Temporary fix to ease safety fears

The new crossings at the Regents Circus development and, inset, one of the stories the Adver has run on the  problems experienced there

The new crossings at the Regents Circus development and, inset, one of the stories the Adver has run on the problems experienced there

First published in News by

SAFETY issues at the pedestrian crossing by the new Regent Circus development will be ironed out as the September 4 launch date of the complex approaches.

On Tuesday, councillors and council officers met representatives of Swindon Back Garden residents’ association to discuss the concerns around the crossing, which has been transformed into a raised pedestrian island subject to a 20mph speed limit.

A full safety audit will take place after the work is completed, but officers are looking into temporary solutions to safety fears in the meantime.

The plan is to hold a full residents’ meeting to assuage any remaining worries about the crossing, and measures are already being planned to improve the area for the town’s cyclists.

Toby Robson, of Swindon Back Garden, said: “This has been a first stage meeting to show what our concerns were.

“We have been trying to engage with the officers so our local councillors indicated our concerns.

“Most of the main questions were asked but there were not many answers at this stage.”

Toby said that with the grand opening of the Regent Circus complex pencilled in for September 4, time is running out to rectify any lasting issues.

“We want clarification now on some of the safety issues,” he said.

“It is good that discussions are now taking place, but when mitigation is being put in place this late it makes things difficult.”

Coun Stan Pajak (Lib Dem, Eastcott), attended the meeting on Tuesday with council officers.

“There are worries about how the area is going to cope, because there is no pelican- type crossing there,” he said.

“In theory we have got a ramped area where pedestrians have priority.

“So far we have not had any major problems, but it is a big worry for local residents.

“Right now we have got all the construction work taking place, and this has been an opportunity to talk to officers and show them the concerns.

“They have now gone away to look at how they can improve things in this temporary period.

“One issue from cyclists was to do with the width of the cobbles, and a consultant has agreed to raise the depth so cyclists no longer get stuck.

“This was a chance for officers and ourselves to talk about these issues.

“But from a local point of view we will have a residents’ meeting to let them get some of the answers from officers.

“They have set a provisional date for the grand launch on September 4.

“It is quite remarkable the speed with which they have managed to build it.”

Comments (18)

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7:03am Thu 17 Jul 14

M4 Bypass says...

Even mire crazy........How will the road users know that pedestrians have priority, it's not in the Highway Code and traffic will queue the length of Commercial Road? This is more dangerous than a level crossing.

in Moredon recently the little girl just carried on at the same level, perhaps in her mind thinking it was a pavement, resulting in her death from a slow moving bus.
Even mire crazy........How will the road users know that pedestrians have priority, it's not in the Highway Code and traffic will queue the length of Commercial Road? This is more dangerous than a level crossing. in Moredon recently the little girl just carried on at the same level, perhaps in her mind thinking it was a pavement, resulting in her death from a slow moving bus. M4 Bypass
  • Score: 3

7:09am Thu 17 Jul 14

swindondad says...

This new road layout is not too hard to manage for those of us who know the area but the lack of road markings and street signs must make it a nightmare for anyone coming upon it for the first time.
This new road layout is not too hard to manage for those of us who know the area but the lack of road markings and street signs must make it a nightmare for anyone coming upon it for the first time. swindondad
  • Score: 18

8:11am Thu 17 Jul 14

Alex English says...

How many road users have read the Highway Code? How many even have a copy?

To suggest the layout is dangerous because right of way isn't explained in the Highway Code really is clutching at straws.

I've now driven through the junction numerous times, gone over it by bike and also crossed as a pedestrian. It works very well. Although some seem to think it'll be a disaster if there aren't red and green lights telling everyone what to do and when, the reality is that the system functions very smoothly and doesn't needlessly prevent the flow of traffic.
How many road users have read the Highway Code? How many even have a copy? To suggest the layout is dangerous because right of way isn't explained in the Highway Code really is clutching at straws. I've now driven through the junction numerous times, gone over it by bike and also crossed as a pedestrian. It works very well. Although some seem to think it'll be a disaster if there aren't red and green lights telling everyone what to do and when, the reality is that the system functions very smoothly and doesn't needlessly prevent the flow of traffic. Alex English
  • Score: 48

8:44am Thu 17 Jul 14

A.Baron-Cohen says...

