Grange Road

This article was published in 1999, in Newsletter 27.

Detailed traffic calming and cycleway plans have now been published for the Grange Road area. Here are the main proposals:

  • At about a dozen places along the length of Grange Road, the road will be narrowed to reduce it to a single lane, with give-way lines to show who has priority.
  • A new northbound cycle lane will be introduced. This will allow northbound cyclists to bypass the road narrowings. The new cycle lane will vary in width, with a minimum width of 1.2 m (which is rather narrow).
  • For southbound cyclists, the existing shared-use pavement will be reconstructed and given raised crossings across side roads (but without priority). The width will be unchanged and cyclists and pedestrians will not be segregated. Although intended mainly for southbound cyclists, it will continue to be two-way.
  • A 20 mph limit will be introduced on Grange Road.
  • Wilberforce Road will be closed to motor traffic at a point south of Clarkson Road.
  • Traffic signals will be introduced at the Grange Road-Madingley Road junction, with advanced stop lines and approach lanes.
  • A toucan crossing will be installed across Madingley Road, east of Storey’s Way, linking the shared-use pavements on each side.
  • A raised table will be constructed at the Adams Road-Burrell’s Walk crossing, with a longer-term plan for traffic signals here.
  • It appears the council has gone off their earlier idea (mentioned in Newsletter 25) of using traffic signals to control alternate line working along the narrow section between the Rugby Ground and Herschel Road, because it would cause ‘too much congestion.’ They will attempt to achieve a similar result using road narrowings.

We welcome many of these proposals (particularly the 20 mph limit). However, we are very uneasy about the proposals for southbound cyclists, who will, we believe, effectively be forced to use an inadequate shared-use pavement. We say ‘forced’ here because the road narrowings will be very unpleasant for cyclists and there will be no other way for southbound cyclists to avoid them. We say ‘inadequate’ because we simply don’t believe the pavement is anywhere near wide enough to cope with carrying all southbound cyclists, a few northbound cyclists, and pedestrians as well. In some places it is barely 2 m wide. And with the need to give way at side roads, it will be less convenient than the road is now. Whilst we know that some cyclists will prefer even an inadequate off-road facility, we feel that it is unreasonable to force all cyclists to use it.

The City Council is still seeking comments on these proposals, which will be on view at the third floor reception at the Guildhall until the end of November. Work is likely to start next spring and finish over the summer.

Nigel Deakin