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News Archive > General > Major one way is a no go

Major one way is a no go

By Beth Perry 11th October 2017

AN AGE old question about the possibility of implementing a one way system in St Columb Major has been answered.
The controversial issue has been put to rest once and for all after a feasibility report commissioned by the Town Council has shown it is not possible to introduce one.
The report, which was carried out by Cornwall Council, tried to find a solution to the congestion issues in the town caused by drivers having to wait, reverse and move out of the way in order to pass through the town’s narrow streets.

After debating the issue a number of times the Town Council voted to commission a feasibility study to find out the best solution before taking the findings to local residents to discuss.
But the study has shown none of the options investigated were suitable for the town due to their effect on either traffic or locals.
The first option investigated was the one-way system but the study found it would affect more than 300 homes and would add a further 2.1 miles to some local’s journey to Trekenning Roundabout.

The report also listed concerns about making the school journey longer for some families, that the system would increase the amount of traffic on Fore Street and that a one way system would mean drivers would be more careless and drive at higher speeds.
Although the one-way system was considered the safest option for both motorists and pedestrians, the ‘severe inconvenience’ to a large portion of the town’s population was deemed unsuitable.

The second are third options to be investigated were both a gyratory system, which would see some streets one way and others not to create a ‘figure of eight’ route.
In theory both of these methods provide both north and south travel routes and so would be more convenient than a standard one way system but the gyratory systems were judged to have major safety concerns, especially related to the increased vehicle usage of West Street given the number of public amenities on the road.
The report worried there would be a higher possibility of collisions between pedestrians and drivers due to West Street’s narrow nature and the lack of visibility.

Mayor of St Columb Major, Cllr Paul Wills said: “We all have to accept the recommendations of the report regardless of our own personal feelings for or against. I fully understand there has been strong feeling within the community and that this has sparked quite a lot of interest and debate amongst the parishioners.
“But, it is important to remember we now have a definitive answer to a question which has been banded around for decades. We took the decision to look into a question that has plagued our community and to give the people the answer to that question once and for all.”
As none of the options to change the traffic flow in the town were deemed suitable, the report recommended a number of measures.

It reads: “It is recommended the enforcement of the current traffic restrictions is increased; mainly the double yellow lines throughout the town. As a number of accidents reported to police involved damage to parked cars and as it was noted that a number of cars on two separate site visits were found to be parking on double yellow lines it is advised that the a review of the traffic enforcement in the town be undertaken.
“A review of the condition and layout of the Trekenning Road free car park located to the South of the village is also recommended. Upgrading this facility could provide additional capacity and encourage increased patronage levels. This in turn could avoid the need for cars from the south to enter Fair Street and head through the centre of town.
“Finally a review of any school travel plan in existence for the St Columb Major ACE Academy could be carried out to promote use of more sustainable modes of transport, such as walking or cycling to school.”
The members of the council are already investigating, costing and applying for grants in order to take over Trekenning car park from Cornwall Council and are now looking at ways to increase traffic enforcement.

Mayor Wills explained: “We now have to seriously considerer employing our own enforcement officer as this is clearly the way ahead and I believe will help alleviate the problems we suffer on a daily basis within our community regarding traffic and parking.  To this end I will write to the portfolio holder at Cornwall Council Cllr Sue James with a request to meet with her to discuss the matter.
“ I put the idea to the Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall at County Hall last week. She and the portfolio holder were not adverse to the idea of town and parish councils employing their own enforcement officers and as long as St Columb Major Town Council can keep the money made in fines then I believe this is the way forward.”

By Beth Perry 11th October 2017

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