Europe is signal for about turn
‘NAKED’ roads which have been stripped of their traffic lights have proved safe and successful in Europe. This gives hope to the hundreds of who have written saying they do not want lights to return to the Junction 10 roundabout. According to the motorists who use it, the roundabout has been flowing better and is safer without the lights. This is a view shared by one of Europe’s leading road engineers, Hans Monderman. He was involved with the redesign of the Dutch town of Drachten where the majority of traffic lights were removed from streets. The thinking behind this was that as driving in this environment is more challenging, motorists take more responsibility. The result was a better flow of traffic and fewer accidents. The design is based on a ‘shared space’ system, which sees roads de-cluttered of markings, lights and signs to create an environment where motorists and pedestrians have equal rights. Last year Ashford councillors and road chiefs went to Holland to see how the system operates, with the intention of bringing it to the ring road.