Friday, December 01, 2017
The Fishergate bus lane cameras in central Preston will be enforced again from Monday, 4 December.
The aim of the bus lanes and vehicle restrictions is to ease traffic flow in the city centre, providing a boost for shops and businesses, and improving the experience for shoppers in the main retail areas.
Lancashire County Council initially only issued warning notices, to help make people aware of the changes, ahead of full enforcement restarting again. People misusing the bus lanes from Monday will be subject to a Penalty Charge Notice.
Hundreds of people have been misusing the bus lanes since Monday 6 November, when the cameras were switched back on.
These bus lanes are located on Fishergate between Mount Street and Corporation Street, and between the junction with Butler St and Corporation Street.
They were introduced to reduce congestion that has affected the city centre at peak times over many years, especially in the build-up to Christmas.
Improved permanent signing has been introduced in and around Fishergate, as well as additional temporary signing, to make drivers aware of the bus lanes ahead of the enforcement restarting.
As part of this work, Lune Street was made two-way on an experimental basis from Monday 13 November, with new access created onto Ringway. This will be evaluated for approximately six months, and will inform the development of more permanent plans - if all goes well.
County Councillor Keith Iddon, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "From Monday, drivers who misuse the bus lanes will receive a penalty charge notice. We don't want anyone to get caught out by these cameras, which is why we introduced the short grace period.
"We're happy if we don't make a penny from the cameras, as it means that people are doing the right thing.
"There was a significant increase in the number of drivers ignoring these restrictions when we suspended the camera enforcement, which showed that we need additional measures in place. The numbers have come down since we started issuing warning notices, but some people are still choosing to misuse the bus lanes.
"These bus lanes have removed an average of 2,700 vehicles every day from the section between Mount Street and Corporation Street. We know that bus journeys have become more reliable and journey times have reduced."
"People using the shopping centre car park and driving through Avenham were particularly affected when the bus lanes were first introduced. The Lune Street changes are helping to resolve some of the issues that we identified during the trial period and improve the overall experience in the city centre for drivers and pedestrians."
Four large new signs have been added on Fishergate itself, as well as Fox Street, Lune Street and Chapel Street.
Earlier this year, the independent adjudicator found that the legal order for the bus lane between Mount Street and Corporation Street was properly made, but allowed several appeals on the basis of the "sufficiency" of signing, and suggested changes would be needed.
Since the Fishergate improvement work took place, wider pavements on Fishergate have provided more space for pedestrians, new pavement cafes have been created, and modern street furniture has been introduced, including more seating.
Find out more on the county council's website
Tagged as: Roads, Parking and Travel