The Westy LTN scheme went live in June 2022, introducing a series of temporary wooden planters as modal filters, which restrict vehicular traffic from accessing particular streets. These are aimed at reducing traffic, preventing drivers from using residential streets for ‘rat running’, improving air quality and creating a safer environment for pedestrians and cyclists.
As part of the trial, the council has committed to listen to the views of local people, to understand levels of support, and whether residents have any comments about specific locations or aspects of the scheme.
An interim survey was undertaken from 18 July – 11 September 2022 to gather public feedback on the scheme, receiving 986 responses. A review of this feedback has now been completed, and has - along with monitoring information collected on traffic patterns and impacts - identified a number of issues, including:
- Some increases in access traffic and increased speeds on residential streets such as Lindley Avenue and Broadbent Avenue.
- Challenges accessing homes in the Griffiths Street and Reynolds Street areas.
- Difficulties operating the lockable bollard on Reynolds Street to provide access for school coach trips.
- Planters appearing overgrown and untidy.
To address these concerns and issues, the council will be making a number of changes to the scheme. These are:
- The removal of the planters at the north end of Griffiths Street. This will allow greater access options to homes in this area.
- Removing the bollard on Reynolds Street, and extending the eastbound one-way from Davies Avenue to the planters at Tinsley Street. This will improve access to Reynolds Street, relieve pressure on Longdin Street and allow coaches to pick up from schools unhindered.
- Restoring Broadbent Avenue to two-way traffic, between Griffiths Street and Davies Avenue.
In addition, there will be an increase in the maintenance of the planters that remain in place during the trial.
The changes will be made to the LTN in the first week of November. A letter is being sent to all Westy residents, and details of the changes are also being published on the council’s website and social media channels.
Monitoring of the impacts of the revised scheme will continue, with a full monitoring and evaluation report publicly available at the completion of the trial.
A new public survey will go live in early 2023 to help the council understand how the revised scheme is working. The feedback received will inform any future decision as to whether the scheme is made permanent or not. This decision is expected to be made in six months’ time.
Warrington Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for transportation, highways and public realm, Cllr Hans Mundry, said: “The introduction of the experimental LTN in Westy is aimed at reducing through-traffic and improving conditions for people living in the area.
“We believe that such schemes are a vital tool in delivering against some of our commitments – such as combatting the climate emergency, improving air quality, supporting healthier and more active lives and encouraging more people to walk and cycle.
“We do recognise, however, that schemes which aim to change common travel habits can be unpopular. That’s why, from the outset, we have pledged to listen to views of residents about the trial LTN in Westy, with public feedback helping to shape the proposals.
“Our revised plans are the next step forward in this discussion. We’ve carefully reviewed the feedback from our extensive survey, along with our own monitoring data, and we are making changes which respond to a number of the concerns raised.
“These discussions will continue, and we will keep engaging with our communities about the revised scheme - with further consultation to take place in the new year.”
To see the revised plans for the Westy LTN, view the survey report in full, and find out more about the Central 6 Streets Plan, please visit warrington.gov.uk/central-6-streets-plan
For general LTN enquiries, please contact email@example.com or write to: Transport for Warrington, East Annexe, Town Hall, Sankey Street, WA1 1UH