How would you solve the bottlenecks?

Many have criticised Blackpool Promenade's shared space for causing congestion.
Many have criticised Blackpool Promenade's shared space for causing congestion.
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Five possible options for the future of Blackpool Promenade are exclusively revealed by The Gazette today after town hall chiefs agreed to a full-scale review of the layout which has been blamed for causing congestion.

The controversial ‘shared space’ design between New Bonny Street and North Pier could be ditched in favour of a return to the original four-lane carriageway.

Option 1

Option 1

Other alternatives could be to retain two lanes but resurface the carriageway, install a new raised kerb and adopt different types of crossing points.

The cost of any work, which is up to £2.7m, will be met from existing council funds.

Residents are now being consulted on the options before councillors make a decision this summer.

The Gazette’s story had suggested that Option 4 would mean a full 35 week closure.

Option 2

Option 2

To clarify, the option will mean work will last for 35 weeks which includes a full five week closures with a number of partial closures throughout the work.

Options 2, 3A and 3B would also see only some full closures throughout the length of the work.

Full details of the options are as follows:

OPTION 1 – No changes.

Option 3a

Option 3a

Repairs carried out as and when required to block work carriageway surface.

The zebra crossing which was removed earlier this year would not be reinstalled.

Cost: none

Length of closure: none.

Option 3b

Option 3b

OPTION 2 – The block work carriageway and lay-bys would be replaced with asphalt. 
Three crossings would be required to allow people to cross safely. 
A raised kerbline would also be introduced at the edge of the footway.

Cost: £1m - £1.2m

Length of closure: Starting November 11 for 15 weeks including a two week closure for Christmas. Two-way traffic flow would be maintained until the final four weeks from January 27 and February 21 2014 when there would be full closure.

OPTION 3a – The layout would remain a single lane in each direction with pedestrian refuges installed at up to six key points to help people cross the road.
It also has right turn facilities and lay-bys.

Asphalt would also replace the current blockwork and a raised kerbline would be introduced at the edge of the footway.

Cost: £800,000 to £925,000

Option 4

Option 4

Closure: The work would start on November 11 for 15 weeks including a two week closure for Christmas.

Two way traffic would be maintained until the final four weeks from January 27 and February 21 2014 when there would be full closure.

OPTION 3b – As option 3a but with an extended central reservation rather than smaller pedestrian refuges.

Cost: £900,000 to £1.05m

Closure: The work would start on November 11 for 15 weeks including a two week closure for Christmas.

Two way traffic would be maintained until the final four weeks from January 27 and February 21 2014 when there would be full closure.

OPTION 4 – Change the layout to provide two lanes in each direction, widening the carriageway.
Replace block work with asphalt and install crossings at all junctions.
Guard rails would need to be reintroduced for pedestrian safety reasons.

Cost: £2.3m - £2.7m

Closure: Starting 11 November for 35 weeks including two week breaks for Christmas and Easter. Two-way traffic could be maintained until the final five week period between June 4 and July 8 when a full closure would be required.

But no work would begin until the end of the Illuminations at the earliest.

There has been widespread discontent following the opening of the ‘shared space’ Promenade in June 2011 as part of the £14m new Tower Festival Headland.

Traffic has regularly backed up while fears have been raised about pedestrian safety.

Areas of the new block work carriageway have also had to be repaired after cracking under the weight of traffic.

However figures show fewer people have been injured in traffic accidents on the Prom since the new design was unveiled.

Figures show between 2008 and 2010, there were 35 people injured in accidents on the Central Promenade, compared to four in 2012 which was the first full year of the ‘shared space’ design.

The five proposals will be showcased at St John’s Business Centre at St John’s Church, Cedar Square, on Thursday and Friday, and people can also take part in an online survey.

Council leader Coun Simon Blackburn has pledged to listen to what the public wants on the issue.

The exhibitions at St John’s take place on Thursday and Friday between 10am until 7pm.

Consultation closes on May 31. To take part in the online survey, visit www.blackpool.gov.uk/promenade

HAVE YOUR SAY... What option for the Prom’s future would you support? Please leave your preferred option at the start of your comment below.

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