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A646 Corridor Improvement Project

From Mike S

Sunday, 22 July 2018

Councillor Dave Young announced the following schemes for the Calder Valley as part of the A646 corridor improvement project:

  • Introduction of new signalised junction to replace existing priority junction at A646 / Commercial Street. 
  • Removal of signals at A646 / Bridge Gate / Holme Street to change to a priority junction.
  • Reconfiguration of A646 / Albert Street signalised junction, removing access to parking for flats. 
  • Cycle provision at Heptonstall Road 
  • Removal of parking bays at Market Street – which may prove very controversial 
  • Introduction of Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) on A646 east of Station Road. 
  • Travel hub in Hebden Bridge, on Crown Street. 
  • Improvements to Keighley Road (A6033) up to Duck Hill. 
  • Resurfacing of Canal Towpath from Hebden Bridge to Todmorden.

The West Yorkshire Combined Authority provides no information about these, other than construction will start in late 2019. 

Some of the proposals might seem controversial, such as Market Street parking, access to Albert Street flats and access to and from Holme Street during rush hour. 

I also wonder what the TRO on the A646 will be. If this is to restrict parking for the station users, what will be the alternatives for them?

From Cllr Dave Young

Monday, 23 July 2018

Public Engagement for these proposed schemes are being planned for August and September, over a 6 week period. Dates still to be confirmed.

There will be a drop in session and an online portal showing the proposals for the schemes and the public will be invited to have their say in the form of a survey.

The feedback will be co llated and included as part of the invitation to tender to take the schemes to the next stage of the process – detailed design and Full Business Case production, where the proposals can be amended if necessary based on feedback i.e. there is still the potential for the proposals to be amended or removed from the package of works.

From Paul Rigg

Monday, 23 July 2018

Could someone advise what a "travel hub" is and what effect it will have on Crown Street?

And while we're on the subject what about issuing a Section 58 notice when the work is finished  for the whole length from Todmorden to King Cross?  This would have the effect of preventing utility companies from digging up the road for three years.

I think it's time we had some peace in that direction.

From Gary W

Monday, 23 July 2018

The filthy dangerous life shortening fumes pumped out of cars /vans /trucks /buses has resulted in Market Street suffering some of the worst levels of air pollution in the area.

Any action that can be taken to improve the flow of traffic through Market St (and thus reduce the levels of pollution) will be welcomed by all those that put the health of residents above the convenience of being able to park in a certain area. It will speed up journey times and show that the Council is serious about tackling air pollution.  

From Mike S

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Thank you Cllr Dave. I see the public consultation mentioned after the Mytholmroyd proposals, which I did not read. Where will we find the on-line portal and details of the drop in sessions?

For others, the news article was in the Hebden Bridge Times.

Paul – the Mytholmroyd bus hot spots section refers to a hub as follows. "Helping to increase bus patronage – A beautiful, bespoke shelter or 'hub' increases attractiveness of bus use. This will provide rail and tourist information and be a centre piece for Mytholmroyd". There are a lot more benefits detailed in the article, which I assume will apply to the HB hub as well.

Hopefully, the proposed works will remove the bottlenecks on Market Street, the A646 east of the train station and Keighley Road, all caused by parked vehicles.

From Graham Barker

Wednesday, 25 July 2018

I doubt if removing parking on Market Street will significantly improve traffic flow or air quality unless the three bus stops, two zebra crossings and the Fox & Goose lights are removed as well. It will harm businesses on Market Street if they're not allowed any daytime deliveries or pick-ups, and anyone trying to cross may be at greater risk if traffic speeds up. (The zebra at the Co-op is already considered optional by many drivers.)

Better for traffic flow and air quality would be to tunnel through from the Co-op to Bankfoot. Or turn Bridge Lanes into a ravine. Either way the junction with Heptonstall Road would go over the top, so wins all round. It's a thought…

From Janice S

Saturday, 28 July 2018

As it will be some time before the A646/Commercial St junction is improved, can I make a plea on behalf of the pedestrians who have to cross here? It's very difficult for all pedestrians (but especially wheelchair users, pushchairs, children and partially sighted people) to cross the road here. It would help if drivers would use their indicators so pedestrians would know if they are turning, and also if drivers could be on the lookout for pedestrians waiting to cross and leave time/space for them to cross.

From David Shepherd

Saturday, 28 July 2018

That's all just basic common sense. As in the, errm, Highway Code. The problem is not the complex junction, it's the drivers...

From Graham Barker

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Janice is right though, the Commercial Street junction is several hazards rolled into one at busy times, and pedestrians can easily become unseen by impatient drivers wanting to turn right. That and not indicating may all be driver failings but that’s no consolation to the pedestrians on the wrong end of them.

What concerns me about the list of proposed changes is that the word ‘pedestrian’ doesn’t appear. It’s all about traffic flow, not people flow. For example, what will happen to the pedestrian crossing at Holme Street/Bridge Gate when signals are removed? And what does ‘priority junction’ even mean? 

From Janice S

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

I agree, Graham Barker. I've lived overlooking this junction for 30 years now so I see a lot of the problems and dangers that pedestrians face. There are many good, considerate drivers but many more who don't abide by the rules of the road.

The improvements to traffic flow may reduce air pollution and may make drivers less stressed and impatient, but I hope it's not at the expense of pedestrian safety. If it is decided that traffic lights are needed at this junction, it will affect me significantly as they will probably be right outside my house. However, I can live with this provided that pedestrians benefit.

How can we expect people to commute or visit Hebden Bridge by train when they cannot safely cross at the Commercial Street junction? Yes, there is the route through Calder Holmes but this is no help to many commuters and to my neighbours who have to cross here.

Maybe we need a box junction on the A646, maybe a lollypop man/woman at busy times; certainly we need highly visible road markings which remind drivers that pedestrians cross here. 

From Martyn Fiveash

Thursday, 23 August 2018

How have the Council come to the decision that moving crossings & traffic lights to slightly different locations is going to improve safety. 

The idea of lights at the Commercial Street Junction on the A646 immediately followed on Commercial Street by a crossing doesn't appear to me likely to improve safety.

The proposed left turn for cyclists coming down Heptonstall Road on Market Street seems an impossibility given the narrow pavement opposite the Fox & Goose. 

The general disruption to traffic locally, after 20 months of roadworks in Mytholmroyd, by these minor changes to the locations of lights and pedestrian crossings, will just cause further delays & increase pollution levels in Central Hebden. 

The new access onto the A646 from the flats by at the back of Albert Street will just add another hazard for motorists. 
Buses parked for long periods on Albert Street will just make this road more congested and reduce parking. Reducing parking has a negative impact on local shops. 

Wouldn't it have been worth considering making both Commercial Street and Albert Street one way considering both are narrow and Albert Street will have buses parked on it.

Will all these minor changes really improve road safety or will it just create further road delays while swallowing up a lot of ratepayers' money for no good reason.