Major roadworks will bring delays across Chorley town centre.
It comes after highways chiefs approved plans that will see a roundabout replacing traffic lights on the busy stretch of road outside the town hall at the junction of Union Street, Market Street and Park Road.
For years, campaigners have been calling for the ‘unnecessary’ lights which have caused ‘bottlenecks’ at rush hour to be removed.
Now, LCC bosses say that the scheme will help make traffic flow more freely in the area.
Work is set to start on the scheme from March 18 and will last for six weeks but LCC say they are going to keep disruption to local businesses to a minimum.
Rachel Crompton, highways manager, said: “These lights were first put in place when Market Street was part of the main road through Chorley and, now that traffic levels are lighter in this area of town, a mini-roundabout is a better way to allow traffic to flow.
“There will be some delays while we carry out the work, and we’re grateful for people’s patience, but in the long term people’s journeys will be quicker as a result.”
The project will also include two new zebra crossings on Union Street and Park Road.
The work is expected to cause some disruption and, to minimise the overall impact, Lancashire County Council will take the opportunity to resurface the nearby junction of Market Street and St Thomas’s Road at the same time.
It is all part of the Local Transport Plan which could improve infrastructure in Lancashire for the next decade.
The changes to this junction are one part of improvements to the route for buses between Preston and Chorley which will help to make public transport a more attractive option.
Coun Peter Malpas, who represents Chorley West on Lancashire County Council, said: “The traffic lights at union Street cause huge bottlenecks and are totally unnecessary.
“They also contribute to major problems along Queens road, St Thomas’s Road and past Parklands High School in Southport Road.
“There used to be two sets of traffic lights outside the town hall.
“When they failed for three days several years ago, traffic moved seemlessly and without an accident or danger.
“Now there’s just one set of traffic lights left, and I am delighted that it has been approved.”
Malcolm Allen, chairman of the Chorley Traders’ Alliance, believes that it is good news for the town centre.
He said: “This is something that has been mooted some years ago.
“It is meant to improve the traffic flow at the junction.
“I think it will make the town centre a much more attractive proposition now and people will want to come in now.
“It is just a pity that Coun Tim Ashton did not approve the plans to re-open Market Street at the same time so both projects could have been done together.”
The resurfacing of Market Street and St Thomas’s Road will be carried out over the weekend of 20/21 April.
The work will be done overnight on Saturday and during the day on Sunday to minimise disruption, with diversions in place.
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Weather for Chorley
Wednesday 22 May 2013
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