Greens call for rethink over proposals to close busy Norwich junction

An artist's impression of how Park Lane could look if the Push The Pedalways changes are brought in.

An artist's impression of how Park Lane could look if the Push The Pedalways changes are brought in. - Credit: Norwich City Council

Calls have been made for the council to rethink plans to block off a busy road junction in the light of public opposition.

As part of the £5.7m Push the Pedalways project, Norwich City Council officers have put forward proposals to block off Park Lane at its junction with Avenue Road. That would prevent traffic, other than cycles, from heading down the road.

Officers say the plans will make getting around the city safer for cyclists, but last week worried residents warned that it would send drivers rat-running onto nearby roads.

A petition against the plans has been signed by 315 residents, and posters opposing Park Lane's closure have been put up in the neighbourhood. And now Green councillors are calling on the council to rethink the proposals. They claim that while a majority of residents back cycling improvements, most oppose closure of Park Lane.

The Greens are particularly concerned about the loss of direct access to Unthank Road from Park Lane and Avenue Road, rat-running and a potential 20pc increase in traffic on some roads. Denise Carlo, one of the Nelson Green Party ward councillors, said she has received 150 emails from residents opposing closure, although posters have also appeared supporting the plans.

She said: 'Norwich Green Party supports the Pink Pedalways project as a whole, but we have concerns about plans for the Avenue Road to Park Lane section.

'When the funding for the project was announced, we wanted to work with Nelson residents, who know their area best, to come up with solutions to improve cycling. We recommended taking an area-wide approach given the nature of the terraced area with its narrow streets and the presence of five schools.

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'The city council has devised its own scheme, and the latest consultation shows that a majority of residents do not support it. We now call on the council to rethink and allow greater resident engagement which will lead to a solution that more residents can support.'

A public consultation on the Park Lane to Vauxhall Street section of the Pink Pedalways route ended on Friday, and a spokesman for Norwich City Council said it would take people's views into account.

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