A MOTION is set to go before tonight’s council meeting calling for a report to be carried out, looking at ways to improve the Moonrakers Roundabout.
The junction on Cricklade Road is a regular source of frustration for drivers as the double roundabout, opposite the Moonrakers Pub, acts as a bottleneck for traffic going to and from the town centre.
Now a local councillor has said it is time for options to be evaluated on how to improve the junction so when the time comes it can be improved, a move supported by council leaders.
Coun Joe Tray (Lab, Penhill and Upper Stratton) will request that council officers and road planning experts take a look at what is best for the vital route into Swindon.
He said: “For many years the Moonrakers roundabout has caused drivers all sorts of problems. Residents know that during the evening and afternoon rush hours it is a no go area.
“Since the closure of the park and ride there is a bus lane which is now very rarely used which does not help. Then there are confusing lanes meaning drivers are left cutting into lanes which holds everything up.
“Cricklade Road is such an important route into Swindon and it makes no sense to have a confusing junction.”
Coun Tray says that over the years there have been a number of suggestions as to how to solve the problem which have never come off, so now is the time to at least have a solution.
He said: “We have had everything from traffic lights suggested to a fly-over but nothing has happened. There is a lot of talk about the roads in other parts of the town but we seem to be forgotten over here.
“I am not calling for vast sums of money to be spent because I know money is tight but if we can at least get something together so when the funds do become available we know we have something to move forward with.”
Those in the area have backed up the calls for something to be done. Satnam Bains, the manager of Clivey and Twist, which for many years was based opposite the roundabout says small knocks between cars were a regular occurence.
He said: “I regularly saw plenty of incidents of road rage from drivers and small knocks between cars. Something really should be done because the problems it causes happen every day.
“Hopefully if these plans are drawn up then something can be done on the issue.”
The cabinet member for transport, Coun Keith Williams (Con, Shaw) says the council is aware of the problems created by the junction and will support the motion.
He said: “There have been reports going back as far as 2005 which have highlighted this junction.
“When it comes to road issues it has been the case that fixing safety issues has taken priority over congestion, which is as it should be.
“I am more than happy to support this. We are aware of the problems it causes drivers and this should not be a party political issue.”