Campaigner’s road plea

Millers Lane Platt Bridge, the road into the Millers Lane estate, resident John Shale at the junction of Victoria Street and Millers Lane
Millers Lane Platt Bridge, the road into the Millers Lane estate, resident John Shale at the junction of Victoria Street and Millers Lane

A CONGESTION-buster road scheme has been blasted by residents.

Wigan Council’s highways department has published an order to stop cars entering a large housing estate in Platt Bridge by turning right via the traditional Platt Street and Millers Lane points off the main Warrington Road.

But motorist and community activist John Shale – who lives in nearby Victoria Road – claims the plan will cause more problems than it solves when it is eventually put into place.

Although there will still be access to the retail units, residents on the wider housing estate will have to gain access from the new Sherwood Crescent road that has recently been built linking Millers Lane to the Roundabout on the A573.

But Mr Shale said: “It might seem that Sherwood Crescent offers an adequate alternative route. That simply shifts the rat run over to a section of road which is congested with parked cars because of inadequate off-road parking for new build homes.”

Mr Shale says he currently has the choice of driving through the housing estates or trying to exit via the roundabout at the end of Sherwood Crescent, which, at peak times, sees a stream of traffic heading to Wigan.

Ward Coun Eunice Smethurst said that the proposal was part of the council’s Strategic Transport Route Assessments programme which aimed to reduce journey times on the strategic route network.

As part of the monitoring process, a number of right turning vehicles have been seen causing delays at the junction of Warrington Road and Millers Lane.

She said: “Council officers have told us that this proposal will result in improved journey times on the strategic route network which includes the A573 through Platt Bridge and therefore reduce the likelihood of rat running through the Credition Drive Estate. However, we do still have some reservations that this scheme will deliver this.

“We share concerns about the parking situation on Sherwood Way and have been lobbying the council to take action to resolve this following complaints from residents.“

She added that the Abram ward Labour councillors share Mr Shale’s concerns about ‘rat running’ and have secured an agreement from the traffic engineer to undertake a further traffic survey to assess the extent of the problem.

Council Traffic Manager Kevin Hargreaves said: “The purpose of this scheme is to remove the vehicles that currently turn right from Warrington Road into Millers Lane which cause congestion on the A573 Warrington Road.

“Mr Shale’s concerns that it is quite difficult to get out of the fourth arm of the roundabout, Sherwood Crescent, have been considered. With Millers Lane closed off those wishing to gain access into the estate will shift to the roundabout therefore creating gaps where there are none at present. This will allow for the roundabout to operate more efficiently and reduce delays on all approaches.”