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Loading bays provoke controversy in busy road

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: November 20, 2012

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LOADING bays installed in Bath Road have created a dangerous bottleneck for passing traffic, claim some traders.

The concerns come after Gloucestershire Highways built the bays, which are enclosed by a pavement which juts out into the road.

Shop keepers said there had already been one accident and have warned unless something is done to alleviate the problem there could be more.

One trader, who asked to remain anonymous, said: "It is terrible. Within a week of it being installed, a vehicle collided with the post on the pavement.

"It has also created lots of queues because motorists are having to pass in single file, giving way to each other, whereas before they could pass in both directions."

The road has long been a problem area for parking, with people frequently stopping illegally on double yellow lines while they pop into the shops to pick up their groceries.

Paul Lewis, manager at the Natural Grocery Store, said the arrival of the loading bays had not been universally well received.

"It has been causing some problems since it came in," he said. "It's very much a bottleneck now.

"I haven't seen any accidents yet – just lots of beeping of horns. But it certainly looks like an error in planning to have that there.

"It is not helped by the fact you've got lots of people parking on double yellow lines which makes it narrower."

Chris Riley, local highways manager for the county council, said the bays had been introduced following consultation with traders.

He said: "The main aim is to improve pedestrian safety because loading and unloading vehicles had previously parked in a way that limited visibility for people crossing the road.

"Secondly, it will accommodate increased access to all nearby businesses for loading vehicles."

There are double yellow lines and a loading ban opposite the bays - enforced by Cheltenham Borough Council.

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  • vanmanvan  |  November 20 2012, 6:23PM

    Why have they put more parking spaces for shoppers where there were double yellow lines, shoppers always park in the "loading bay" area by sainsburys local forcing the big lorries delivering there to park further out in the road, a lot of shoppers cross on the pelican crossing by the post office but only a few use the one by adcocks but most shoppers cross the road wherever they fancy. As a van driver i now avoid Bath Rd because its not wide enough and the pavements jutting out into the road are dangerous and only encourage shoppers not to use the pelican crossings.

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  • TIMONLINE2010  |  November 20 2012, 4:58PM

    It's beggars belief that the council took so long and spent so much money on this exercise which was apparently endorsed by local traders and residents and has now been proved to be a complete shambles. Who is going to pay for this mistake?! Why call them loading bays when they are just used by lazy shoppers?!

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  • phil573  |  November 20 2012, 11:11AM

    Completely unnecessary, there are already plenty of places for pedestrians to cross, not sure how encouraging people to cross a busy road in places with no crossing helps safety. Even during the day the pavement/crossing sticks out so far that if you have a few trucks or buses coming down bath road it becomes single file.

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  • galopede  |  November 20 2012, 9:49AM

    It juts so far into the road, they have had to stand a warning sign on it! OK when the road is busy and traffic is moving slowly apart from the chaos it causes but very dangerous at night when you don't see it until the last moment.

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