Letter: Road improvements are on the way

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I refer to recent letters outlining readers’ concerns about the efficiency of the traffic signals at the Ripon Road, Kings Road, Parliament Street and Crescent Road junction.

I agree that they have not been performing at maximum effectiveness. The highways team are fully aware of the problems and engineers have been working to overcome them.

This work involves the introduction of a new Urban Transport Management Control (UTMC) system for Harrogate which will be able to be accessed remotely to allow engineers to coordinate traffic flows at all town centre junctions.

Furthermore, this consolidation will provide the opportunity to adapt certain sites to operate under programmes like SCOOT (Split Cycle Offset Optimisation Technique, which allows several signalised junctions to respond in a coordinated way to changes in traffic flows), and MOVA (Microprocessor Optimisation Vehicle Actuated, which changes traffic light timings at a single junction depending on the volume of traffic approaching at any one time. This system is about to be fitted at the M&S junction on Leeds Road in an effort to reduce lines of traffic especially heading south by holding lights at green for as long as possible).

UTMC is a major investment on the part of North Yorkshire County Council to tackle the problems of congestion in the town centre and at other key junctions, and to maximise the efficiency of the existing highways network.

In short, I can assure readers that improvements are on the way and should begin to be evident in the very near future.

Don Mackenzie

Executive Member for 
Highways, NYCC