Bond End residents say £200,000 not enough to solve Knaresborough's problem junction

Bond End residents have claimed that the £200,000 funding is not enough to solve air pollution and congestion at Knaresborough's most problematic junction.

Thursday, 2nd February 2017, 9:04 am
Updated Thursday, 2nd February 2017, 9:06 am
Bond End has been a problem junction for years.

North Yorkshire County Council is holding a public consultation until February 9 with seven potential options to reduce traffic congestion at Bond End.

However only two of the seven options in the consultation are being progressed, despite one of them having been suggested to the council more than three years ago.

Brian Robinson, Bond End resident of more than 20 years, came up with proposals for two mini-roundabouts at the junction after he realised that the traffic lights were the main cause of congestion.

Sign up to our daily Harrogate Advertiser Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

He said: "It was a light bulb moment three years ago last October. When the lights are off it all flows, and knowing that certain pieces of land belonged to the authorities they could use that available land to widen it and take all the traffic lights out and put two mini roundabouts which would ease congestion and in turn reduce pollution.

"I drew up quite a comprehensive well reasoned and accurate scale plan and took it to the councillors.

"They are doing a consultation and the one I proposed is not being progressed which I think is sad because I still think it's the best one."

Mr Robinson, who has a background in design, also suggested that the £200,000 worth of funding allocated to address Bond End was not enough to solve the problem.

He said: “This shouldn’t be a case of we have only got so much money this should done no matter what it costs.

“I think it’s too little, I think they need to put more money to it, we have got an MP who is now a Transport Minister. I think it needs more money.”

“I have never declared that what I suggested was the ultimate answer if someone has a better idea then great. The bypass should have been finished that’s the real answer.

“It may be that the decision has already been made and they are just going through the mechanics of what has to be done, we just don’t know.

But NYCC Executive Member for Highways, Councillor Don Mackenzie, explained that the option may not be as suitable in practice as it seems in theory.

Coun Mackenzie said: “The steering group have to, to an extent rely upon the professional advice from our consultants Mouchel and our highways officers.

“You would think two mini roundabouts without traffic lights could work fairly well and another resident has pointed out that two mini roundabouts seem to work quite well near Hookstone School but they are two entirely different locations.

“The problem we could have with two mini roundabouts is if one of the two roundabouts is busier than the other, and with no traffic lights to control the traffic flow, we could have long tailbacks on one of the arms of the roundabout.

“Our highways consultants may well see a problem and that could be why they are saying it should not be progressed.”

Councillor Mackenzie also disputed the claim that the funding for the project was insufficient and suggested the council had looked hard to find the money.

“As far as the money goes, £200,000 is a fairly substantial amount of public money and we have had to look into two funding budgets to find that funding for this.

“There is also the option of getting funding from the developers of houses which could cause even more traffic to go through Knaresborough but this isn’t a funding issue I don’t think.

“This is about getting the traffic management right and getting the standing traffic moving at this junction.”