A section of Trent Lane from its junction with the A6097 Gunthorpe Bridge is to be closed off to motor vehicles in spring 2019 to assess whether this measure reduces the volume of traffic going through East Bridgford.
The go-ahead to introduce what’s known as an Experimental Traffic Regulation (ETRO) relating to a 300m stretch of the lane was given today (Thursday, 6 December) by Nottinghamshire County Council’s Communities and Place Committee at its last meeting before Christmas
Trent Lane is a narrow, rural road that provides access to a small number of businesses including a marina, mobile home park, sewage works and a number of agricultural fields and is currently the link between the A6097 close to Gunthorpe Bridge and East Bridgford.
Committee chairman Councillor John Cottee said: “The proposal has come about in response to concerns which have been raised about the volume and speed of traffic using the lane.
“The route is popular with drivers looking to avoid northwest bound queues on the A6097. And the parish council tells us that increasing numbers of drivers leave the A46 and cut through the village along Butt Lane, Main Street and Trent Lane to get to the A6097 by turning right onto Gunthorpe Bridge – this shortcut avoids the Kirk Hill/A6097 traffic signalled junction and the roundabouts at the A46T/A6097.”
Traffic surveys show that westbound usage of Trent Lane from East Bridgford to the A6097 in the afternoon rush hour has nearly doubled since 2013; resulting in increased turning manoeuvres onto or off the busy A6097.
“It’s therefore considered that the use of an experimental order to alter traffic movements is the most appropriate course of action so that the effects of the restriction can be properly evaluated,” added Coun Cottee.
A previous proposal to close a one-way section of Trent Lane in an easterly direction proved unfeasible.
A Road Safety Audit has been carried out for the revised scheme which includes a barrier at the Trent Lane/A6097 Gunthorpe Bridge junction which would physically prevent vehicles from turning in or out of the lane. And a second barrier will be installed at the eastern end of the restriction.
There will still be vehicle access to farmland within the restricted area from this point for key holders. And a through route for pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders onto Gunthorpe Bridge will be retained with gaps in the barriers to allow for this.
Access for all motorised traffic onto and along Trent Lane to the eastern closure point will be retained via East Bridgford village centre.
Informal consultation has taken place with the local county councillor, parish council and emergency services with no objections arising from any of them regarding the proposed road closure and the introduction of an ETRO.
Coun Cottee explained: “An ETRO, rather than a permanent order, provides us with the opportunity to assess the impact of the closure and, if required, make changes.
“It’s a cost-effective solution to assess the concerns raised locally about the increase in through-traffic in the village. We want to monitor the effects of the closure and make it permanent if it’s considered appropriate.”
The ETRO won’t affect bus services as they use the Kirk Hill junction to gain access to and from East Bridgford via the A6097.
The ETRO would be introduced for up to 18 months with evaluation being carried out during the first 12 months of this period to enable the council to gather further traffic data and people’s views of the scheme to determine the impact of the changes on routes within the village and on the A6097.
Written objections to the scheme can be made during the first six months of the order being made and these would be considered using the same process agreed for the introduction of permanent traffic regulation orders.