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Fear that works may leave estate 'feeling like an island'
PEOPLE on an Oxford estate already hit by a one-way access system fear new roadworks will leave them stranded.
Works at the crossing on the eastern bypass at Kiln Lane, Risinghurst, are due to start later this month.
Throughout the Oxfordshire County Council works, drivers will not be able to turn right out of the estate on to the eastern bypass and pedestrians will not be able to use the crossing on the bypass.
Motorists will also not be able to turn right into the estate from the bypass.
It comes after the right-hand turn from the estate to the A40 was permanently closed last year, despite protests from estate residents.
Chairwoman of Risinghurst and Sandhills Parish Council, Barbara Naylor, said the estate would feel even more shut off and the works would cause major traffic problems.
She said: “It is going to be horrendous. It is going to be very difficult for everybody.
“You feel a bit like an island.
“It is going to make the traffic situation even worse than it is. It takes ages to get out of that junction at the best of times.”
And she added: “Risinghurst will be the main one hit. It is the people living here wanting to go out. It is going to be very inconvenient for three weeks.
“I am sure there will be some quite cross residents up here. It seems a bit drastic.”
The traffic order issued by the council says the works – due to start on Tuesday, May 27 – are for “new signal poles and toucan crossing aspects”.
But they will mean the only way out of the estate will be a left-hand turn onto the eastern bypass or a left-hand turn on to the A40.
Glynis Phillips, county council member for Barton, Sandhills and Risinghurst, said she first heard about the traffic order on Monday.
She said: “I was horrified. I got the traffic order and just could not believe the scale of disruption.
“I have sent an email straight off to officers for more information. How long has this been planned for and how have they got the funding when there is not the money for a crossing at the A40?”
And she said it seemed the estate was being cut off, adding: “You start off with four exits and entrances and you take one away and then you take another away. The reasons for doing it are not clear – or if they are no-one has explained them to me.”
Council spokesman Martin Crabtree said the work would improve cycle links between Headington and Thornhill park and ride. He said it would cost about £40,000.
He said: “The work will take a maximum of three weeks and traffic and pedestrian management is being carefully considered to minimise any disruption to all road users.
“Vehicles will still be permitted to turn left into the estate(s) but they will be advised to use Headington roundabout and Horspath Driftway signals as appropriate. Any local diversions will be clearly signed.”
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