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£1.3m road scheme ‘isn’t safe enough’
A COUNCILLOR has called for a review of a new £1.3m road scheme in Bicester due to safety concerns.
Les Sibley says the area around four zebra crossings — two in Queens Avenue, one in St John’s Street and one in Banbury Road — is too dark, and says the Bucknell Road junction is hazardous.
He warns that the area is badly lit and an “accident waiting to happen”.
His call comes after changes to the road system took place last March to tackle congestion.
Traffic lights at the junction of Field Street and St John’s Street were replaced with a new mini-roundabout and a new zebra crossing installed.
St John’s Street became two-way, and traffic was able to turn right out of Bucknell Road, but was stopped from turning right into Bucknell Road from Field Street.
Oxfordshire County Council plans to review the work in June but Mr Sibley wants the review now while the nights are still dark to highlight his safety concerns.
He says footpaths near the crossings are not light enough, and if pedestrians wear dark clothes at night they won’t be seen until they are on the crossing.
The independent councillor said: “There are four crossings and they are all dimly lit. They need to be better illuminated.
“The crossing (near the police station) is used quite a lot by youngsters going to school.
“Because it’s a zebra crossing people can just step out and they rely on drivers seeing them.
“It’s an accident waiting to happen because it’s a busy road.”
He has also criticised changes at the Bucknell Road junction and says it made driving “stressful”.
He wants the right-hand turn from Bucknell Road into Field Street to be scrapped.
Currently motorists can turn right into Field Street, where yards away there is a zebra crossing and then a roundabout.
Mr Sibley said: “It’s tricky to negotiate both as a motorist and pedestrian, and safety should be of paramount importance.
“Too many things happen at the roundabout. It’s not that well lit.”
He urged pedestrians to wear lighter clothing.
County council spokesman Owen Morton said: “The county council will monitor safety closely and a review of the turning restrictions at Bucknell Road and Field Street will take place in June.”