you - and much more likely to hit you when they cross your paths at junctions. riding on the pavement is dangerous for the same reason as riding at night without lights.

 

There has been a lot of research on the subject worldwide and it all points to sharing with traffic being by far the safest place to ride.

 

This is why it is consistently those groups and individuals that are most hostile to cycling who tend to advocate converting pavements to shared use - and cycling groups who are most strongly opposed.

It may be illegal and it may annoy a few pedestrians but there are a lot less of them than there are cars.. and anyway are the Police going to stop me? I doubt it too.

So when you had your previous anti-cyclist rant lambasting law-breaking cyclists you were basically criticising your own behaviour and assuming that other cyclists were equally stupid.

Pots and Kettles come to mind.

 

I have no doubt that you show just as much disregard of the law and contempt for the needs of other road users when you drive your car. It is not the vehicle being driven that causes these things, but the attitude of the driver - whatever vehicle they happen to be using at the time.

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Originally posted by Peter:

Suppose two foreign artics are stopped in the Tesco/bus lane straddling the lights and the outside lane won't let them in, what is the resulting line of traffic called, if not a queue? and what is the cause if not the bus lane? :roll:

The cause of that (hypothetical and tempory) would be the combination building the extra traffic lane on Lythgoes Lane and the inconsiderate behaviour on the part of some drivers - and yes if you opened the bus lane then those trucks would reach the back of the queue for the lights at Folly Lane a few seconds earlier. The following traffic would still be queuing behind them just a little bit further up the road and it would make no difference at all to the time they went through the lights.

 

This could happen in any situation where the number of lanes reduces. The only solution to this would be to never ever install multi-lane roads.

 

I am talking about the routine day to day operation of the road - which is what I observered over two afternoons. The capacity of the Tesco junction and the bus lane is greater than the junctions upstream and downstream.

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