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South Of Sheffield Traffic Madness

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Tony said:

Sheffield's version of a "ring road" (for there are many types) is that a motorist at the hub who wishes to drive to anther part of the hub is required to travel along a spoke to the wheel, around the wheel, back down a spoke to the other part of the hub.

 

It's difficult to describe in words, but for example if you are in the John Lewis car park and you wish to drive to Howden House, a journey of 2-3 miles taking 15 minutes is required. Try it for yourself. 

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/dir/John+Lewis+Customer+Car+Park,+31+Burgess+St,+Sheffield+S1+2HF/Howden+House,+1+Union+St,+Sheffield+S1+2SH/@53.3812017,-1.4868128,14z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m14!4m13!1m5!1m1!1s0x48798281b96162a1:0x113f18d071627ff2!2m2!1d-1.4711804!2d53.3793071!1m5!1m1!1s0x487982817cecf0ef:0xc9353fcd92970d0a!2m2!1d-1.4702571!2d53.3782856!3e0?hl=en-GB 

 

This is what is colloquially known as a Horlicks. There are many reasons for it but it is still a Horlicks. It creates additional traffic, congestion, pollution and danger to other people. 

 

 

 

On bikes having priority, it's a well known road planning method. All that really changes is that the give-way junctions are for cars, not bikes. For example, the Penistone Road cycle lane would be a continuous stripe of red tarmac all the way from Grenoside to town. If a car wishes to turn left to exit Penistone Rd, or right to enter it, they wait to give way to bikes that are on the red stripe.

 

So for example, a roundabout where cars give way to bikes;

maxresdefault.jpg

 

Straight lines are easy

maxresdefault.jpg

 

 

T junctions are a breeze

1*RJxkoQ95IitBUXNRwZAbwQ.png

 

 

I am certain that Planner 1 will be very familiar with this highway design where cycle lanes have priority and motorists have to give way.  I have a hunch that he and his colleagues would adopt it like a shot if the political will was there. If only highways engineers and traffic planners could resist their natural urges to over-design we might be in with a chance of enticing people to leave their vehicle at home. 

So you have purposefully picked a journey no one would reasonably make by car, to illustrate why the ring road doesn't work for a type of journey it wasn't really put in place for.

 

I don't know if you have travelled much by bike in Sheffield or any other UK city, but my extensive experience tells me that drivers park in bike lines, or ignore them, and regularly don't stop at the type of junctions you have illustrated. They rarely stop outside the existing ASL boxes, so to put your trust in a driver to stop on a bike junction is tempting fate in the extreme. Your Penistone Rd example would see cars turning left across in front of cyclists travelling alongside them. Happens regularly on Ecclesall Rd heading into town, cars that have only just overtaken, then turn left across in front of riders, putting them at risk of serious injury. It has happened to me, resulting in concussion and a broken shoulder.

 

Interesting to note that your photos are European mainland examples, Netherlands or Belgium at a guess, where it's a pleasure to cycle on an extensive network of cycle paths, and unlike your standard UK driver, there is little or no aggression shown to other road users.

Edited by Bargepole23

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16 hours ago, ads36 said:

then you should reconsider, it's only a few hundred metres.

 

i'm absolutely in support of transport planning where very short journeys are deliberately made more inconvenient to drive, than to walk.

 

(you can still make this journey by car if you wish)

 

13 hours ago, Bargepole23 said:

So you have purposefully picked a journey no one would reasonably make by car, to illustrate why the ring road doesn't work for a type of journey it wasn't really put in place for.

 

I don't know if you have travelled much by bike in Sheffield or any other UK city, but my extensive experience tells me that drivers park in bike lines, or ignore them, and regularly don't stop at the type of junctions you have illustrated. They rarely stop outside the existing ASL boxes, so to put your trust in a driver to stop on a bike junction is tempting fate in the extreme. Your Penistone Rd example would see cars turning left across in front of cyclists travelling alongside them. Happens regularly on Ecclesall Rd heading into town, cars that have only just overtaken, then turn left across in front of riders, putting them at risk of serious injury. It has happened to me, resulting in concussion and a broken shoulder.

