Swindon Advertiser£100k to widen road is a bad idea, say residents (From Swindon Advertiser)

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£100k to widen road is a bad idea, say residents

Swindon Advertiser: David Parkinson and residents are highlighting the problems with buses and HGVs which come down Queen Elizabeth Drive David Parkinson and residents are highlighting the problems with buses and HGVs which come down Queen Elizabeth Drive

PLANS to use a pot of money to help widen Queen Elizabeth Drive in Priory Vale have been met with derision from a number of residents on the road.

In the budget for next year, set to go before the full council later this month, a fund of £845,000 has been set up to fund various projects in Swindon.

Of that cash, £100,000 has been allocated to widening the road at various points to help buses pass each other. But some locals who have been campaigning to have buses moved off the route for safety reasons, argue the road is not wide enough meaning the buses regularly have to mount pavements to pass each other.

Until this point, the council has said it will not force Thamesdown Transport to alter the route. Instead it has put the money forward as a solution but the residents say this is not the answer.

David Parkinson, 50, said: “It’s absolutely nonsense to spend this money on widening the road when there is a far cheaper alternative available.

“Thamesdown Drive is certainly wide enough for the buses and it never used to be a problem before. It is a waste of money.

“When budgets are being cut and services being lost the money could easily be used elsewhere. There is a much easier solution and it says a lot that they are considering spending the money this way.”

David, and fellow Queen Elizabeth Drive resident Brian Mclean, 57, have met with councillors several times to discuss the issue and believe if the issue is to be solved by widening Queen Elizabeth Drive then it will take a much bigger sum than the £100,000.

Brian said: “Even if widening Queen Elizabeth Drive was the answer to the issue, the £100,000 is such a paltry sum that it would come nowhere near meeting the job.

“It would come nowhere near to covering widening this road to the same aesthetic standard that the residents have historically enjoyed and it is alarming that Swindon Council are not recognising this.

“The residents do not want this misspend of tax payers’ money on road widening – the buses can be re-routed onto safe, effective and efficient routes that already exist.”

The Adver attempted to contact both the Council Leader and the Cabinet Member for Transport but they were unavailable yesterday.

Comments (23)

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8:12am Fri 7 Feb 14

sweepster01 says...

The buses have been retimed so they rarely meet now on this road and i think you'll find its not the buses driving on the pavement or the grass verge but recycling trucks.
The buses have been retimed so they rarely meet now on this road and i think you'll find its not the buses driving on the pavement or the grass verge but recycling trucks. sweepster01
  • Score: 8

8:19am Fri 7 Feb 14

house on the hill says...

Why would you want to live in North Swindon anyway with its well known problems that will never be solved?
Why would you want to live in North Swindon anyway with its well known problems that will never be solved? house on the hill
  • Score: -3

8:55am Fri 7 Feb 14

stfcdod says...

No, no, no, I just don't believe it. Queen Elizabeth Drive residents complaining about something. Tell me this can't be true.
With all the whinging that goes on down that road, why don't you just move.
No, no, no, I just don't believe it. Queen Elizabeth Drive residents complaining about something. Tell me this can't be true. With all the whinging that goes on down that road, why don't you just move. stfcdod
  • Score: 17

9:08am Fri 7 Feb 14

LordAshOfTheBrake says...

house on the hill wrote:
Why would you want to live in North Swindon anyway with its well known problems that will never be solved?
There are a couple of nice areas in North Swindon :)
[quote][p][bold]house on the hill[/bold] wrote: Why would you want to live in North Swindon anyway with its well known problems that will never be solved?[/p][/quote]There are a couple of nice areas in North Swindon :) LordAshOfTheBrake
  • Score: 12

9:20am Fri 7 Feb 14

beach1e says...

the residents, or at least one resident don't want the buses down their road,so, turn the road into a private one and let the one resident control who can use it.
the residents, or at least one resident don't want the buses down their road,so, turn the road into a private one and let the one resident control who can use it. beach1e
  • Score: 2

9:26am Fri 7 Feb 14

stu12345 says...

Oh this story and it's development has made me laugh. I'm begining to think this might be the new 'posh' part of Swindon full of snobs and NIMBYS. The fact the council are prepared to spent money for the problem and the people won't except it is hilarious.
It's starting to sound like they are just to good to have public transport outside their houses, and so they choose this idea to remove.
I think the best solution would be that if buses are stopped, cars should be too! Why should someone using the bus get of in thamesdown drive or further because the grass is getting damaged. With the size of cars nowadays they might be too big to pass each other , so I propose the solution is making the road buses only, and all the residents can park in the country park opposite and walk to their house daily. After all the bus won't need to mount the curb if your car isn't there

