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A cautious welcome for safer route around Seven Dials roundabout
A major scheme to make an accident- blackspot roundabout safer has been given a cautious welcome.
The new £800,000 Seven Dials road layout was completed just before Christmas, after nine months of work.
It was welcomed for improving the area’s appearance – though some questioned if it would improve safety.
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Millie Ferguson, resident of Addison Grove, said: “It looks very smart. Driving is slower, though.
“We were concerned about the railings being removed but we don’t know yet if the long-term safety will be any better or worse.”
EmmaCarey, manger at Small Batch Coffee, Dyke Road, said: “It’s a longtime coming. Our business was definitely affected by the long duration of the roadworks.
“It seems to be running smoothly though there are still a lot of cars honking at each other.”
Steve Percy, of the People’s Parking Protest, said: “I’ve got some reservations.
A coach was unable to get round the other day without mounting the central island. It begs the question how did they fail to take this into account?
“As I forecast people are walking straight across the middle rather than using the zebra crossings, which can’t be good for safety.”
The changes are meant to enhance the Dials’ village atmosphere with new trees and benches, while benefiting road users particularly cyclists and pedestrians.
An oval traffic island has replaced the mini-roundabout meaning vehicles merge gradually rather than converging on a single point. Street clutter was removed and pelican crossings changed to zebra crossings to make it quicker and easier to cross.
The junction was one of the most ‘accident-prone’ in the city, with 20 collisions between 2009-2012.
Lead councillor for transport Ian Davey said: “This is a set of improvements well worth celebrating because they will certainly, over time, reduce the number of accidents and injuries at this location.
“We are confident the changes will also contribute to the long-term economic regeneration of the area and offer a welcome boost to local business.”
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