A busy junction between Felpham Way, Felpham Road and Downview Road has been made safer for cyclists this week, following the installation of cutting edge tech- the first of its kind anywhere in the UK.
The work cost approximately £55,00 and includes the following upgrades:
- New traffic signal equipment for the detection of cyclists
-Low level traffic signals for improved visibility for cyclists
-Signal timings designed to give cyclists a headstart to proceed before other traffic and live streaming cameras for improved remote monitoring.
-The southern arm of the junction has been reduced from a two-lane approach to single lane to accommodate the lead-in cycle lane.
-Green road-surface boxes for cyclists only to stop at so they are ahead of other queuing traffic on all four of the crossroad’s approaches. Motorists, including motorcyclists, must stop at the first white stop line reached if the traffic lights are at amber or red. The green cycle boxes and secondary stop line closest to the junction are for cyclist only.
The new sensors allow highway officers to monitor the first six months of usage of the new upgrades, and the data reflects an 'encouraging' uptake by cyclists in the pre-start facilities.
Some motor vehicles, however, have been spotted stopping in the cycle only boxes.
A spokesperson for West Sussex Highways said: “These improvements have been provided for the sake of all road users and for cyclists’ safety in particular, so we would appeal to motorists to please respect the new layout and timings.
“The specialist detectors have specific zones set for cyclists within the green boxes and sensors for all other traffic.
“Remembering to stop in the appropriate position is not only encouraged for safety and the efficient operation of the traffic controls, but the new positions are also enforceable by law."
Rob Piatt, a 'Bikeability' instructor for the County Council, got a chance to experience the upgrades for himself, and came away impressed by the changes.
"I’m an experienced, confident cyclist. However, I’m keen to see inexperienced cyclists able to ride the same way as me. These green boxes and new lights go some way to helping that," he said.
"“If motorists are presented with very clear parameters and the spaces are designed so cyclists can pull away from the junction quickly and can feel safe in doing so, then there is less chance for conflict or confusion.”