August 12, 2017
Nottingham taxi drivers have expressed their concerns over the temporary road signs put in place as part of the new Broadmarsh development. While the council believes that the development will be of great benefit to the city in the long-term, local cabbies are worried that the short-term changes to the existing road system could have serious implications.
A Problem with Road Management
According to a council spokesperson the changes are being made to “…improve traffic and pedestrian movements in preparation for the next stages of the Broadmarsh regeneration programme.” The programme itself is set to see London Road gain an extra lane, increase the size of a pedestrian island and to add a feeder lane to the taxi rank on the intersection of Queensbridge Road and Sheriffs Way. However, despite the fact that these proposals will, in the future, offer benefits to both taxi firms and motorists, taxi drivers are highlighting a problem with the way the road system is being managed in the meantime.
The problem appears to be with the give way signs that have replaced the traffic lights at the junction between Canal Street and Middle Hill. As a result, any traffic travelling west on Canal Street must now give way to traffic on Middle Hill, before it can move on. Although there are signs preceding the junction, local taxi drivers are concerned about the potential for accidents.
“It’s ridiculous and such a bad idea to remove the traffic lights. The area was choc-a-block this morning…”
One local cabbie, Amrik Padam, says that people in the area are used to stopping at the traffic lights but now anyone can make the mistake and drive through. “It’s an accident waiting to happen because the traffic lights have been there for a long time.” Similarly, Matlood Hussain, who has been working as a taxi driver for almost 50 years, said that the current arrangements “will cause an accident – definitely. The traffic in this area is fast and heavy – they should have left the traffic lights there.” Another local cabbie, Mohammed Mahirbam, said: “It’s ridiculous and such a bad idea to remove the traffic lights. The area was choc-a-block this morning because you’ve got the buses coming along there now as well. It’s madness.”
A Warning to Drivers
“Over the next three years the Broadmarsh area is changing for the better.”
Nottingham City Council argues that the plans have been operative for almost three months. A council spokesperson commented: “In April, the City Council announced changes to a series of junctions around Broadmarsh including at Canal Street. Drivers are strongly urged to pay attention to this new layout. Over the next three years the Broadmarsh area is changing for the better which will involve works in the area and may affect day to day journeys.”
Despite the Council’s words, some locals seem to agree with the taxi drivers’ concerns. Dan Bell, a local mechanic, described the current changes as “an accident waiting to happen” before going on to say that “there’s a small sign but people have been driving through it for years so I think it needs to be much bigger. There will be an accident before too long.”