Danger at road crossing
PEDESTRIANS are dicing with death on a daily basis trying to cross Royston Road in Baldock. At present residents of Clothall Common must either cross at the traffic lights at the junction with Station Road and Clothall Road, where there is no pedestrian p
PEDESTRIANS are dicing with death on a daily basis trying to cross Royston Road in Baldock.
At present residents of Clothall Common must either cross at the traffic lights at the junction with Station Road and Clothall Road, where there is no pedestrian phase, or risk crossing nearer the estate where fast-moving traffic poses a danger.
Plans to make the junction more pedestrian-friendly have been put back until 2009 when the town's enhancement scheme is set to start but this decision has dismayed Baldock East Councillor Marilyn Kirkland.
She said: "It's difficult to cross safely and quickly. People cross to go to the train station, mothers take their kids to the school and it is also used by many to get into town.
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"I have been in touch with Hertfordshire Highways to see if something can be done. It's a shame we can't get some sort of compromise until the improvements are made."
A spokesman for Hertfordshire Highways said: "We are aware of concerns about this junction - which has been investigated by Herts Highways - and agree that a pedestrian phase is needed within the traffic lights.
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"However, we are intending to address this issue at the same time as we take forward the Baldock town centre enhancement scheme, which is expected to be realised in about two years' time, pending consultation.
"Any changes to the junction would have an impact on traffic in the town centre and vice versa, which is why it is not appropriate to deal with the junction in isolation.
"It would not be good use of taxpayers' money to do a scheme on the junction and then have to redo it or change it in the next couple of years."
Further along Royston Road, towards Clothall Common, people have resorted to running across the road to avoid being hit by reckless drivers.
Concerned resident Laura Ostick, 25, said she often has to run across the road because the traffic doesn't slow down.
Miss Ostick, of Orwell View, said: "I live in Clothall Common and have to get the train each day to work. Twice a day I have to walk across the road, although it's actually more like running.
"The sight on the bend of the road is restricted and cars don't tend to slow down. It goes from 30mph to 40mph in that spot. It can be quite dangerous.