Harrogate & Knaresborough Service Centre Transportation Strategy

by billhoult on 14 May, 2011

A Transportation Strategy has been produced by the North Yorkshire County Council that has various proposals on which comments have been requested by the 16 May 2011. The most controversial is the proposal relating to traffic circulation in the centre of Harrogate, however there are schemes in Knaresborough.

The proposals may be seen on www.northyorks.gov.uk/harrogatetransport.

My comments

I am aware that this is at an early stage and it will be an iterative process.  However I appreciate being able to make preliminary observations on the proposals.

Transport Management Initiatives
A Station Parade
Representing Knaresborough these changes are obviously more pertinent to the Harrogate County Councillors although inevitably members of the Knaresborough division do visit Harrogate and use the local road network. It is clear that the changes are unlikely to have repercussions beyond the immediate locality so I will leave it to local members to comment.
However as an aside I note that the proposal contains no provisional or estimated traffic numbers nor the likely loss (or increase) in car parking provision that may result which is a deficiency.

B Harrogate Park and Ride Feasibility Project
You will be aware that a similar study was conducted some years ago but subsequently abandoned. It is my view that it may well be worth carrying out an update on all the work that was carried out then.

Rail Halt East of Knaresborough
A proposal to provide a rail halt in the vicinity of the Manse Farm site was used by the Harrogate District Council  a couple of years ago to “justify” a huge housing development to the east of the current Eastfield development as part of the LDF strategy. The proposals were subsequently thrown out by the Government Inspector as unacceptable. Investigations with Railtrack (as it was then), the prospective housing developers, the local authorities (York City, Harrogate District and North Yorkshire County Council) showed that neither short nor medium term funding for the proposal was remotely possible.

My concern is that without the prospect of funding being available any study apart from being a waste of time and money may just become a “Trojan horse” for further proposals for excessive housing development in this area. A Town that already has an air quality issues on one its main road network routes.

Without the identification of standalone funding I am opposed to this proposal.

Other Initiatives
Knaresborough Bond End-Air Quality Management Area
This is a welcome an urgent priority for those living in the area and should be dealt with as such. I understand that consultations are already underway.

King Georges Field Cycle Route
The resumption of this initiative is to be welcomed however there are challenges that I have flagged up earlier. Stockwell Avenue is a one way system and a very narrow Road. In addition because many of the residents are unable to access off-street parking, cars are parked on the road making it even narrower. Allowing contra flow for cyclists is likely to create a hazard unless this issue is addressed.

York Road Knaresborough Proposed Pedestrian crossing
I welcome the proposal

Cllr Bill Hoult

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