Proposed Experimental No Right Turn from Manvers Street to Dorchester Street

As so often with BaNES consultations it is very difficult to evaluate this proposal on the basis of the information provided. No evidence is given of current, or projected, problems in Dorchester Street or the extent to which these are, or may be, caused by vehicles other then buses and taxis. There is no evidence on the extent to which problems would be resolved by a right turn ban out of Manvers Street, none of the category of trips likely to be affected by the ban, none on alternative routes likely to be used by diverted drivers, none on the effect on their journey times and none on increased traffic levels on other routes.

Some city centre residents face the prospect of seeing their option of several exits from the city centre with traffic divided more or less evenly between them all effectively reduced to one exit – and this on a route which is heavily congested at times already. Added to this the extra traffic generated by the proposed Dorchester Street experiment (including eventually all the cars leaving the Manvers Street Car Park) and by the closure of Pulteney Bridge to traffic and they are likely to be face a serious and routine delays. The traffic lights allowing vehicles on to Pulteney Road only allow 2/3 cars through at a time (although going the other way quite a few cars can turn the corner into the city when the filter light is on), but there are many other problems on this route – open top bus crawling along, coaches/buses dropping/picking up at the sports centre and bus stops, lorries delivering to the clubs/hotels and traffic feeding in from the Sports Centre car park, the Cricket Club car park and the Court car part – often forcing their way out several at a time and not feeding in turn and many even wishing to execute a U turn back into town.

Drivers leaving the south eastern quadrant of the city centre, where TARA has many members, for the south and west will be considerably disadvantaged by the need to divert via North Parade and Widcombe. What gain it is anticipated this proposal will create is unclear from the information BaNES has provided. However, it seems to us unlikely that these will outweigh the inconvenience to residents and businesses in the city centre.

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