As part of the Safer Roads Fund, the A625 has been identified as a route in need of road safety improvements.
Next steps for bus corridors on southwest of Sheffield to be discussed
The next steps for plans to improve bus corridors in the southwest of Sheffield are to be discussed at Committee next week.
The Transport, Regeneration and Climate Policy Committee will meet on Wednesday, July 19th, to discuss proposals for Abbeydale Road, London Road and Ecclesall Road.
The plans, which were first presented to Council members in November 2021, have been developed following public consultation and feedback from local residents and business owners. The latest scheme proposes a number of improvements to traffic signal operation, junction upgrades, and bus priority measures which will enable public transport to travel through these corridors with less disruption.
Camera technology will be used to tackle illegal parking in the existing bus lanes which contributes to current bus delays. At this time, red routes and changes to bus lane hours of operation along the corridors will not be introduced as part of the scheme.
If the latest proposals are endorsed by the Committee, the Council will undertake further statutory consultation on the changes. Subject to the outcome of the consultation, the measures will be implemented – with work likely to start on the ground in Spring 2024. Once in place, we will be undertaking a review to determine whether further bus priority interventions will be required.
Cllr Ben Miskell, Chair of the Transport, Regeneration and Climate Policy Committee, said:
“It is so important we listen to local residents and businesses when introducing new ways of travel across Sheffield and bring everyone along on the journey. That is why I’m pleased that the latest plans have listened to the thoughts of those in the southwest of the city and propose to adopt a different approach – implementing a number of changes at this stage and assessing their impact before any further interventions are considered.
“I hope we can reach a resolution that works for everyone involved – helping improve connectivity and access for our vital bus links but also ensuring it functions effectively for those who live, work and travel through the area.
“As our city expands, it is crucial we have a high-quality, sustainable transport network to offer residents a genuine choice about how they travel. While the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority (SYMCA) manages public transport, we as a Council play an important role in ensuring the routes it serves are well equipped and able to facilitate demand. We can play our part by ensuring buses are given priority, and in turn improve their reliability and consistency across the city – giving people peace of mind that their bus will arrive on time and get them to their destination as planned.”
Cllr Miskell and Council Leader Cllr Tom Hunt have been going out and speaking with businesses on Abbeydale Road and Ecclesall Road this month to listen and understand their thoughts about the scheme and what they would like to see.
Why this area of Sheffield?
A number of assessments into the reliability of bus services across Sheffield have revealed Abbeydale Road and Ecclesall Road to be among some with the most delays.
- In 2019 bus company First Group found Eccessall Road and Abbeydale Road, including London Road, to be amongst the top 20 locations for delays in Sheffield.
- SYMCA bus journey time analysis also highlighted significant delays on these routes – with journey speeds lower than 10mph for a large proportion of the day.
- Illegal parking on these routes often leads to delayed buses and the build-up of traffic. For example, during a three day survey period, 704 vehicles were parked illegally along London Road and Abbeydale Road between the Bannerdale Road and Boston Street junctions. A further 317 vehicles were parked illegally along Ecclesall Road between the Psalter Lane and Pear Street junctions.
In addition, transport is responsible for 26% of Sheffield’s CO2 emissions.
By improving the bus network and making it more appealing, it is hoped to give people more choice about the way that they travel and encourage the use of public transport.
What changes are proposed?
There are several changes proposed for the southwest corridors in Sheffield, such as:
- Infrastructure improvements at or near junctions
- Traffic signal upgrades with buses given priority at junctions
- Enhanced enforcement of existing bus lane hours of operation with cameras
These are broken down in more detail in the TRC Committee papers and below.
A number of traffic signals upgrades at junctions and pedestrian crossings are proposed on both bus corridors to provide bus detection when approaching traffic lights, giving buses priority.
Bus lanes with cameras
Cameras would be installed along London Road/Abbeydale Road and Ecclesall Road to enforce illegal parking and loading within bus lanes during operational hours.
Abbey Lane junction
- A short section of bus lane between Sherwood Glen and Abbey Lane would be removed and replaced with two general traffic lanes. This would enable the implementation of a bus priority system at the traffic lights.
- Double yellow lines would be introduced between Sherwood Glen and Abbey Lane heading towards the city centre. This would ensure buses could be detected and given priority by the traffic lights.
Springfield Road junction
- A short section of bus lane at the junction, heading towards the city centre, would be removed and replaced with two general traffic lanes. This would enable the implementation of a bus priority system at the traffic lights to speed up journeys.
- Double yellow lines would be introduced on approaches to the junction. This would ensure buses could be detected and given priority by the traffic lights.
- Two bus stops will be relocated to ensure bus detection systems work correctly.
- A disabled bay is proposed to be introduced adjacent to the businesses close to the junction.
Tesco access road junction
- Existing bus lane between Hasting Road and Bannerdale Road will be designed to bypass the junction for Tesco supermarket, with this section of bus lane operating for 24 hours a day. This will reduce delays for buses through this junction.
- The bus stop currently on the Bannerdale Road junction would be relocated closer to Tesco.
Bannerdale Road junction
- Work is underway to determine how controlled pedestrian crossings could be introduced on all parts of the junction – details to be confirmed and local consultation may be required.
- Double yellow lines to be applied on Abbeydale Road on the Bannerdale Road junction, heading out of the city centre. These would prevent parking and waiting at any time, with current loading restrictions of 07.30 - 09.30 / 16.00 - 18.30 remaining in force. This would enable the widening of the two lanes heading towards the city centre and provide more space for buses and cars.
Hunters Bar roundabout and Rustlings Road junction
- The bus lane heading out of the city centre between the roundabout and Rustlings Road junction would be replaced with two general traffic lanes – allowing smoother flow of traffic exiting the roundabout and reducing congestion..
- The bus stop immediately after the roundabout on Ecclesall Road, heading out of the city centre, would be removed to ensure smoother traffic flow. Other bus stops in close proximity will still be available.
- Double yellow lines would be introduced in this section. These would prevent parking and waiting at any time, with current loading restrictions of 07.30 - 09.30 / 16.00 - 18.30 remaining in force.
- Improvements to crossing points at the Rustlings Road junction.
Moore Street roundabout
- A priority system for buses would be installed on approach to the roundabout, headed towards the city centre to improve journey times. This would replace the existing traffic signals on the roundabout.
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