And one last thing, you might want to talk to one of your neighbours, the amount of time he/she parks their car on the grass verge is unreal. Let's not be hypocrites now.
Oh this story and it's development has made me laugh. I'm begining to think this might be the new 'posh' part of Swindon full of snobs and NIMBYS. The fact the council are prepared to spent money for the problem and the people won't except it is hilarious. It's starting to sound like they are just to good to have public transport outside their houses, and so they choose this idea to remove. I think the best solution would be that if buses are stopped, cars should be too! Why should someone using the bus get of in thamesdown drive or further because the grass is getting damaged. With the size of cars nowadays they might be too big to pass each other , so I propose the solution is making the road buses only, and all the residents can park in the country park opposite and walk to their house daily. After all the bus won't need to mount the curb if your car isn't there And one last thing, you might want to talk to one of your neighbours, the amount of time he/she parks their car on the grass verge is unreal. Let's not be hypocrites now. stu12345
  • Score: 6

9:30am Fri 7 Feb 14

BCDR99 says...

One of the reasons for increased traffic on this road at peak times is because the residents wanted the bus gate on Torun Way made permanent and enforced, so that cars were kept off their precious roads.

However, you can legitimately cut through from QED to Torun Way through Casterbridge Road. That's much quicker than going all the way down Thamesdown Drive and back again along Westfield Way if you're coming from Oakhurst/Redhouse.

I find it amazing that people who live on a through road, moan when people use the road to get from A to B.

If they stop the buses using QED, there are going to be more people who are a long way from a bus stop, making the bus service even less user friendly. That's not sensible, long-term transport planning is it?

Maybe they could focus some attention on the people who drive a few hundred yards to take their children to the local school also?

If you're not part of the solution, you're a part of the problem.
One of the reasons for increased traffic on this road at peak times is because the residents wanted the bus gate on Torun Way made permanent and enforced, so that cars were kept off their precious roads. However, you can legitimately cut through from QED to Torun Way through Casterbridge Road. That's much quicker than going all the way down Thamesdown Drive and back again along Westfield Way if you're coming from Oakhurst/Redhouse. I find it amazing that people who live on a through road, moan when people use the road to get from A to B. If they stop the buses using QED, there are going to be more people who are a long way from a bus stop, making the bus service even less user friendly. That's not sensible, long-term transport planning is it? Maybe they could focus some attention on the people who drive a few hundred yards to take their children to the local school also? If you're not part of the solution, you're a part of the problem. BCDR99
  • Score: 15

11:23am Fri 7 Feb 14

dogchops says...

Me me me me me
Me me me me me dogchops
  • Score: 8

11:36am Fri 7 Feb 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

A small correction. The bus gate was a planning restriction. The residents had no say in the matter.
A small correction. The bus gate was a planning restriction. The residents had no say in the matter. The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man
  • Score: 3

1:18pm Fri 7 Feb 14

house on the hill says...

LordAshOfTheBrake wrote:
house on the hill wrote:
Why would you want to live in North Swindon anyway with its well known problems that will never be solved?
There are a couple of nice areas in North Swindon :)
Yes I know Lord Ash, I was this time referring to the infrastructure rather than the people!!!
[quote][p][bold]LordAshOfTheBrake[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]house on the hill[/bold] wrote: Why would you want to live in North Swindon anyway with its well known problems that will never be solved?[/p][/quote]There are a couple of nice areas in North Swindon :)[/p][/quote]Yes I know Lord Ash, I was this time referring to the infrastructure rather than the people!!! house on the hill
  • Score: 1

7:25pm Fri 7 Feb 14

Tanglefoot1 says...

They moan when they get buses and they moan when they don't get buses,never satisfied.
By the looks of the bloke in the photo a bit of excercise will do him good.
They moan when they get buses and they moan when they don't get buses,never satisfied. By the looks of the bloke in the photo a bit of excercise will do him good. Tanglefoot1
  • Score: 6

7:47pm Fri 7 Feb 14

Oik1 says...

Nice to see so many have the same view as myself, I read this in the paper and one thing came to mind, NIMBY's with regard the buses.
Nice to see so many have the same view as myself, I read this in the paper and one thing came to mind, NIMBY's with regard the buses. Oik1
  • Score: 3

8:26pm Fri 7 Feb 14

msw says...

