Fresh calls for bypass to help solve chronic congestion problems

Traffic Action Group for Lowton and Golborne are leading the demands amid criticism of council road widening plans

Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 9:40 am

Traffic plagued residents have stepped up calls for a bypass.

Demands have been made by Traffic Action Group for Lowton and Golborne amid fears that Wigan Council schemes to improve roads in the area would further add to the problems.

Christine Lewis, who co-founded the group, said a planned widening of Stone Cross Lane and installation of additional right turn onto East Lancashire Road in Lowton, would lead to more motorists.

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Campaigners holding a placard calling for the bypass to be extended

She said a bypass is urgently needed to cope with the extra traffic and would like to see the Atherleigh Way extended to get to junction 22 of the M6 at Warrington, 35 years after work on the road started.

Council chiefs have ruled out such a move saying that a new road cannot be funded at this time.

The row has broken out after a consultation ended recently to get residents views on Wigan Council schemes to mitigate the impact caused by new developments.

Communities were asked how they want the £15m from housebuilders (£8.6 in Golborne & Lowton and £6.5 in Standish) to be spent.

But Ms Lewis, who said 1,500 homes have already been built in the area, hit out at the plans and the consultation scheme.

Ms Lewis, who lives on Stone Cross Lane North in Lowton, said: “If the council had listened from the beginning, the questionnaires as part of the survey could have been better.”

Colin and Patricia Disley, who live on the service road on the west bound side of the A580 near the junction with the A572, said they had serious concerns about the council's plans to widen the A580.

They said: "If this was a new build, houses would not be placed this close to a dual carriageway with a speed limit this high. With the current speed limit, the effects of traffic being closer to the houses would be completely unacceptable.

"If these plans were put into action, this will bring the traffic closer to our front door, causing more vibration than is already felt through the building and bringing noise, dust and pollution with it."

Lee Webb, who lives in Martland Avenue, Lowton, said the road widening proposals would have a "detrimental impact" on his family.

He said: "This proposal has already had a detrimental impact on our mental and physical wellbeing. This is only going to get worse, and I sincerely hope that this option has been reconsidered and is no longer deemed appropriate."

Mark Tilley, assistant director for infrastructure at Wigan Council said: “It is disappointing that some residents feel the consultation did not meet their expectations.

“Fundamentally, our consultation event and survey aimed to stimulate them to offer up their own thoughts and ideas and to also pass open comment on some proposals we had identified and developed with the key stakeholder groups and ward members.

“Within the survey form, both digital and paper, they have the opportunity to express their thoughts and ambitions for their neighbourhood.

“Clearly, there are some constraints: available funds, which we have been transparent about, and also the appropriate criteria to use the developer contributions.

“We have also made it clear what is affordable and in both Standish and Lowton and Golborne bypass extensions are outside our available budgets and timescales.”