Round­about plan mainly inad­e­quate

Uxbridge Gazette - - Your Say -

I AM pleased that the Mayor of Lon­don via TFL has con­sid­ered some im­prove­ment work of Swake­leys Round­about on the A40 in Uxbridge.

I live close to the round­about and fre­quently drive, cy­cle or walk around it. I have re­viewed the pro­posed im­prove­ments and am sorry to con­clude that they are so mi­nor or cos­metic that they seem to be based an inad­e­quate un­der­stand­ing of the ac­tiv­i­ties on the round­about. I be­lieve most of the pro­pos­als should be with­drawn and the cost sav­ings used to bet­ter pur­pose.

The fol­low­ing de­tails the items that should be com­pletely with­drawn 1: The three widened and sig­nalised pedes­trian and cy­cle cross­ings should be left as Bel­isha con­trolled cross­ings as at pre­sent. This is be­cause:

(a) The two set of cross­ings on the west side of the is­land are very rarely used since the Swake­leys Road is very nar­row and to­tally not cy­cle friendly along its length. A good, safe and con­ve­nient al­ter­na­tive for cy­clists and pedes­tri­ans ex­ists nearby (see later).

(b) The two sets of cross­ings on the east side are again al­most to­tally un­used since a good, safe and con­ve­nient al­ter­na­tive ex­ists.

(c) The pro­posed lights on the sliproad leav­ing the is­land can only de­lay traf­fic. They should be left un­changed.

(d) The pro­posed lights on the sliproad lead­ing to the is­land on the east side may as­sist traf­fic flow but will then in­crease the cur­rent back­log of traf­fic onto the high speed mo­tor­way will vastly in­crease the like­li­hood of ma­jor ac­ci­dents.

2: The im­proved cy­cle track pro­posed around the is­land west side is to­tally un­nec­es­sary as the pre­sent track is per­fectly us­able and re­quires no “im­prove­ment”

The ex­ist­ing and bet­ter al­ter­na­tive to 1a (above) is on the east side of Park Road, op­po­site to the ad­ja­cent Hare­field Road junc­tion.

It has a full set of traf­fic sig­nals on Park Road which lead pedes­tri­ans and cy­clists onto a traf­fic-free, paved and lit cy­cle/foot­path which leads along a sports field and wood­land to a wide foot­bridge across the A40 and on to Warren Road and di­rectly to Vyn­ers Schools and a con­ve­nient route to the cen­tre of Ick­en­ham and the road to Ruis­lip.

This paved foot­path is heav­ily used by all and elim­i­nates the need to cross the A40 sliproads. This cy­cle/ foot­path is only around 50 me­tres from the path which crosses the A40 and is not shown on the map and makes the pro­posed cross­ing on the east sec­tion of the A40 al­most to­tally re­dun­dant. It also re­duces the need to use the south sec­tion cross­ings.

The other mi­nor land­scap­ing im­prove­ments are wel­come but hardly worth­while. The claim that the pro­pos­als will “help man­age ad­di­tional ve­hi­cles as­so­ci­ated with the con­struc­tion of HS2” is a claim which is dif­fi­cult to iden­tify or jus­tify. In sum­mary, the pro­posed im­prove­ments are mainly inad­e­quate and poorly con­ceived. Most of the pro­pos­als should be re­con­sid­ered and the cost sav­ings used to bet­ter pur­pose.

Frank Rhodes Uxbridge

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