Widen the road, Problem solved, I like it, I guess that resident don't use buses, wait till he gets a bit older, he'll want the bus to stop outside his house then...LOL Thames water also want to build a Septic tank somewhere near here to prevent flooding, May be they could dig a tunnel for buses?
The actual Problem here is the local planners who did not from the start of the MASSIVE North Swindon expansion design and build suitable roads in and out, then they spent the 106 money on anything but North Swindon.
The Bus gate was in the plans b4 any homes were built, some people did not do their homework!!!
When Priory Vale was built the planners and developers said they had learnt from their mistakes in Abbey Weeds, conclusion is they didn't.
Widen the road, Problem solved, I like it, I guess that resident don't use buses, wait till he gets a bit older, he'll want the bus to stop outside his house then...LOL Thames water also want to build a Septic tank somewhere near here to prevent flooding, May be they could dig a tunnel for buses? The actual Problem here is the local planners who did not from the start of the MASSIVE North Swindon expansion design and build suitable roads in and out, then they spent the 106 money on anything but North Swindon. The Bus gate was in the plans b4 any homes were built, some people did not do their homework!!! When Priory Vale was built the planners and developers said they had learnt from their mistakes in Abbey Weeds, conclusion is they didn't. msw
  • Score: 2

9:57pm Fri 7 Feb 14

faatmaan says...

what next, a request to change the road name From Queen Elizabeth Drive into a shorter name when start getting older and find it difficult to write heir address from memory on their complaints to the council, perhaps we could twin the road with the Canal project, they seem to be the same sort of selfish zealots.
what next, a request to change the road name From Queen Elizabeth Drive into a shorter name when start getting older and find it difficult to write heir address from memory on their complaints to the council, perhaps we could twin the road with the Canal project, they seem to be the same sort of selfish zealots. faatmaan
  • Score: 2

9:00am Sat 8 Feb 14

LordAshOfTheBrake says...

msw wrote:
Widen the road, Problem solved, I like it, I guess that resident don't use buses, wait till he gets a bit older, he'll want the bus to stop outside his house then...LOL Thames water also want to build a Septic tank somewhere near here to prevent flooding, May be they could dig a tunnel for buses?
The actual Problem here is the local planners who did not from the start of the MASSIVE North Swindon expansion design and build suitable roads in and out, then they spent the 106 money on anything but North Swindon.
The Bus gate was in the plans b4 any homes were built, some people did not do their homework!!!
When Priory Vale was built the planners and developers said they had learnt from their mistakes in Abbey Weeds, conclusion is they didn't.
Absolutely, the number of people who spent 150k to 350k on their homes without doing their homework and putting thought into the location and its suitability along with their future requirements is staggering. Now they are all up in arms about the lack of parking etc.
[quote][p][bold]msw[/bold] wrote: Widen the road, Problem solved, I like it, I guess that resident don't use buses, wait till he gets a bit older, he'll want the bus to stop outside his house then...LOL Thames water also want to build a Septic tank somewhere near here to prevent flooding, May be they could dig a tunnel for buses? The actual Problem here is the local planners who did not from the start of the MASSIVE North Swindon expansion design and build suitable roads in and out, then they spent the 106 money on anything but North Swindon. The Bus gate was in the plans b4 any homes were built, some people did not do their homework!!! When Priory Vale was built the planners and developers said they had learnt from their mistakes in Abbey Weeds, conclusion is they didn't.[/p][/quote]Absolutely, the number of people who spent 150k to 350k on their homes without doing their homework and putting thought into the location and its suitability along with their future requirements is staggering. Now they are all up in arms about the lack of parking etc. LordAshOfTheBrake
  • Score: 2

3:35pm Sat 8 Feb 14

V4CSOI says...

What is very clear is that most of those who have commented above are not even remotely aware that Swindon Borough Council had itself previously designated QED South as a road unfit for use by buses and actually designed and constructed a bus route to avoid such use. Residents were invited by SBC to view such plans at Premier House way back in 2001. SBC have now mysteriously lost those plans along with other important documentation like road safety audits and road adoption reports which would have demonstrated why those plans were necessary but the large ‘bus-sized’ roundabout, built by Bryant Homes at the specific request of SBC and now marooned in the middle of the Boulevard (The Taw Hill Folly), is clear testimony to the fact that such plans did exist.

Why did SBC plan an alternative bus route? - because they were aware then that road is too narrow for two large vehicles to pass ( SBC and Thamesdown Transport both currently admit this) and that the Thetford Way roundabout is so poorly constructed that buses travelling South must go around it totally the wrong way with restricted visibility (according to present Government guidelines and acknowledged by SBC) resulting in frequent conflict with other Southbound vehicles. Buses also frequently drive over pedestrian crossing points and habitually cause cars travelling in the opposite direction to have to take avoiding action whilst travelling on their own side of the road. The road ironwork is also being habitually damaged by buses requiring its frequent replacement at public expense because it was not built to the required standard for regular bus traffic.

Why did SBC not follow through their plans? - The answer is that they simply forgot about them! Taw Hill estate was adequately served by buses without the need for buses to pass through it until September 2011 when, as a result of SBC's incompetence and in full knowledge of the problems which existed with QED South, they 'rubber stamped' Thamesdown Transport’s and Stagecoach's use of the road as a bus route without any risk assessment of the route or remedial improvements to the road.

