LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Spokes in the plan’s wheel

WITH reference to the article by Gareth Dennison in the December 15 edition of the Rotherham Advertiser, Cllr Dominic Beck claimed the predominant view of the 100 responses to the original public consultation in October 2021 was in favour of the scheme.

Firstly the scheme he refers to was Wellgate, Broom Road and Broom Valley Road cycle routes.

The consultation was limited to a vaguely worded and fairly innocuous letter sent to local residents by the assistant director for planning and transportation which invited residents to find further details on the council’s website.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

For those who actually responded to the scheme online, they were asked to state whether they were a resident, a motorist, a cyclist etc, so the council should have details of the 100 respondents. For those who didn’t access the full scheme on the website, they may not have been aware of the serious implications.

In the case of the impact to Broom Road, the council’s view that the buses would not be adversely affected by the  periods of congestion associated with the roundabout is a totally illogical statement given that the bus lane ends at Broom Terrace at which point buses (and goods vehicles permitted to use the bus lane) will have to merge with cars into a single lane on the roundabout approach.

I am really glad that I do not live on Treherne Road. The prospect of being required to drive uphill towards Broom Road, particularly in winter weather, and then have to cross a footpath, a cycle lane and a bus lane before entering what is proposed in the scheme to be a narrow traffic lane, is hazardous.

As if to add insult to injury the driver, whether it be a car, Amazon delivery van or a council refuse lorry, would be expected to also contend with cyclists travelling down Treherne Road against the flow of traffic.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

There is no explanation or justification provided in the public consultation for making Treherne Road one way and I am left to conclude that this is associated with the possibility included in Phase 2 Broom Valley Road Option 1 that this road be pedestrianised in front of Broom Valley Road School.

As a resident of Broom Road and a regular walker along Broom Lane, I cannot recall the last time I actually saw a cyclist using the existing cycle lane(s) on either Broom Road or Broom Lane. Indeed the occasional cyclist I have encountered, usually a young rider, have cycled on the pavement not in the cycle lane(s) provided.

Evidence of the usage of the current cycle lanes on Broom Road and Broom Lane does not suggest a large demand for more cycle lanes on Broom Road.

Publication of the results of the consultation, which I have been unable to locate on the council’s website, may justify Cllr Dominic Beck’s statement.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

However, my concern is whether the impact of the proposed changes to the Broom Road layout have been fully realised by local residents and vehicle users.

The council have admitted that the width of the pedestrian footway will be narrowed and that the width of the cycle lane will be less than ideal.

The costs to the community in financial terms, potential traffic congestion, loss of on-street parking and removal of bus stopping places is significant.                       

The benefits to the town by contrast seem to be totally un-quantified despite a cost of £3.6 million

Broom Road Resident, Name and  Address Supplied