It should be fun to watch on week end nights......
It should be fun to watch on week end nights...... A.Baron-Cohen
  • Score: -1

9:25am Thu 17 Jul 14

BCDR99 says...

"We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen."

So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty.
That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.
"We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen." So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty. That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence. BCDR99
  • Score: 3

9:28am Thu 17 Jul 14

Morsey says...

Pajak says "No major problems so far" ... meaning ... no road deaths along there? I think people are avoiding the area like the plague at the moment!
Pajak says "No major problems so far" ... meaning ... no road deaths along there? I think people are avoiding the area like the plague at the moment! Morsey
  • Score: -4

9:40am Thu 17 Jul 14

faatmaan says...

exit stage left, if this area is going to be a ticking bomb, many motorists (customers/shoppers) will just take the easy option and go elsewhere, why bother with the hassle especially at 5pm weekday nights, which member of our planning team is going to put their head up above the parapet and be drug tested.
exit stage left, if this area is going to be a ticking bomb, many motorists (customers/shoppers) will just take the easy option and go elsewhere, why bother with the hassle especially at 5pm weekday nights, which member of our planning team is going to put their head up above the parapet and be drug tested. faatmaan
  • Score: 5

9:42am Thu 17 Jul 14

jonelway says...

Only once someone is killed here will the stupidity of this arrangement be seen. As soon as someone is killed the perpetrators of this design should be jailed.

I similar set up was put in place in Gloucester and it's a death waiting to happen. Motorists are too inconsiderate to the fact they're driving around in a potential weapon. There are far too many cars on the roads for shared schemes to work.
Only once someone is killed here will the stupidity of this arrangement be seen. As soon as someone is killed the perpetrators of this design should be jailed. I similar set up was put in place in Gloucester and it's a death waiting to happen. Motorists are too inconsiderate to the fact they're driving around in a potential weapon. There are far too many cars on the roads for shared schemes to work. jonelway
  • Score: 2

9:44am Thu 17 Jul 14

Sandor Clegane says...

Morsey wrote:
Pajak says "No major problems so far" ... meaning ... no road deaths along there? I think people are avoiding the area like the plague at the moment!
Not the case, at all. It's as busy as it was prior to the changes.

Anyone who's been in the area at night at weekends already knows that drunk pedestrians cross whenever and wherever they feel like it. Because drivers become immune to anything other than red lights, it was actually more dangerous previously.

While there will always be selfish road users, both drivers and pedestrians, from what I've seen of the new road layout it does appear that people are using it sensibly in the vast majority of cases. It's only really bus drivers I've seen using it as if they have right of way over every living creature.

But, then, that's nothing new.
[quote][p][bold]Morsey[/bold] wrote: Pajak says "No major problems so far" ... meaning ... no road deaths along there? I think people are avoiding the area like the plague at the moment![/p][/quote]Not the case, at all. It's as busy as it was prior to the changes. Anyone who's been in the area at night at weekends already knows that drunk pedestrians cross whenever and wherever they feel like it. Because drivers become immune to anything other than red lights, it was actually more dangerous previously. While there will always be selfish road users, both drivers and pedestrians, from what I've seen of the new road layout it does appear that people are using it sensibly in the vast majority of cases. It's only really bus drivers I've seen using it as if they have right of way over every living creature. But, then, that's nothing new. Sandor Clegane
  • Score: 52

9:50am Thu 17 Jul 14

nobody says...

BCDR99 wrote:
"We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen."

So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty.
That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.
That's the problem, far too many drivers do not think or pay attention to what they are doing.
[quote][p][bold]BCDR99[/bold] wrote: "We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen." So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty. That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.[/p][/quote]That's the problem, far too many drivers do not think or pay attention to what they are doing. nobody
  • Score: -1

10:02am Thu 17 Jul 14

CocoaClown says...

The problem at the moment is that there are a number of cars which park along the approach to this crossing and as there are only temporary signs which are placed at ground level these are hidden by the number of parked vehicles. Also, the signs say "pedestrian crossing" but all that would point to that is a dropped curb with some fancy paving. Even the pedestrians I've seen there are unsure as to who has priority and when cars stop they hesitate. It works the other way round as some cars hesitate to stop as they are unsure if they have to.