The problems which SBC predicted when it designed its bus route have been evident ever since September 2011 and residents now remarkably stand accused of being 'Nimbys' because they are trying to do something about it in the interests of road safety. From the above comments, there are some, who being ignorant of the full facts, seem content for SBC to behave in such an incompetent manner and waste public money. Such people are also seem prone to making remarkable suggestions that QED residents should move to avoid a problem they did not create or are being ‘too posh’ or even ‘zealots’ because they stand-up for themselves. They appear very happy to make inappropriate assumptions and cast unfounded slurs and are clearly totally unaware that car parking is not a problem on QED South and it is not the reason why buses are habitually leaving the road or causing other problems. Fortunately such people are in a very small minority - more enlightened public spirited people are actually trying to do something to tackle persistent administrative incompetence at SBC that has seen the northern extension built with distributor roads (not just QED South) that are unfit for purpose, with insufficient school places (both Primary and Secondary) and a under capacity sewage system to cope with existing and ongoing development.

Nobody is saying that the buses should be stopped from serving Taw Hill and, if QED South was the only route they could take to do so, that would be the end of that. QED South residents would now be gratefully accepting remedial road widening proposals and funding. However, there is simply no need to waste public money, in a time of cuts to vital public services and austerity, trying to widen QED South, because there are safe, alternative, efficient and effective routes for buses to use! . It is a simple as that! Nothing to do with being ‘zealots,’ ‘too posh’ or ‘Nimbys’ – just pure common sense!
What is very clear is that most of those who have commented above are not even remotely aware that Swindon Borough Council had itself previously designated QED South as a road unfit for use by buses and actually designed and constructed a bus route to avoid such use. Residents were invited by SBC to view such plans at Premier House way back in 2001. SBC have now mysteriously lost those plans along with other important documentation like road safety audits and road adoption reports which would have demonstrated why those plans were necessary but the large ‘bus-sized’ roundabout, built by Bryant Homes at the specific request of SBC and now marooned in the middle of the Boulevard (The Taw Hill Folly), is clear testimony to the fact that such plans did exist. Why did SBC plan an alternative bus route? - because they were aware then that road is too narrow for two large vehicles to pass ( SBC and Thamesdown Transport both currently admit this) and that the Thetford Way roundabout is so poorly constructed that buses travelling South must go around it totally the wrong way with restricted visibility (according to present Government guidelines and acknowledged by SBC) resulting in frequent conflict with other Southbound vehicles. Buses also frequently drive over pedestrian crossing points and habitually cause cars travelling in the opposite direction to have to take avoiding action whilst travelling on their own side of the road. The road ironwork is also being habitually damaged by buses requiring its frequent replacement at public expense because it was not built to the required standard for regular bus traffic. Why did SBC not follow through their plans? - The answer is that they simply forgot about them! Taw Hill estate was adequately served by buses without the need for buses to pass through it until September 2011 when, as a result of SBC's incompetence and in full knowledge of the problems which existed with QED South, they 'rubber stamped' Thamesdown Transport’s and Stagecoach's use of the road as a bus route without any risk assessment of the route or remedial improvements to the road. The problems which SBC predicted when it designed its bus route have been evident ever since September 2011 and residents now remarkably stand accused of being 'Nimbys' because they are trying to do something about it in the interests of road safety. From the above comments, there are some, who being ignorant of the full facts, seem content for SBC to behave in such an incompetent manner and waste public money. Such people are also seem prone to making remarkable suggestions that QED residents should move to avoid a problem they did not create or are being ‘too posh’ or even ‘zealots’ because they stand-up for themselves. They appear very happy to make inappropriate assumptions and cast unfounded slurs and are clearly totally unaware that car parking is not a problem on QED South and it is not the reason why buses are habitually leaving the road or causing other problems. Fortunately such people are in a very small minority - more enlightened public spirited people are actually trying to do something to tackle persistent administrative incompetence at SBC that has seen the northern extension built with distributor roads (not just QED South) that are unfit for purpose, with insufficient school places (both Primary and Secondary) and a under capacity sewage system to cope with existing and ongoing development. Nobody is saying that the buses should be stopped from serving Taw Hill and, if QED South was the only route they could take to do so, that would be the end of that. QED South residents would now be gratefully accepting remedial road widening proposals and funding. However, there is simply no need to waste public money, in a time of cuts to vital public services and austerity, trying to widen QED South, because there are safe, alternative, efficient and effective routes for buses to use! . It is a simple as that! Nothing to do with being ‘zealots,’ ‘too posh’ or ‘Nimbys’ – just pure common sense! V4CSOI
  • Score: -2

12:47pm Mon 10 Feb 14

CocoaClown says...

