Streets Belong To The People, Roads Belong To Everyone – Benton Street

Benton Street 1108301610Over the past two days I have delivered letters to every household in Benton Street as follows:
“For a number of years we have experienced increased traffic on Benton Street using the street as a throughway to and from the A12. The incidence of overweight vehicles seems to have abated with the installation of improved signage at Copdock and at the East Bergholt/Hadleigh turn off, but we are still experiencing goods vehicles and private cars using us as a convenient short cut for the surrounding villages. Worse, drivers seem to think that they can drive on the pavements without regard to the residents.
A number of ideas have been circulating for some time. These include a bypass via Hook Lane, railings and a pinch point chicane/ priority traffic system.
Suffolk’s Economy Skills & Environment Department have suggested that we try a pilot programme of installing a priority traffic system between 50 and 60 Benton Street. The priority system would consist of pavement build-outs on each side of the road (see plan below). This will ensure that drivers are aware that it is not possible to pass each other in this narrow section of Benton Street and formalise the requirement to give way to oncoming traffic. Additional parking restrictions would need to be introduced to allow queuing in advance of the build-outs and approximately 7 parking spaces (including 1 advisory disabled bay, which is currently not being used) would be lost. However there would be facility to offset this loss by revoking some of the parking restrictions further along Benton Street.
If these proposals are pursued, SCC will introduce an experimental priority system, using temporary water filled barriers, for 6-12 months to confirm the effectiveness of the proposed treatment.
If you feel that Benton Street should remain the same, please tell me. Similarly if you want change, then please let me know which of the choices is most acceptable and if you have other ideas please share them with me.
A larger version of the plan will be on display upstairs in the Library at 10 a.m. on Saturday 13th September when this informal consultation will end. “
So far the feed back (on the street) has been positive.
However I would like written feedback so that we can go ahead with firmly based actions.

Benton Street Chicane Proposal 140805