I have to agree that whilst it isn't an issue having a pedestrian crossing here, you have other areas in Swindon which are paved up in a similar way (Moredon for example) where pedestrians don't have right of way. This is confusing to both pedestrians and motorists.
What's wrong with a zebra crossing? The vast majority of people (pedestrians including children and motorists) know what one of those are.
The problem at the moment is that there are a number of cars which park along the approach to this crossing and as there are only temporary signs which are placed at ground level these are hidden by the number of parked vehicles. Also, the signs say "pedestrian crossing" but all that would point to that is a dropped curb with some fancy paving. Even the pedestrians I've seen there are unsure as to who has priority and when cars stop they hesitate. It works the other way round as some cars hesitate to stop as they are unsure if they have to. I have to agree that whilst it isn't an issue having a pedestrian crossing here, you have other areas in Swindon which are paved up in a similar way (Moredon for example) where pedestrians don't have right of way. This is confusing to both pedestrians and motorists. What's wrong with a zebra crossing? The vast majority of people (pedestrians including children and motorists) know what one of those are. CocoaClown
  • Score: 8

10:04am Thu 17 Jul 14

house on the hill says...

jonelway wrote:
Only once someone is killed here will the stupidity of this arrangement be seen. As soon as someone is killed the perpetrators of this design should be jailed.

I similar set up was put in place in Gloucester and it's a death waiting to happen. Motorists are too inconsiderate to the fact they're driving around in a potential weapon. There are far too many cars on the roads for shared schemes to work.
Nothing to do with the number of cars on the road or the layout, its purely down to the selfish, moronic, arrogant attitudes of those behind the wheel! Roads don't kill people, people kill people!
[quote][p][bold]jonelway[/bold] wrote: Only once someone is killed here will the stupidity of this arrangement be seen. As soon as someone is killed the perpetrators of this design should be jailed. I similar set up was put in place in Gloucester and it's a death waiting to happen. Motorists are too inconsiderate to the fact they're driving around in a potential weapon. There are far too many cars on the roads for shared schemes to work.[/p][/quote]Nothing to do with the number of cars on the road or the layout, its purely down to the selfish, moronic, arrogant attitudes of those behind the wheel! Roads don't kill people, people kill people! house on the hill
  • Score: 0

10:12am Thu 17 Jul 14

Davey Gravey says...

You couldn't make this up could you? Oh of course I forgot this is Swindon after all. It's the norm here. Utter incompetence
You couldn't make this up could you? Oh of course I forgot this is Swindon after all. It's the norm here. Utter incompetence Davey Gravey
  • Score: -11

11:31am Thu 17 Jul 14

Phantom Poster says...

BCDR99 wrote:
"We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen."

So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty.
That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.
But idiot drivers won't think, will they? You can't design a road layout which is safe if it relies on everyone being perfect. Still, at least if you are run over at the junction you will have the satisfaction of being able to take the moral high ground!
[quote][p][bold]BCDR99[/bold] wrote: "We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen." So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty. That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.[/p][/quote]But idiot drivers won't think, will they? You can't design a road layout which is safe if it relies on everyone being perfect. Still, at least if you are run over at the junction you will have the satisfaction of being able to take the moral high ground! Phantom Poster
  • Score: 4

1:17pm Thu 17 Jul 14

house on the hill says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
You couldn't make this up could you? Oh of course I forgot this is Swindon after all. It's the norm here. Utter incompetence
from someone who lives here and contributes to the "norm"!!! Enough said.....
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: You couldn't make this up could you? Oh of course I forgot this is Swindon after all. It's the norm here. Utter incompetence[/p][/quote]from someone who lives here and contributes to the "norm"!!! Enough said..... house on the hill
  • Score: 2

6:01pm Thu 17 Jul 14

MrAngry says...

nobody wrote:
BCDR99 wrote:
"We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen."