I have to agree with the majority here. When the bus service was first introduced in this area people were up in arms that buses were going to pass their houses. This was even before the issue of road width or mounting curbs came about. If buses have problems, I'm pretty sure that the bin and recycling lorries will also, along with removal companies and delivery lorries. I'm sure the residents won't be happy having to wheel their bins half a mile or whatever as we can't possibly have a vehicle mounting a curb slightly.

The Council are renowned for ignoring issues usually, I think you should be grateful they have come up with a solution. Just because it means the buses will still use QED isn't an excuse to play the "waste of money" card. Perhaps it will also help the bin lorries and other delivery vehicles and school buses? Lets be honest, the residents aren't going to be happy no matter what solution is found until the bus route is changed and people that use the service inconvenienced.

If someone said we will widen the road for free it would still be an issue as the buses would still drive past their houses. You just can't please some people.
I have to agree with the majority here. When the bus service was first introduced in this area people were up in arms that buses were going to pass their houses. This was even before the issue of road width or mounting curbs came about. If buses have problems, I'm pretty sure that the bin and recycling lorries will also, along with removal companies and delivery lorries. I'm sure the residents won't be happy having to wheel their bins half a mile or whatever as we can't possibly have a vehicle mounting a curb slightly. The Council are renowned for ignoring issues usually, I think you should be grateful they have come up with a solution. Just because it means the buses will still use QED isn't an excuse to play the "waste of money" card. Perhaps it will also help the bin lorries and other delivery vehicles and school buses? Lets be honest, the residents aren't going to be happy no matter what solution is found until the bus route is changed and people that use the service inconvenienced. If someone said we will widen the road for free it would still be an issue as the buses would still drive past their houses. You just can't please some people. CocoaClown
  • Score: 2

2:52pm Mon 10 Feb 14

V4CSOI says...

Road width for passing large vehicles and their use of the Thetford Way roundabout has been an issue since the road was built. That is why SBC came up with their plan for a bus route avoiding QED South in response to residents' concerns at the time. That was well before any bus ever ran along QED South.

Bin and recycling lorries have to use the road to collect rubbish and do so once a week at most. There are presently 516 bus journey along QED South every week all of which have the potential to create the issues highlighted above - which amount to much more than 'mounting a kerb slightly' . These journey do not have to occur - Taw Hill was adequately served with a buses for a long time before September 2011.

When a Council considers it necessary to design and publish to the public a bus route to avoid QED South and arranges for the Boulevard Bus roundabout to be constructed as part of that route, they do not do this lightly - it is because they believe there is a road safety risk if such use is allowed. For SBC to forget their plans beggers belief but when the error is pointed out to them and the very problems they predicted and sought to avoid are occuring - for them to claim that they will just monitor the situation to see if any accidents occur amounts to a 'Russian Roulette' approach to road safety. They know that the gun is loaded and they will keep allowing the chamber to be spun until it eventually goes off.

Once again, if QED South was the only route for buses to serve Taw Hill then the residents would happily accept and be grateful for the road widening and would not be objecting to it being used by buses. But there are other safe, alternative, efficient and effective routes for the buses to use and, in these circumstances, it is pure nonsense for public money to spent in a time of austerity and when other vital services are being cut in a half-hearted attempt to alleviate some of the problems presently being caused by buses.

£100k will not come close solving the problems caused by bus use on QED South. When the then Councillor Tomilinson originally approached SBC about problems with the Thetford Way mini roundabout because construction lorries could not negotiate it safely, he was told then that SBC agreed that the roundabout had been poorly constructed but that SBC felt there was little that could be done as there was insuffcient space to make the roundabout bigger. £100k will not be sufficent to purchase additional land from local residents; even if it could be bought and then fund the construction a new roundabout which will conform with Government guidelines thereby making it safe.

£100k will also not come close to the amount needed to widen the road but may just cover protection for the affected grass verges. Damage to the verges, whilst undesireable is the least of the problems that the buses create. In addition to the issues at the Thetford Way roundabout, it is frequently the case that motorist travelling in the opposite direction on their own side of the road have to take avoiding action and there are many examples of where buses have driven over dimpled pedestrian crossing points. Thses events are accidents waiting to happen - potential accidents involving buses which have a minimum weight of 14.4T and can reach over 20T when fully laden (Nearly 3 times the 7.5T limit imposed on the road)

If you can find somebody willing to donate the £500k + (possibly much more) that that will necessary to make QED South suitable for use by buses, I and I suspect the rest of the residents will be very happy to see the necessary remedial work carried out and for buses to carry on passing our doors. You can even remove the 7.5T weight limit. This is true - whether you choose to believe it or not!

