Wednesday 21 February 2024
11 C
Nottingham

Over 1,800 sign petition to improve underpass for crossing the A52

There are increasing calls for action at a Nottingamshire road crossing where pedestrians risk ‘risking their lives’ when trying to cross the A52.

Councillors and residents say crossing the A52 between the Wheatcroft and Nottingham Knight roundabouts is too dangerous.

 

A petition to improve an existing underpass south of Sharphill Wood, has been signed by 1,823 people at the time of publishing.

Fields on the south side of the A52 enjoyed by walkers © westbridgfordwire.com
Fields on the south side of the A52 enjoyed by walkers
© westbridgfordwire.com

Highways England responded to the suggested improvements by saying they are “applying to their Designated Funds programme…in 2021-22″ and that they are “looking at all options for improving walking, cycling and horse-riding accessibility across the A52 between Nottingham Knight and Wheatcroft Roundabouts”.

Underpass underneath the A52 © westbridgfordwire.com
Underpass underneath the A52
© westbridgfordwire.com

Councillor Neil Clarke, who holds the Transport and Environment portfolio at Nottinghamshire County Council, said a fatal injury on the crossing can “always be a potential” until the crossing is improved.

A refuge used for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the A52 © westbridgfordwire.com
A refuge used for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the A52
© westbridgfordwire.com

He said: “The sooner we can try to eliminate the danger the better.

“If people can feel safe crossing underneath the road rather than crossing and playing dodgems with traffic, that’s always better for me.

Underpass underneath the A52 © westbridgfordwire.com
Underpass underneath the A52
© westbridgfordwire.com

“I have not crossed this road on foot, thankfully, and trying to cross it on a horse would fill me with absolute dread.

“With there being an underpass in place it means there is not going to be a horrendously expensive exercise.

Trees and shrubs cause blind spots for those crossing the A52 © westbridgfordwire.com
Trees and shrubs cause blind spots for those crossing the A52
© westbridgfordwire.com

“I’ve had comments from locals who always complain about the high speed but we have to bear in mind that it is a dual carriageway so it will always have dangerous traffic.

“That is why it is so important to separate people from the traffic.”

Hugh McClintock of Pedals, a local campaign group which pushes for a more cycle friendly city, said he would like to see the “dark and dingy” underpass to be upgraded with fresh paint and better lighting because some pedestrians are put off using it and instead try to cross the road on foot.

Underpass underneath the A52 © westbridgfordwire.com
Underpass underneath the A52
© westbridgfordwire.com

He said: “We have been campaigning for this for 20 years.

“People continue to feel intimidated when they want to cross roads like this. We’ve seen since lockdown the great benefit of exercise and people are very keen to hang on to that.

“People are angry, a lot of people have been asking in the last year or so that they want to go walking but find they can’t cross and the only place they can cross is too dangerous

“They want to know why they are hemmed in by these nasty and dangerous roads.”

Rushcliffe Conservative MP Ruth Edwards, who is backing the petition, said: “I don’t think any sensible person would want to use the existing crossing points. The speed of the traffic and the huge volume travelling back and forth mean that for walkers, cyclists and particularly for horse riders, the current setup is incredibly dangerous.

“I think the proposals to use the underpass as an alternative seem very sensible and I have raised this directly with Highways England.

“The campaign to improve safety when crossing this road has my full support and I would like to thank everyone involved for their hard work.”

The petition can be found here 

RELATED:

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