Residents living on Craven Way in Barrs Court say the volume, speed and weight of traffic using the road has reached “saturation point” and there are fears there may be a serious or even fatal accident.
Anne Sheppard wrote to The Week In to say that there are no traffic calming measures on the section of road where she lives – the Warmley end – and that the health and safety of residents, including a local blind couple, is being put at “severe risk”.
She and her husband Alan say the only time they can hope to get any peace and quiet is between 1am and 5am.
She told us: “The main issue in our lives and those of our neighbours is the volume and speed of traffic on Craven Way. We live at the opposite end of Craven Way from Asda – opposite Kennmoor Close.
“We moved into our house in 1984 and in the time we have lived here the road has become so busy that we feel it is now one of the busiest in Bristol.”
In the past Mrs Sheppard has been in contact with Kingswood MP Chris Skidmore about the problem. He got in touch with South Gloucestershire Council’s highways department and was told by principal engineer Mark Parry that there were already traffic calming measures on the eastern section, including coloured surfacing treatment at the junction of Wraxall Road and several narrowings along the length of Craven Way.
She wrote back to say Mr Parry’s assumptions were incorrect and reiterated that there were no narrowings at her end of Craven Way.
Recently Mrs Sheppard and her husband Alan responded to a survey from Jo McCarron, who will be standing for Labour at next year’s General Election. She asked people living in the area what the issues were and has had a meeting with Mrs Sheppard and her neighbours to see what can be done, and there is talk of starting a petition.
Mrs Sheppard said: “We feel that urgent action needs to be taken in respect of the volume of traffic on this road. In addition to the volume of traffic, we have very heavy vehicles using the road. The road is not wide enough to cope with this and is already dipping in places.”
The couple are also concerned about possible damage to foundations of their home and say local property values are being affected.
She feels it would ease traffic considerably if the road was made one way: “We currently have traffic from Wraxall Road, the other end of Craven Way, the ring road and Tower Road coming onto our road.”
Other suggestions that have been raised include a lower speed limit and speed ‘pillows’.
The Sheppards’ neighbour Rebecca Garrett said: “The increased volume and size of vehicles needs to be addressed and safer traffic calming measures must be prioritised. The chicanes cause cars to speed up and makes the roads unsafe to cross. Traffic queuing, increased amounts of car fumes and aggressive behaviour have become the norm here.
“We cross Craven Way to take the children to school which we have found easier by the roundabout – the number of drivers on their mobile phones, not indicating and speeding on to Craven Way is shocking. There will be a serious accident one day soon.”
Laura Bull, of Kennmoor Close, whose home backs on to Craven Way, said: “There are times that we try to avoid leaving the street as it’s near impossible to get out with the queue for the chicane going past one way and the queue for the ‘wonky’ roundabout and on up to the A4174 ring road. Bus stops immediately opposite the turning and straight away on the left add to the problem. I’ve been stuck for at least 10 minutes on numerous occasions.”
Recently it was announced that there would be a review of the chicanes further along Craven Way which have been blamed for increasing traffic congestion and road rage. Parkwall ward councillors Nick Barrett and Tony Olpin said in other parts of South Gloucestershire chicanes had been replaced with speed tables, which cause less congestion but still slow drivers and help to make crossing the road safer.