What we will not do is stand idly by and watch £100k of public money being wasted when other bus routes are available on what promises to be a sticky plaster approach which will fail to do job in any event and when that money could be spent in many more effective and appropriate ways.
Road width for passing large vehicles and their use of the Thetford Way roundabout has been an issue since the road was built. That is why SBC came up with their plan for a bus route avoiding QED South in response to residents' concerns at the time. That was well before any bus ever ran along QED South. Bin and recycling lorries have to use the road to collect rubbish and do so once a week at most. There are presently 516 bus journey along QED South every week all of which have the potential to create the issues highlighted above - which amount to much more than 'mounting a kerb slightly' . These journey do not have to occur - Taw Hill was adequately served with a buses for a long time before September 2011. When a Council considers it necessary to design and publish to the public a bus route to avoid QED South and arranges for the Boulevard Bus roundabout to be constructed as part of that route, they do not do this lightly - it is because they believe there is a road safety risk if such use is allowed. For SBC to forget their plans beggers belief but when the error is pointed out to them and the very problems they predicted and sought to avoid are occuring - for them to claim that they will just monitor the situation to see if any accidents occur amounts to a 'Russian Roulette' approach to road safety. They know that the gun is loaded and they will keep allowing the chamber to be spun until it eventually goes off. Once again, if QED South was the only route for buses to serve Taw Hill then the residents would happily accept and be grateful for the road widening and would not be objecting to it being used by buses. But there are other safe, alternative, efficient and effective routes for the buses to use and, in these circumstances, it is pure nonsense for public money to spent in a time of austerity and when other vital services are being cut in a half-hearted attempt to alleviate some of the problems presently being caused by buses. £100k will not come close solving the problems caused by bus use on QED South. When the then Councillor Tomilinson originally approached SBC about problems with the Thetford Way mini roundabout because construction lorries could not negotiate it safely, he was told then that SBC agreed that the roundabout had been poorly constructed but that SBC felt there was little that could be done as there was insuffcient space to make the roundabout bigger. £100k will not be sufficent to purchase additional land from local residents; even if it could be bought and then fund the construction a new roundabout which will conform with Government guidelines thereby making it safe. £100k will also not come close to the amount needed to widen the road but may just cover protection for the affected grass verges. Damage to the verges, whilst undesireable is the least of the problems that the buses create. In addition to the issues at the Thetford Way roundabout, it is frequently the case that motorist travelling in the opposite direction on their own side of the road have to take avoiding action and there are many examples of where buses have driven over dimpled pedestrian crossing points. Thses events are accidents waiting to happen - potential accidents involving buses which have a minimum weight of 14.4T and can reach over 20T when fully laden (Nearly 3 times the 7.5T limit imposed on the road) If you can find somebody willing to donate the £500k + (possibly much more) that that will necessary to make QED South suitable for use by buses, I and I suspect the rest of the residents will be very happy to see the necessary remedial work carried out and for buses to carry on passing our doors. You can even remove the 7.5T weight limit. This is true - whether you choose to believe it or not! What we will not do is stand idly by and watch £100k of public money being wasted when other bus routes are available on what promises to be a sticky plaster approach which will fail to do job in any event and when that money could be spent in many more effective and appropriate ways. V4CSOI
  • Score: 0

8:33pm Mon 10 Feb 14

V4CSOI says...

If you want somebody to blame for bus users being incovenienced you need look no further than SBC. At the closing of a meeting on the 18th October 2013 at the Civic Office about QED South the Managing Director of Thamesdown Transport was heard to tell the Leader of SBC words to the effect of 'don't go building any more roads like that.' The use of this language is very revealing and accurately reflects what is going on in North Swindon in general. Thamesdown Transport freely admit that QED South is 'less than ideal' for use by buses and SBC freely admit that all of the problems caused by buses using the road are 'undesireable'. Health and Safety good practice has a hierarchy of action which requires identified risks to be eliminated wherever possible and thereafter managed if elimination is not possible. None of the risks caused by running buses down QED South were present prior to September 2011 and it is very possible to return to that position and eliminate the risk which have materialised.

As alluded to by some contributors above, SBC have, for one reason or another, made a pigs-ear of distributor road building in North Swindon. QED South is just one example of this mess. It is not the residents of QED South who are to blame for this!

In a survey of Swindon residents prior to the creation the SBC Local Transport Plan (2011-2025) they were asked to vote on five criteria laid down in the Depratment of Transport's 'Developing a Sustainable Transport System (2008)'.'The public of Swindon voted 'Safety' as their top priority. Next came 'Quality of Life', then 'reducing Carbon emissions', then 'Economic Competitveness' and finally 'Equality.'

'Safety' is not being promoted by running buses along estate roads which are 'less then ideal' and lead to 'undesireable' consequences. The sort of road which cause the Head of Thamesdown Transport to tell the Leader of SBC 'not to build any more like it!' It is not being promoted where risks that should and can be eliminated are being allowed to continue. Where chances are being taken with road safety!