So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty.
That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.
That's the problem, far too many drivers do not think or pay attention to what they are doing.
Lack of attention applies equally to pedestrians and cyclists. Walking and texting at the same time etc.
[quote][p][bold]nobody[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BCDR99[/bold] wrote: "We don't know what to do therefore it's an accident waiting to happen." So, in the event of uncertainty, just blindly carry on instead of slowing down and being more vigilant for others who may be sharing your uncertainty. That is half of the point of this type of layout. To make people think. If you can't do that, you should probably consider handing back your driving licence.[/p][/quote]That's the problem, far too many drivers do not think or pay attention to what they are doing.[/p][/quote]Lack of attention applies equally to pedestrians and cyclists. Walking and texting at the same time etc. MrAngry
  • Score: 3

1:55am Sun 20 Jul 14

mug? says...

A bit late to the party but I think a 10mph speed limit should be implemented on this short section. 20mph is way too fast and many motorists see a speed limit as a target or something to exceed and will tailgate anyone driving slower.

Having driven that section a few more times now (I rarely go into Swindon Town Centre if I can avoid it) I have dropped down to 10mph or less to pass this small section and it really isn't an inconvenience to do so. My worry is when there is a long stream of pedestrians crossing there will be tail backs and frustrated motorists as there is nothing saying when to let the motorist have a go. I'm thinking along the lines of when the cinema is open and a movie is about to finish or start. There will be streams of people coming out and crossing there.
A bit late to the party but I think a 10mph speed limit should be implemented on this short section. 20mph is way too fast and many motorists see a speed limit as a target or something to exceed and will tailgate anyone driving slower. Having driven that section a few more times now (I rarely go into Swindon Town Centre if I can avoid it) I have dropped down to 10mph or less to pass this small section and it really isn't an inconvenience to do so. My worry is when there is a long stream of pedestrians crossing there will be tail backs and frustrated motorists as there is nothing saying when to let the motorist have a go. I'm thinking along the lines of when the cinema is open and a movie is about to finish or start. There will be streams of people coming out and crossing there. mug?
  • Score: 0

3:55pm Sat 2 Aug 14

GrumpyLocal says...

I cannot even understand why there is any need for this to even be debated.
Prior to the new development, when there was a considerable number of people using the college, the council and everybody concerned were more than happy to have the movement of pedestrians & vehicles controlled by traffic lights and with the use of give way lines.
Suddenly, with the likely increase in foot traffic & vehicles trying to get to that particular area, the council have thrown away years & years worth of common sense & replaced the concept of crossing a road safely with having to walk out in front of moving traffic.
The argument has nothing to do with arrogant drivers or stupid pedestrians & everything to with creating a junction/crossing area that everyone understands & knows how to use.
The new junction looks good and is an improvement (aesthetically) on the old crossing but has reduced traffic from Commercial Rd to one lane. The visual impact of a set of traffic lights to control the traffic safely & reinstate a second lane from Commercial Rd would be minimal to say the least & leave everyone knowing exactly what they should be doing.
For years we have been doing everything possible in this country to try and remove us from dangerous situations, sometimes to the point where people complain that things have been taken too far, yet here for no other reason than fashion or the latest thing to try, the council have decided to make things more dangerous for everyone.
I cannot even understand why there is any need for this to even be debated. Prior to the new development, when there was a considerable number of people using the college, the council and everybody concerned were more than happy to have the movement of pedestrians & vehicles controlled by traffic lights and with the use of give way lines. Suddenly, with the likely increase in foot traffic & vehicles trying to get to that particular area, the council have thrown away years & years worth of common sense & replaced the concept of crossing a road safely with having to walk out in front of moving traffic. The argument has nothing to do with arrogant drivers or stupid pedestrians & everything to with creating a junction/crossing area that everyone understands & knows how to use. The new junction looks good and is an improvement (aesthetically) on the old crossing but has reduced traffic from Commercial Rd to one lane. The visual impact of a set of traffic lights to control the traffic safely & reinstate a second lane from Commercial Rd would be minimal to say the least & leave everyone knowing exactly what they should be doing. For years we have been doing everything possible in this country to try and remove us from dangerous situations, sometimes to the point where people complain that things have been taken too far, yet here for no other reason than fashion or the latest thing to try, the council have decided to make things more dangerous for everyone. GrumpyLocal
  • Score: 0

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