Decision Maker: Climate, Biodiversity & Planning
Decision status: For Determination
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
The Committee received and considered consultation documents from Oxfordshire County Council concerning an active travel corridor route between Tower Hill and Madley Park, Witney.
As an enthusiastic supporter of active travel, members welcomed this report and were pleased that previous suggestions and lobbying on this issue had been heard.
Overall, the committee felt the plans could have been more wide-ranging but understood that these were limited, short term measures that had to be implemented relatively quickly due to funding timescales. The proposals encompassed a raft of modifications, including reduced speed limits, shared pavements, extra crossings and new cycle paths along the whole route which, it was agreed would improve safety and make a difference in this part of Witney.
The members discussed at length the varying sections of the corridor and provided comments on each area which forms part of the Council’s response below.
1. That Witney Town Council welcomes this consultation on an active travel corridor from East to West Witney and acknowledges the timescales involved in implementing the measures. It would like to make the following observations concerning each section.
Tower Hill – Corn Street
The Town Council accepts the positive moves here overall and acknowledges that nothing will be perfect; it is regrettable but likely necessary to lose parking spaces to achieve the cycle lanes. The Town Council supports the measures to reduce traffic into Holloway Road, the addition of a controlled crossing near to Marlborough Lane, the 20mph scheme, the central line in the hope of making vehicle users drive safely, and the cycle and bus lane at the start of Corn Street. After discussion on the merits of the build outs and the way they contribute to pedestrian safety, it agreed that ultimately, there simply needs to be enough space for the scheme here to be successful and safe.
There may be some future merit in extending the one-way system in Corn Street and improving the crossings to assist cyclists at the five ways roundabout.
Corn Street – Langel Common
Witney Town Council supports the proposals in this section of the corridor and accepts they marginally improve what is currently in place. It would however ask that consideration is given to extending the 20mph zones on the approach to the crossing on Witan Way to improve safety and ask that the crossing itself is modified for cyclists, so they do not need to dismount. An improved long-term solution for travel from Witan Way to Corn Street would be welcomed.
Church Lane - Oxford Hill – Madley Park
The Town Council welcomes the inclusion of a toucan crossing at Oxford Hill, the upgrading of gravel tracks to laid foot/cycle paths and the increased lighting in certain stretches of this section.
Consideration should be given to a 20mph zone in the vicinity of King George’s Field to Judd’s Close as this stretch of road is well- used route for Wood Green School students. The route is likely to become used even further with the development in east Witney. There would also be some benefit in bringing the cycle crossing point to as near as possible to Church Lane it would almost be straight across the road. The Town Council also feels that priority for lighting priority needs to be by the allotment gardens, between the bridges for night-time security as the footpath away from buildings near the wooded area will not be as safe, even if lit.
2. That these comments be forwarded to Oxfordshire County Council in response to the Witney Active Travel Scheme Consultation.
Publication date: 26/01/2021
Date of decision: 26/01/2021
Decided at meeting: 26/01/2021 - Climate, Biodiversity & Planning