Better Junctions for Routes to Schools

The council has been looking at new crossings and a tighter roundabout at Farringdon Road / Broadway / Mast Lane Cullercoats. This is something that we think is a great idea, it’s a key junction for routes to school with a history of collisions and at the moment a jumble of excess tarmac with cars turning every which way.

a satellite view of the roundabout with KSI collisions marked
Existing junction with pedestrian and cyclist injuries resulting from collisions

There’s a service road cycle route along the west side of the junction which has been the backbone of local networks for the last 80 years and is also a key route for pedestrians.

map from the propensity to cycle tool
Key routes to schools mapped by the governments PCT Tool

Although the council are looking at new crossings we think it’s about time junctions like this were redesigned to a long term vision, even if this gets implemented in stages. Here’s what we think could be done:

plan showing possible future design of roundabout
Indicative suggested solution

Doing something like this for real would obviously take a lot of thought and investigation and a lot of listening to people who live nearby. We are confident though that something like this is possible.

The council doesn’t yet have an adopted Walking an Cycling Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP) but we hope that there is room for such sites which are very important for school trips and journeys to local shops and facilities. After Covid places like this matter even more, it can’t all be about men travelling to business parks.

This would be a prime candidate to receive funding from Active Travel England and maybe we’ll flag it up to them?

People will see the similarities between what we’re suggesting here and what the council has built at Rake Lane. We’ve still got some reservations about the work going on there and will be reviewing the project once it has finished, but at Cullercoats it would be much easier for the council to get it 100% right.

One of the big problems in North Tyneside is the piecemeal way in which changes to the highway are often made. Time and again we see small changes which might be good things in themselves, but would need completely redoing if we ever upgrade our streets to make them truly fit for children to get around actively and independently. Now that long term funding for Active Travel is at last coming through it’s time for a different approach.

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