Labour councillors representing the Kings Chase ward in Kingswood will lobby a key South Gloucestershire Council committee tomorrow as part of their long battle for improved road safety measures on Tenniscourt Road, which includes a secondary school and a fire station. The councillors have been actively seeking funds for the improvements for many years, which would include an extra crossing close to Kings Oak Academy, following concerns from local residents about the speed of traffic using the residential road.
Back in March 2013 the councillors persuaded the local Area Forum to add Tenniscourt Road to its ‘Investigation Scheme’ list of casualty reduction projects, in competition against many other proposals. This investigation stage devises and costs-up a specific scheme for implementation. The councillors also succeeded in getting £24,000 of developer contributions earmarked for the improvements.
Now the councillors plan to present a statement to the council’s Planning and Transport Committee meeting when it meets tomorrow (Wednesday 26th), urging their colleagues to prioritise the worked-up scheme for Tenniscourt Road for implementation by awarding a further £30,000 from the Local Transport Capital Programme. The statement is reproduced below.
Councillors Pat Apps, Bill Bowrey and Terry Walker say:
“The safety of local school children and other residents has always been our paramount concern. We have been actively steering the process for getting safety improvements installed through the Council and are aware that it has taken a long time. We are as frustrated as residents at the length of time the various feasibility and design stages have to take. We now look to a positive outcome at tomorrow’s meeting.
If we succeed, the next stage will be an official consultation process – which will include a drop-in session – on the detailed design of the scheme. We do not want to see further delay but it is important that all local residents have a chance to contribute.
We must make sure nothing derails the process now. This includes any move that could take us back to square one and make us go through all the feasibility and design stages yet again.”
25th March 2014
Kings Chase Councillors’ statement to the PTSE Committee in support of the granting of funding to implement road safety measures in Tenniscourt Road Kingswood.
Tenniscourt Road is being used, on a daily basis, as a “rat run” as a means of cutting out the traffic signals on the Ring Road to gain access to the A420.
Traffic counts and speed readings are very high, with vehicles sometimes travelling at speeds in excess of 50mph. The road is also used by many HGV’s.
Given these facts, the most worrying aspect is that pupils from Kings Oak Academy regularly cross this road and the risk will only be heightened when a new Primary School is built in the near future.
There have been numerous incidents and accidents.
The road was selected for an investigation by Councillors at the Chase Area Forum last year. Since then, local Councillors have liaised with residents and Highways Officers to promote the scheme to a priority status. It has been raised through full Council, at the Safer & Stronger meetings and at the Area Forum.
The last update at the Area Forum on March 4th 2014 stated
“Funding to come from Casualty Reduction and Developer funds and will be incorporated in 2014/15 Capital Programme for delivery.”
At this point we would like to thank local resident Richard Jones who has collected and presented a petition to Council and raised awareness through two press articles.
Design of the proposed new scheme has been finalised and is now ready for consultation.
The soon to be enlarged Kingswood Fire Station is situated in Tenniscourt Road and will serve the whole of the East Bristol area.
Local Councillors and Highways Officers have held talks with Senior Fire Officers to design a scheme that will significantly increase the safety of pedestrians but will not greatly compromise the response times of the Fire Service.
We would therefore ask you to grant the necessary funding from the Casualty Reduction budget and treat the implementation of the scheme (subject to consultation) as a priority, a position that is also supported by the local MP.