Quality of Life is not being promoted by running buses along roads unfit for their use which see motorists having to dive into driveway entrance to avoid oncoming buses and screech to a halt as buses come round roundabout at them the wrong way. It is not promoted by the constant ripping up of grass verges and the pollution and noise that 516 bus journeys per week produce. Many of those journeys being by buses which are virtually empty.

Carbon emissions are not being reduced by running buses along estate roads which are unfit for their use where they are having to make longer journeys and stop and start more frequently, when Thamesdown Drive provides an ideal and rapid transit route which will bring those emissions to a minimum.

Economic Competitveness is promoted by producing a rapid transit transport system which see buses taking passengers into the centre of Swindon as quickly as possible. If you can get into Swindon quickly by bus many more people will ditch the car and use public transport. More people and businesses will be attracted to Swindon as a result. The milk train approach through estates on unfit roads does not achieve this aim. Priority needs to given to building the Thamesdown Drive extension to meet up with Great Western Way and removing other bottle necks on the major Swindon arteries rather than wasting £100K on QED South.

Equality is what you are looking at when you say that existing passengers will be inconvenienced if buses are stopped from travelling down QED South. The distances involved in walking to the Garsington Road or Tawny Owl stops from anywhere in Taw Hill are not great. People managed it for years before September 2011 and our school children still do. It is only passengers from Taw Hill that will be affected and for many of those there will be little or no change in the distance they have to walk to a bus stop. Passengers from outside Taw Hill will actually benefit from the change as their journey times will decrease. At the end of the day the Swindon public voted equality last and the other matters should not therefore be being ignored in its favour. A small sacrifice and a little extra walking by a few bus passengers will see safety and quality of life for the majority increase. It will see a reduction in carbon emissions and if the same policy is adopted elsewhere by a more enlightened Council and bus companies, the economic competitiveness of the Town will be increased. Is this not what equality is all about.? This is what the people of Swindon voted for - please check the Local Transport Plan if you doubt me - democracy demands that it now be delivered.
If you want somebody to blame for bus users being incovenienced you need look no further than SBC. At the closing of a meeting on the 18th October 2013 at the Civic Office about QED South the Managing Director of Thamesdown Transport was heard to tell the Leader of SBC words to the effect of 'don't go building any more roads like that.' The use of this language is very revealing and accurately reflects what is going on in North Swindon in general. Thamesdown Transport freely admit that QED South is 'less than ideal' for use by buses and SBC freely admit that all of the problems caused by buses using the road are 'undesireable'. Health and Safety good practice has a hierarchy of action which requires identified risks to be eliminated wherever possible and thereafter managed if elimination is not possible. None of the risks caused by running buses down QED South were present prior to September 2011 and it is very possible to return to that position and eliminate the risk which have materialised. As alluded to by some contributors above, SBC have, for one reason or another, made a pigs-ear of distributor road building in North Swindon. QED South is just one example of this mess. It is not the residents of QED South who are to blame for this! In a survey of Swindon residents prior to the creation the SBC Local Transport Plan (2011-2025) they were asked to vote on five criteria laid down in the Depratment of Transport's 'Developing a Sustainable Transport System (2008)'.'The public of Swindon voted 'Safety' as their top priority. Next came 'Quality of Life', then 'reducing Carbon emissions', then 'Economic Competitveness' and finally 'Equality.' 'Safety' is not being promoted by running buses along estate roads which are 'less then ideal' and lead to 'undesireable' consequences. The sort of road which cause the Head of Thamesdown Transport to tell the Leader of SBC 'not to build any more like it!' It is not being promoted where risks that should and can be eliminated are being allowed to continue. Where chances are being taken with road safety! Quality of Life is not being promoted by running buses along roads unfit for their use which see motorists having to dive into driveway entrance to avoid oncoming buses and screech to a halt as buses come round roundabout at them the wrong way. It is not promoted by the constant ripping up of grass verges and the pollution and noise that 516 bus journeys per week produce. Many of those journeys being by buses which are virtually empty. Carbon emissions are not being reduced by running buses along estate roads which are unfit for their use where they are having to make longer journeys and stop and start more frequently, when Thamesdown Drive provides an ideal and rapid transit route which will bring those emissions to a minimum. Economic Competitveness is promoted by producing a rapid transit transport system which see buses taking passengers into the centre of Swindon as quickly as possible. If you can get into Swindon quickly by bus many more people will ditch the car and use public transport. More people and businesses will be attracted to Swindon as a result. The milk train approach through estates on unfit roads does not achieve this aim. Priority needs to given to building the Thamesdown Drive extension to meet up with Great Western Way and removing other bottle necks on the major Swindon arteries rather than wasting £100K on QED South. Equality is what you are looking at when you say that existing passengers will be inconvenienced if buses are stopped from travelling down QED South. The distances involved in walking to the Garsington Road or Tawny Owl stops from anywhere in Taw Hill are not great. People managed it for years before September 2011 and our school children still do. It is only passengers from Taw Hill that will be affected and for many of those there will be little or no change in the distance they have to walk to a bus stop. Passengers from outside Taw Hill will actually benefit from the change as their journey times will decrease. At the end of the day the Swindon public voted equality last and the other matters should not therefore be being ignored in its favour. A small sacrifice and a little extra walking by a few bus passengers will see safety and quality of life for the majority increase. It will see a reduction in carbon emissions and if the same policy is adopted elsewhere by a more enlightened Council and bus companies, the economic competitiveness of the Town will be increased. Is this not what equality is all about.? This is what the people of Swindon voted for - please check the Local Transport Plan if you doubt me - democracy demands that it now be delivered. V4CSOI
  • Score: 0

