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					                           Littleton Parish Council

                    A51 Highways Issues Oct. 2007

TRAFFIC VOLUME


The A51 is one of the busiest highways leading into and out of Chester City Centre. Figures
produced by Chester City Council (CCC) in their Annual Monitoring Report (AMR) for 2006
suggest the following:


    That Traffic Growth 1995 to 2005 on the A51 was likely to shrink by 9% from an Annual
      Average Daily Flow (AADF) of 35700 to 32600 by 2005
    That Traffic Growth over the same period for the A55 Southerly By-Pass was likely to
      grow by 36% from an AADF of 44300 to 60500 by 2005
    This apparent conflict is explained by the statement: “the low growth rate in Chester
      possibly reflects the through traffic picked up by the cordon (the A55 & A5480)”


This anomaly arises as a result of the fact that the figures for the A51 relate to traffic
monitoring undertaken at the Boughton end of the road and not at the Littleton end.


Consequently the oft quoted figure of 30,000+ vehicle movements per day does not reflect
the volume of traffic suffered by Littleton residents (which is likely to be much higher) but
rather the daily volume into the City Centre via Boughton, which has by then been dissipated
by the junction with the A55 Dual Carriageway.


Therefore, if the traffic growth figure for the A51 Littleton reflected the same percentage of
expected growth for the A55 Southerly By-Pass, the traffic volume over the period 1995 to
2005 will have increased the AADF (from an unknown figure likely to be significantly higher
than the 35700 vehicles estimated in Boughton) by around 36%.




JOHN LYON                                     1                                       OCT 2007
LITTLETON PARISH COUNCIL
I believe that this is the experience of most residents living on the A51 Littleton, in that traffic
volumes have increased significantly over the past 5 years alone and that, where once there
were quiet periods of the day, more recently traffic volumes are constant, even on Sundays.


Furthermore, Government figures issued by the Department of the Environment, Transport
and the Regions (DfT) suggest that traffic volumes for the period 2006 to 2016 are expected
to further grow by around 20% nationally. Such additional growth on the A51 is unsustainable
and we must therefore set in motion plans for the longer term resolution of this issue.


OTHER POINTS OF CONCERN


   1. SAFE CROSSING: There are no protected crossing points along the A51 Littleton
       road.   Crossing the road is extremely hazardous and exposed to the dangers of
       motorcycles, cars, trucks and HGVs travelling at speed. This is a particular danger for
       children catching school/college buses and the elderly residents of the numerous
       residential homes skirting the road. Furthermore, it does not encourage the use of
       Public Transport to and from Chester centre further increasing traffic volumes and
       flying in the face of stated environmental policies. Although thankfully there have been
       few accidents along this stretch, must we wait for a fatality before anything is done?


   2. HARE LANE/LITTLETON LANE JUNCTION: A junction with the A51 that is causing
       major concern – almost impossible to turn right out of Littleton Lane towards Chester
       and a similarly hazardous problem turning right out of Hare Lane with too many
       conflicting rights of way into the traffic flow.


   3. WHITE LINES: The white lane markings at the A51/A41/A55 intersection traffic lights
       and roundabout need to be repainted. There are many problems with lane jumping
       particularly at the point where traffic exits the City across the Vicars Cross/A41 traffic
       lights and splits into three lanes. One lane arrows left onto the A55 Dual Carriageway
       whilst the middle lane carries on towards Littleton – serious lane jumping takes place




JOHN LYON                                          2                                    OCT 2007
LITTLETON PARISH COUNCIL
       here. Repainting the white lines demarking the lanes would act as a psychological
       barrier to potential miscreants.


    4. TRAFFIC SPEED: Although the speed limit is 40mph many vehicles far exceed this
       speed particularly during lower volume periods and in the evening time. This further
       exacerbates the hazards of crossing the road.


PROPOSALS/POINTS FOR DISCUSSION.


     That a true survey of traffic volumes along the A51 Littleton section of the road be
       carried out, possibly through the use of automatic traffic counter rubber tube strips
       (although I understand these are not so effective at recording slow moving traffic in
       queues).
     That the case for Pelican type crossing points be investigated, or as a minimum that
       well-lit, protected crossing points be established at strategic points along the road.
     That the Parish Council undertakes a speed monitoring exercise to establish the case
       for speed cameras along the road.
     That the case for Traffic Lights and Pelican Crossings at the Hare Lane/Littleton lane
       junction be investigated, or as a minimum that traffic exiting Littleton Lane is obliged to
       turn left only, thereby avoiding the hazardous right turn onto the A51 towards
       Nantwich.
     That the white lane demarcation lines be repainted at the Vicars Cross traffic lights and
       the roundabout feeding access to the A55.
     That a consultation study is commissioned to outline possibilities/proposals for
       alleviating the traffic volumes on the A51 through Littleton in the longer term in view of
       the forecast in traffic growth to 2016.


FUNDING.


Recognising the budgetary constraints placed upon Highways resources is it possible to
:


JOHN LYON                                        3                                     OCT 2007
LITTLETON PARISH COUNCIL
  1. Secure funding for the minor works now?
  2. Prepare a case for funding larger projects in future budgets?
  3. Secure funding from the EU or Lottery on the basis of: environmental enhancement;
     public transport provision; help for the elderly; or children’s school transport provision?


ISSUES FOR PARISH COUNCIL DISCUSSION.


   Bill-Board Advertising by A Turfing Company using a mobile trailer parked at the old
     Tarvin Road Nursery – is this legal? How do we get it removed and prevent others
     doing the same?


   The Old Tarvin Road Nursery is also an eyesore and attracting Gypsies and
     Undesirables along one of the major gateways to the City – can this be compulsory
     purchased and converted into a Park and Ride facility which would also help alleviate
     the traffic flow problems mentioned earlier?      The current Park and Ride facility at
     Sainsbury’s roundabout on the A41 is not easily accessible to visitors entering the City
     perimeter via the A51. Could negotiations be opened with the owners of the Nursery to
     this end? Can private enterprise be involved in developing a Park and Ride if funding
     is a problem?




JOHN LYON                                     4                                      OCT 2007
LITTLETON PARISH COUNCIL

				
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