Bay petition leads to busy Lancaster road reopening

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The lane closure which hit Lancaster with severe traffic jams has been reversed, as a result of pressure applied to Lancashire County Council through a petition run by The Bay.

A traffic jam following the closure.
A traffic jam following the closure.

More than 1,700 motorists signed the petition over the last three days, leading the council's highways team to fully reopen Caton Road.

The authority has also announced a public consultation on how best to handle future lane closures, which will also look at helping nearby student accommodation project progress while causing minimal disruption.

The Bay's campaign was supported by the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce and the Lancaster and Morecambe Business Improvement Districts.

Lancashire County Council's member for Skelmersdale East, John Phillis, visited The Bay's studio to talk about the situation.

He said: "Quite clearly things that should have been done hadn't been done. The council has listened and is pleased to announce that the roadworks will be taken away this afternoon.

"The whole routing situation will be reviewed in consultation with the local community. All that's down to the campaign being run by The Bay, because without you raising it, none of us would have got to know [about the problems] until much further down the line."

Mr Phillis was joined by Morecambe councillor Margaret Pattison, who added: "People in this local area are absolutely fed up of sitting in traffic, so I saw The Bay's campaign and thought 'we need to support this' so I got in touch with the county councillors and local councillors and they've all supported us."

Restrictions were lifted late this afternoon..

The Bay's campaign was also supported by both of North Lancashire's MPs.

Lancaster's MP Cat Smith said: "I'd like to thank The Bay for organising the petition, but also the almost two-thousand people who took the time to sign that petition. This is a victory for people power in Lancaster and I'm ever so pleased.

"To see that land regenerated I'm really pleased about, but it needs to be the case that the developer works with the local community to ensure that notice is given when there's going to be lane closures."

Morecambe MP David Morris said: "It's always the case, whenever there's any development in Lancaster the city becomes a car park. The Bay yet again has proven that local radio is a very powerful voice and the county council has listened."

An official statement from Lancashire County Council followed, which read: "The lane closure on Caton Road was agreed for safety to allow for work to the retaining wall as part of new development taking place to build student accommodation on the adjacent site.

"The wall is to be taken down and moved back to allow construction of a lower wall, and footway to create better pedestrian access in this area.

"In light of the impact on traffic we have reviewed the closure which had been agreed, and the lane closure will be taken off today while we consider measures to minimise disruption while this work takes place.

"We will consult with all interested parties before any further closure is agreed."

Monday, July 10, 2017 at 5:24PM
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