Mayor of Basingstoke advises cyclists and pedestrians to use alternative routes after road designers submit plans which fail to accommodate their needs
A £10m design to rebuild Black Dam roundabout in Basingstoke will see provisions for cyclists ignored – with the intersection set to change from ‘difficult’ to ‘dangerous’ for bike users.
The plans for the Basingstoke roundabout which links the M3, A30 and A339 go against Department for Transport guidelines that state that road designers need to accommodate the needs for cyclists and pedestrians.
Maria Millar, MP for Basingstoke, told Parliament in August that: “because the pre-existing road layout made cycling difficult, few cyclists regularly choose to use that junction.”
She also told the House that the plan goes against the national plan to get more people into cycling and reduce traffic congestion.
“We need to design cycling into our everyday lives. Like many successful towns, Basingstoke faces the big problem of road congestion,” she said.
“More than £30 million has been spent on improving the roundabouts for which Basingstoke is so famous. That money is there not to allow cars to move around more easily, but to reduce traffic congestion.
“Encouraging more people to cycle and indeed to walk is part of achieving that strategy.”
Mayor Cllr Roger Gardiner backed the designs, according to Peddlar, saying that he supported all measures to improve safety in the borough, but advised cyclists to take other routes.
“While I would like to think [that] the Highway Authority and Hampshire County Council would not be so irresponsible as to introduce an unsafe highway, this is a busy junction and its suitability for cyclists and pedestrians is questionable,” he said.
He added: “I [am] sure you would agree that it would be preferable for cyclists to avoid this very heavily trafficked intersection.”