Posted: Sat 21st May 2016

Report Will Look At Possible Re-Opening Of Town Centre Streets To Traffic

This article is old - Published: Saturday, May 21st, 2016

A ‘much-anticipated’ report which looks at whether traffic could potentially return to some of Bridgend town centre in the future is set to be discussed by the Cabinet of Bridgend County Borough Council. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The report, which will go before the Cabinet on 7 June, follows requests from local businesses and organisations such as Bridgend Town Council for the local authority to investigate whether it would be safe for traffic to be fully or partially reintroduced. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

A study was commissioned and has been carried out by independent experts which has focused on Queen Street, Market Street and Dunraven Place. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

It has taken a range of factors into account including pre and post-pedestrianisation collision data analysis, risk assessments, the specific needs of different types of pedestrians and road users, what sort of changes might be required for parking and loading bays, signage and road lining, pedestrian crossing points, the availability of suitable funding to carry out work and more. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The Cabinet will discuss all of this at their meeting on 7 June. Officers will be recommending that the report is subject to a full public consultation so that a full assessment can be made of the public’s view on the issue. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Depending on the Cabinet’s decision and the outcome of any consultation, a statutory process would need to be applied before any changes could be made so that the town centre’s existing Traffic Order could be amended. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

External funding would also need to be sourced for the work and any adaptations that might be required. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Councillor Charles Smith, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, said: “In line with traders’ wishes, the Cabinet of Bridgend County Borough Council made a promise to look at whether traffic could be safely re-introduced to some of Bridgend town centre’s pedestrianised streets, and a thorough and comprehensive independent study into the matter was duly commissioned. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“I’m pleased that this has been concluded and that the findings of that study are now ready to be reported to the next meeting of Cabinet. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“It has been important to get this process right because of the potential implications that a possible re-introduction of traffic on pedestrianised streets could have, especially for public safety, so we are treating it with the seriousness and significance that it deserves. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“I know that this report has been much anticipated, and the Cabinet will be carefully considering its findings in full so that balanced, informed decisions can be made.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

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