Consultation - Bristol Road South Junction Improvements

Be Heard logo

Birmingham City Council is considering highway improvements to address road safety concerns on Bristol Road South, Bell Hill and Shenley Lane.   They would like to hear your views on these preliminary proposals. Please provide your views by emailing or via the Be Heard website. Responses should be received no later than 13th February 2015.   Push Bikes' own response is below, which you may like to use for your own response.

The improvements are expected to be implemented summer 2015 subject to approvals being secured.

They are seeking to implement improvements as detailed below and on drawing no’s: CA-02654-S1-010-011.

  1. Bell Hill / Whitehill Lane, Bell Hill / Nigel Avenue and Shenley Lane / Meadow Brook Road Junctions

  • Prohibition of right turn from Whitehill Lane to Shenley Lane.
  • Prohibition of the right turn from Bell Hill to Nigel Avenue.
  • Reduction of the speed limit from 40mph to 30mph on Bell Hill and Shenley Lane from Sir Herbert Austin Way to approximately 190m north of Meadow Brook Road.
  • New 30mph speed limit roundels.
  • Installation of advance warning ‘Junction on bend Ahead’ signs.

  1. Bristol Road South / St Laurence Road Junction

  • Reduce the speed limit from 40mph to 30mph on this section of Bristol Road South.  
  • New 30mph speed limit roundels.
  • Relocate existing bus shelter approximately 40m away from the junction to improve visibility.
  • Relocate BT telephone kiosk and Royal Mail post box away from the junction to improve visibility.

  1. Bristol Road South / Whitehill Lane Junction

  • Closing of the central reserve gap on Bristol Road South / Whitehill Lane Junction

Push Bikes' Response

Push Bikes is concerned that Whitehill Lane is a rat-run which allows motorists to bypass the junction of the A38 and Bell Hill. As a general rule Push Bikes welcomes the closure of rat-runs, as they create fast, heavy traffic on minor roads, making conditions unpleasant both for residents, and for pedestrians and cyclists seeking quiet routes on which to make a journey.

We are pleased that the rat-run is being closed in the A38->Shenley Lane direction, however we are concerned that it is not being closed in the reverse direction, so we would urge you to do this.

We would like to see 2 metre wide cycleways provided in the central reservation where closures to motor traffic are being made (with their geometry designed to make their use by cars impossible; if necessary reduce their width slightly). This is important for retaining permeability for cycles while restricting motor traffic. While further cycle infrastructure is beyond the remit of these current plans, implementing filtered permeability (keeping routes open to cycles and pedestrians when they are closed to cars) when closures are made is vital to provide features that can be joined up to proper cycle infrastructure later on.

In the case of Whitehill Lane this would require the closure of the unnecessary filter lane for people turning right into Whitehill Lane from Shenley Lane which must surely be used almost exclusively for journeys ending at one of the relatively small number of houses in Whitehill Lane.

Regarding the changes associated with St Laurence Road, Push Bikes welcomes the reduction in speed limit, though we should also say that in many other countries the A38 would have segregated cycle lanes, and that is what we would like to see here. However, we recognise that this is beyond the scope of these specific plans.