Vogue gyratory revamp to go ahead

From The Argus:

Vogue Gyratory Improvements

Councillors are set to approve plans to improve the safety of one of the city’s most notorious junctions.

The Vogue gyratory in Lewes Road, has been a cause of anxiety for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians for years because of its complicated layout and traffic signals.

Now, following years of consultation, work could begin on a £750,000 redevelopment of the road within months if councillors give the final go-ahead next week.

Among the improvements that will be put to Brighton and Hove City Council’s environment, transport and sustainability committee will be the introduction of a simplified road layout and a new continuous northbound cycle lane through the current gyratory system.

The proposed plans also include a new northbound bus lane and a new “floating bus stop” at Sainsbury’s with a larger bus shelter for passengers and a bike lane.

Similar schemes have already been introduced in the new Lewes Road bus lanes.

Research carried out by the council during the consultation found that most people travelling along Lewes Road do not use a car with 34,000 people a day either walking, cycling or using the bus compared with 26,000 motorists.

Because of the layout of the current system, the junction is notorious for serious traffic jams during peak times.

The council is hoping the improvements will further reduce the number of cars going through the junction by improving safety and making bus times faster and more reliable.

It is also hoped pedestrian and cycle safety will be improved with changes to kerb alignments at the entrance and exits to the gyratory to give cyclists and vehicles more space to manoeuvre while giving pedestrians priority over traffic coming from the Sainsbury’s car park.

The plans also include improvements to the pedestrian crossing by simplifying the layout.

An original consultation in May 2012 found that 65% of residents supported improving the junction while the latest consultation produced just three objections from residents and businesses.

Ian Davey, the council’s lead member for transport, said: “There’s solid support for these measures and very little opposition.

“This junction is seen as unpleasant for pedestrians and off-putting for cyclists. It also delays buses, a particular problem, given that more journeys are made by bus along Lewes Road than are made by car.

“The measures will encourage use of public transport improving air quality, travel options and health.”

He added that similar changes made at Seven Dials have shown that improving road designs can have benefits.

If the plans are approved next week then work could begin as early as July.