10:25am Tue 11 Feb 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

To V4CSOI,

I don't have an particular opinion on the buses using QED, but I do take issue with one thing you say - if car drivers are having to "screech to a halt", they're almost certainly driving too fast. Given that it's likely many of those cars have drivers living in the area you'd have thought they'd know there are potentially buses driving along the road and so therefore would drive with a little more care?
To V4CSOI, I don't have an particular opinion on the buses using QED, but I do take issue with one thing you say - if car drivers are having to "screech to a halt", they're almost certainly driving too fast. Given that it's likely many of those cars have drivers living in the area you'd have thought they'd know there are potentially buses driving along the road and so therefore would drive with a little more care? The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man
  • Score: 1

12:40pm Tue 11 Feb 14

V4CSOI says...

To Artist formally known as Grump Old Man

Point taken -my mistake - for "screec h to a halt" please read "brake suddenly" - if your faced with a 14.4T bus travel down the centre of the road at you and your both going at 20mph you have a closing speed of 40mph and not much time to get out of the way. Those of us who live here witness cars dodging out of the way onto driveway entrances or being forced to stop all of the time. The point is that cars travelling on their own side of the road should not have to take evasive action to avoid buses using the road - if they do then the road is too narrow and unfit for habitual use by buses - other available, safe, alternative, efficient and effective bus routes need to be used.
To Artist formally known as Grump Old Man Point taken -my mistake - for "screec h to a halt" please read "brake suddenly" - if your faced with a 14.4T bus travel down the centre of the road at you and your both going at 20mph you have a closing speed of 40mph and not much time to get out of the way. Those of us who live here witness cars dodging out of the way onto driveway entrances or being forced to stop all of the time. The point is that cars travelling on their own side of the road should not have to take evasive action to avoid buses using the road - if they do then the road is too narrow and unfit for habitual use by buses - other available, safe, alternative, efficient and effective bus routes need to be used. V4CSOI
  • Score: 0

12:47pm Tue 11 Feb 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

V4CSOI wrote:
To Artist formally known as Grump Old Man

Point taken -my mistake - for "screec h to a halt" please read "brake suddenly" - if your faced with a 14.4T bus travel down the centre of the road at you and your both going at 20mph you have a closing speed of 40mph and not much time to get out of the way. Those of us who live here witness cars dodging out of the way onto driveway entrances or being forced to stop all of the time. The point is that cars travelling on their own side of the road should not have to take evasive action to avoid buses using the road - if they do then the road is too narrow and unfit for habitual use by buses - other available, safe, alternative, efficient and effective bus routes need to be used.
Good job you don't live in the country if you think QED is too narrow!
[quote][p][bold]V4CSOI[/bold] wrote: To Artist formally known as Grump Old Man Point taken -my mistake - for "screec h to a halt" please read "brake suddenly" - if your faced with a 14.4T bus travel down the centre of the road at you and your both going at 20mph you have a closing speed of 40mph and not much time to get out of the way. Those of us who live here witness cars dodging out of the way onto driveway entrances or being forced to stop all of the time. The point is that cars travelling on their own side of the road should not have to take evasive action to avoid buses using the road - if they do then the road is too narrow and unfit for habitual use by buses - other available, safe, alternative, efficient and effective bus routes need to be used.[/p][/quote]Good job you don't live in the country if you think QED is too narrow! The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man
  • Score: 0

4:06pm Tue 11 Feb 14

V4CSOI says...

To The Artist formerly Grumpy Old Man

There is often no alternative viable route to avoid narrow roads in the Country - if there was I would expect a responsible bus company to take the safer route.
To The Artist formerly Grumpy Old Man There is often no alternative viable route to avoid narrow roads in the Country - if there was I would expect a responsible bus company to take the safer route. V4CSOI
  • Score: 0

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