The ‘game-changing’ new park and ride due to be built on the outskirts of Arnold is set to feature its own access road, plans have revealed.
The new site will aim to tackle congestion on the A60, which has been described as ‘one of the most congested in the country’.
Plans have been drawn up for a new access road from the park and ride, which would speed up bus journeys and prevent the current roundabout becoming more congested.
However it is understood this has not yet received the funding needed.
Instead the £6 million which has been secured will be spent on: building the park and ride (£2.4 million); installing new bus lanes in Arnold and Bestwood (£2.3 million); and prioritising buses from the A60 Cross Street to Sir Robinson Way (£1.3 million).
The Redhill roundabout where the park and ride will be built joins the A60 (Mansfield Road) with the A614, which itself is due for a major upgrade, with six roundabouts further north receiving upgrades totalling £18 million.
Now, the park and ride scheme has received Government funding, as part of a £160 million funding package for more than 50 transport upgrades throughout Nottingham, Derby and Notts.
Among these are a new footbridge over the Trent, a £20 million worth of improvements for pedestrians and cyclists around the Broadmarsh, and a new cycle route from Derby to Nottingham.
Designs submitted to the Government as part of the successful bid show the new park and ride could be built in what is currently fields to the west of the roundabout.
If additional funding is secured, a new connecting road would then be built to the south, through more fields, before connecting with Bestwood Lodge Drive.
Whether or not the further funding is secured, significant improvements will be carried out on Queens Bower Road, including a new bus lane, and the traffic lights at the junction with Oxclose Lane would be altered to give buses priority.
One of the two lanes on Oxclose Lane would also be converted to a bus-only lane heading into the city, in an effort to further speed up journey times from the park and ride.
The plans are still at a relatively early stage, although the receipt of funding from the Government is a significant boost for the project.
Any of the £6 million which is not spent on the scheme is likely to have to be returned to the Government, known as clawback.
The deputy leader of Gedling Borough Council, councillor Michael Payne, has campaigned for the new park and ride for several years, and said he was ‘delighted’ with the development.
He wrote to transport secretary Grant Shapps back in November supporting the scheme, saying: “I’m very aware that local residents are extremely concerned about traffic related issues, particularly in relation to congestion on the A60 Mansfield Road from Daybrook through Redhill towards Leapool Island and I strongly believe these proposals will help address some of these concerns, just as they will have a positive impact for those travelling in and out of the borough and the wider Nottingham conurbation.”
Speaking about the award of the funding, he said: “Any investment to help reduce congestion, improve safety and improve air quality along the busy stretch of the A60 Mansfield Road through Redhill and Arnold is hugely welcome.
“The creation of a bus park and ride facility at Leapool Roundabout in Redhill will help boost the local economy and hopefully begin to alleviate severe congestion at peak times. “I’ve long argued for such investment and I’m pleased to see this project move one step closer to fruition.“I will continue to work with local residents in Redhill and Arnold to ensure their feedback and views are heard by the County Council as the finer details of the scheme are brought forward.”
Councillor John Cottee, is the highways chief at Nottinghamshire County Council and said: “We are delighted that the City Council has been successful in being awarded the Transforming Cities funding and we are looking forward to working with them to deliver real sustainable transport solutions for the people of Nottinghamshire.
“This package provides real transport alternatives and options for county residents on what is at best a very congested highway corridor.”
The leader of Gedling Borough Council John Clarke said he had first raised the issue with former transport secretary John Prescott back in the 90s.
He said: “We welcome the news of the approval of the Redhill Park and Ride following the campaigning from our deputy leader and others.
“One of the council’s main priorities is to promote a more sustainable environment in our borough, which includes improving infrastructure and connectivity.
“The council has provided funding for the Nottingham Transport Cities Fund to support projects, such as the new Redhill Park and Ride, that provide more sustainable transport links to reduce congestion and improve air quality in the borough.”Categories: Transport