WINCHESTER residents are cross about a crossing proposed for a city suburb.
The county council wants to install a crossing on Stoney Lane, Weeke, and remove three parking spaces.
But local people say the parking is important and that there is no need for a crossing on a road which is already traffic-calmed.
Stephanie Swann said she had spoken to local shops such as Waitrose and Co-op and none were aware of the traffic changes.
She said: “Lots of people are unhappy about this. This is about the only place in Winchester that people can park for nothing and is very useful for popping to the shops. Nobody knows anything about this, no one has had a letter.”
Ms Swann added: “Older people use the spaces and it all works perfectly fine. To alter something that does not appear to be an issue seems odd to me.”
“The road already has pinch points at which it is narrow which slows the traffic right down and allows people to cross easily.”
Gareth Hawkins, manager of Purrfectly Pets, said: “We are not overly keen. Parking is bad enough as it is so lose another three. We went through this five years ago and they aborted the plan. It’s going to be in such a dangerous place. We have not been notified - we saw it in the paper.”
Local city and county councillor Martin Tod said he was surprised the county had not informed local traders.
He said this was a replacement plan to one in 2011 which proposed a crossing further up Stoney Lane and would have resulted in the loss of six spaces.
Cllr Tod said he favoured the crossing: “we need to make the road safer. I know residents from Teg Down who shop at Waitrose also support it.”
The deadline for consultations is tomorrow (FRI) and Ms Swann of Bradley Road, Harestock, is organising a last-ditch petition against the plan. Her petition can be accessed at http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/against-loss-of-parking-spaces-in-stoney-lane.html.
The council plans to build the new crossing near the Stockbridge Road junction this summer. To provide the crossing, two spaces will go on the southern side and one on the north as previously reported.
The public can comment by May 23, by email at email@example.com, or post to: Strategic Transport, Economy, Transport and Environment Department, Hampshire County Council, SO23 8UD.
The Chronicle spoke to a number of local traders.
Sophie Abbey, owner of KS Hair Design, said: “I didn’t know about it. I think a crossing would be better because it’s always so busy down there, but parking is a massive issue.”
Jessica Warnes, receptionist of Winchester Podiatry, said: “I didn’t know there was going to be one. I think it’s great to have a crossing because I have seen a lot of people nearly get hit by cars, so I think it will be convenient, and there is a lot of parking at Waitrose anyway.”
Storm Drury, team leader at Co-op, said: “There’s a lot of issues with parking as it is, so it might cause a bit of a problem, but I don’t know how much of a difference it will make.”
Kuldip Singh, owner of Class 1 Dry Cleaners, said: “It’s good for the children and the people crossing because there needs to be one here.”
Simon Lambell, supervisor at Martin’s, said: “I didn’t know. It’s just ridiculous. The biggest problem round here is parking and to take that away. I can’t understand why the crossing can’t be further down by the existing bollards. I don’t see the thought process behind it or understand how whoever came up with the idea thought it would work. It’s going to be right near a roundabout which is going to cause problems.”
Emma Davies-Brown, supervisor at Costa Coffee, said: “I think there will be uproar from a lot of people, because on a weekend and when it’s busy, people use those spaces. When Aldi and Waitrose is full people use those spaces, so I don’t think it’s a good idea. I’m not sure if it will affect the businesses here.”
Chris Collins, manager at Carver Care, said: “I know nothing about this. I think it’s the wrong place to put a crossing because it’s right on a junction and makes a mess of the traffic. I think planners sometimes don’t look at things from a motorist’s point of view.”
Tara Smith, dispenser at Boots, said: “I think it will be safer for the amount of school children – they are all going to the park and there are people crossing there all the time. It’s a nightmare for parking around here anyway, but people do tend to use that little bit.”