Letter: More woes at Leeds Road junction in Harrogate

tis  Traffic into Harrogate on Leeds Road.  (140205M4b)

tis Traffic into Harrogate on Leeds Road. (140205M4b)

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Last Saturday I drove to York where I saw contractors busy working on the road improvements for York’s new “park and ride” facility.

Last Saturday I drove to York where I saw contractors busy working on the road improvements for York’s new “park and ride” facility.

I note also that the resurfacing scheduled to take place in Skipton Road is to be done at night. Meanwhile the good people of Harrogate continue to be grossly inconvenienced by the roadworks at Leeds Road junction. The site falls silent after 5pm each weekday evening and there is not a person to be seen working there at weekends.

HM Government website contains the following guidance:

Section 56 of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 allows an authority to direct an undertaker to carry out works at certain times, but only if they believe that the work is likely to cause serious traffic disruption.

Authorities need to exercise discretion in the use of this power and cannot direct work to be done at specific times if this conflicts with restrictions on noise or other nuisance. It may be that works cause least disruption to traffic if they are carried out at night or weekends.

So why did the planning and highways authorities not use this law?

Of course, they might have been persuaded otherwise by the developer - night and weekend working costs extra. So we will now end up with a junction that has no facilities for cyclists, could have had an extra traffic lane if a small piece of land had been shaved off the development site, and which would have been completed far sooner if those in charge in local government had insisted on a plan which minimised the time taken to complete the works.

Is it too much to ask that those responsible for this debacle take note next time a development of this kind is proposed?

Russell Davidson

Leadhall Lane,

Harrogate