The Campaign has consulted with it’s members on the Traffic Signal Asset Renewal (TSAR) proposals for the junction of Barbican Road and Paragon Street, as shown in drawing CYC_TST-YK2230-P-001 revision (P01), which was shared to the Campaign for consultation.
The proposal to introduce a more compact junction with dedicated cycle facilities is generally welcomed and seen as an improvement on the current arrangement. Members have raised some comments regarding concerns with parts of the proposal, and suggestions as to how the proposal could further be improved. We have summarised the comments received below, organised by the arms of the junction.
Paragon Street (western arm)
Whilst only included within the TSAR scheme at junction end, a number of the comments related to the cyclepath along Paragon Road in its entirety.
A concern of members was the quality of the cycle path along Paragon Road. They reported issues with the maintenance of the vegetation alongside encroaching onto the track, and that it needs to be better maintained to make the path attractive to use.
Another concern was that whilst the path is marked as a cycle path along its length to the crossing at Lendal gyratory, it is often used by pedestrians which then causes conflict and confusion when they aren’t aware that cycles will be using it. There was understanding as to why people might think that the route is a footpath rather than a cycle path, due to its location further away from the road and the paving style also matching the pedestrianised area in front of the hotel and theatre, whilst the footpath is plain asphalt.
The suggestion is made that the allocation along the route is swapped, so the cycle path follows the road edge and footpath is set further in. This will benefit any future development on the vacant site that will likely have an active frontage onto Paragon Street which would currently conflict with the cycle path. This allocation would mean a redesign of the currently proposed junction layout.
Going straight ahead onto Barbican Road (eastbound)
It’s been raised by members that the current junction layout doesn’t provide facility for cyclists who have been cycling along the Paragon Street cyclepath to carry straight ahead onto Barbican Road heading towards Walmgate Bar.
It is feasible they could leave the path at the crossing and cut left across the junction on a green cycle light phase, which should be kept clear with the introduction of the hatched box. The delay between a green cycle stage and a green traffic stage should be long enough to allow this. This manoeuvre could put cyclists in conflict with pedestrians crossing the pedestrian crossing, which it is assumed will be green at the same time.
If the cyclepath and footpath were swapped as suggested in the previous section, this would help remove this conflict, and reduce the amount of time needed in the delay for cyclists to cross the hatched area.
Slipway from Barbican Road
The slipway provided for use by cyclists turning left from Barbican Road onto the Paragon Street cyclepath shows a dropped kerb following running parallel to Barbican Road. Concerns are raised that the dropped kerb will not be installed fully flush between the two surfaces, but have a slight height difference which can upset a cycle’s wheel when approached at an acute angle. Examples of installations where this is a case are reported at Lilac Avenue and Scarcroft Road.
It is suggested that this kerb line is adjusted so that the kerb is brought in so it runs perpendicular to the slipway, and a cycle’s wheel will hit it head-on.
Barbican Road (southern arm)
The proposal shows new advisory lanes either side of Barbican Road on the Southern Arm. These are not annotated with a dimension, however, scaling from the drawing the Campaign understands that they are around 1.2m in width either side. LTN 1/20 paragraph 6.4.3 explains that lanes should be no less than 1.5m in order to be inclusive to all cyclists, and that substandard width lanes lead to close-passes as motorists tend to use the nearside marking to judge road positioning.
Paragraphs 6.4.14 to 6.4.17 of LTN 1/20 give recommendations on centre line removal, which would allow traffic lanes to safely be reduced in width enough to allow the minimum cycle lane widths to be provided on Barbican Road. It also references a trial which found a 3mph reduction in speeds when centre lines are removed, increasing road safety.
Access to Orbital Route
A number of members raised that they view Barbican Mews a convenient and attractive route to access the Orbital cycle route from Barbican Road. The existing traffic island lines up directly between the Paragon Street cycle path and the entrance into Barbican Mews providing for this, however this is lost with the proposed layout.
It is suggested that instead the crossing is realigned, or widened at the eastern end, so that this connection can still be made with ease without a series of sharp turns that would be difficult for longer, wider or towing cycles .
Barbican Road (eastern arm)
Regency Chinese Carpark
Members commented that it would be useful to introduce green surfacing across the entrance of the car park to Regency Chinese, in the same way as is proposed for Wellington Street, to highlight the cycle lane running towards the bypass. This would help prevent car’s pulling in/out on cycles carrying along the lane, and also help prevent cars edging out of the junction trying to join Barbican Road.
The same is suggested for the entrance to the Lawrence Court car park.
Connection to Walmgate Bar Junction
The connection from the junction towards Walmgate Bar is an important one, however there is no safe cycle infrastructure to allow for this; instead cyclists are left to try and filter through the traffic that is often waiting along the route.
It’s been suggested that a cycle path could be provided by widening the current footpath on the northern side of the road into the current grass verge, making space to provide a cyclepath between the footpath and carriageway.
It’s understood that the TSAR schemes can have limiting briefs and boundaries, however this can lead to piecemeal designs. The suggestion is that even if the cycle path couldn’t be delivered, the design is considered to future-proof its layout should such a route be able to be provided in the near future through other means.