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The cabinet meeting on 12 July has approved the civil engineering contractor for working on this scheme. Works will start on 7 August.
The works will deliver an improved junction with benefits to all users.
The Lovely Lane/Bewsey Road junction is in Bewsey and is an existing junction controlled by traffic lights. It is the crossroads of two key traffic routes and is also the point where there are many local movements on foot and by bike leading to local jobs, schools and leisure facilities.
The council’s Local Transport Plan (LTP) aims to make it easier and safer for children and adults to walk and cycle more in Warrington and make travel easier for people in mobility scooters and wheelchairs. This will be better for everybody as it will achieve wider health and environmental benefits.
Though Warrington has a good off-road cycling network, cycling on roads is not always easy and there are many places where improvements are needed. Our Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP) has identified several routes where we know that cycling could be made safer and easier for all with the right infrastructure in place. The Bewsey Road corridor is one such route which shows a lot of potential for increasing cycling numbers but where it is currently difficult and at times dangerous. This can be a deterrent for people making short trips by bike, particularly for families and the less confident.
The other benefit is that this junction is long overdue for resurfacing and also the traffic signals need replacing to make their operation more efficient. This is clearly beneficial for general traffic. There is therefore an opportunity to create a better junction fit for purpose for the 21st century and which meets the needs of all users.
The works will include resurfacing of the full junction, repositioning of islands and street lighting columns as well as upgrading the traffic signals. The intention is to create a Cycle Optimised Protected Signals junction.
Commonly known as ‘CYCLOPS’, this is a type of junction which separates people walking, cycling and wheeling from motorised traffic, reducing the risk of collisions or conflict between users. This is now an increasingly common form of junction improvement being delivered by local authorities with several examples in Manchester. The Lovely Lane Cyclops will be the first of its kind in Warrington.
The traffic signals will operate exactly as they do currently with separate stages for east/west & north/south traffic. The same number of traffic lanes will be retained. Motorists will notice very little difference though the road surface will be much smoother and more pleasant to drive on. People walking and cycling however will see a huge improvement in their safety.
Funding has been obtained from the government’s Active Travel Fund.
We carried out a 4 week public consultation exercise between 21 November and 19 December 2022. Local people living near the scheme were delivered letters and there was a comprehensive publicity campaign including posters, press releases, social media and a drop in event at Whitecross Community Centre.
We also spoke to local ward members, interest groups as well as disabled groups. The local schools were also contacted.
Overall, the majority of people were in favour of the proposals. We received some useful feedback which resulted in the design being amended to make it better.
All enquiries related to this scheme should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org