 

Interesting to note that your photos are European mainland examples, Netherlands or Belgium at a guess, where it's a pleasure to cycle on an extensive network of cycle paths, and unlike your standard UK driver, there is little or no aggression shown to other road users.

Honestly, people make this forum so difficult and unfriendly with these confrontational responses instead of trying to have a conversation where we all learn a bit. 

 

The example trip is for demonstration purposes of how the wheel and spoke ringroad design works. It is not a complaint about a particular journey. 

 

Yes, I ride a bike. I travel by foot - often all the way to the centre from the very edge of the city, I occasionally drive, but less than the other modes of transport. I use the train,  I fly and I often use the bus too so I feel reasonably enlightened about the different modes and how they interface with each other. I am also a designer of urban environments and understand how people respond to good design and poor design.  I feel my experience and credentials are as good as most to  be able to comment without needing to be taught a lesson about how it is in the real world. I like cars but I like people and nice places more.

 

You are quite right to point out that the photos are, I believe, Dutch. What you might not be aware of is that until the 1970's Holland's highway infrastructure was just like the UK's. They changed it with good urban design that was centred around people and low impact transport so that cars were given third place behind pedestrians and bikes. Your complaint that Sheffield drivers couldn't do is is both unsubstantiated and judging by the Dutch example, nonsensical. I suppose the only complaint left is that Sheffield is too hilly, but since most bike journeys in Sheffield are on the hilly west that falls away too, and we can always walk if a bike is too difficult.

 

People adapt and change. https://www.dutchreach.org/car-child-murder-protests-safer-nl-roads/

 

Also, we will all have noticed that nobody in the Dutch photos feels the need to wear either a helmet or hi-viz and that there are people of all ages from children to pensioners. The graphs in the above link tells you how safe Dutch roads are now, and how dangerous they were when their roads were like ours. 

 

I don't happen to think that congestion charging is the answer, nor is building more roads, nor is restricting access to anything but the very inner core of the city. The solutions lie in changing habits by giving people better options to choose from instead of making existing options worse.

 

We can keep complaining about how terrible the UK / Sheffield roads are or we can have open minds to actual evidence, be a little less selfish and give confidence and motivation to people like Planner 1 and the politicians that fund them to change things with more carrot and less stick. 

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Posted (edited)
On ‎06‎/‎01‎/‎2020 at 12:52, Bargepole23 said:

Ok. I could get to Selby today or tomorrow for 13 quid by train. 

 

There are few circumstances where the general public require an anytime return. I use the train quite a bit for business travel, and would either buy a single each way as and when I needed it, or if I was certain of my travel times, like the majority of commuters, would buy a fixed time ticket.

Actually most people couldn`t get to Selby for that price, because most people would also have to pay to get to and from the station at each end.....

 

I strongly disagree with you about people not wanting turn up and go a flexible tickets. I admit most times I make longer journeys by train I buy advance purchase inflexible tickets but they are undeniably less convenient and generate extra stress in case you miss the train or have to delay your journey back. That makes me less likely to go by train in the first place. Classic example, a few years ago we had to fly from Gatwick. Driving there is an absolute pig, so, in theory, getting eth train would work quite well, you just change at St Pancras. However, if the return plane is delayed and you miss your train you`re expected to buy a complete new (very expensive on the day) ticket. Alternatively you`d have to build loads of contingency time in for the return journey to be more certain of getting your train, but we didn't want to do that for obvious reasons. Result ? We drove, even though we'd have rather got the train.

Edited by Justin Smith

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are we losing the idea of this,it was supposed to be a chat about south of sheffield roads?

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3 hours ago, Tony said:

We can keep complaining about how terrible the UK / Sheffield roads are or we can have open minds to actual evidence, be a little less selfish and give confidence and motivation to people like Planner 1 and the politicians that fund them to change things with more carrot and less stick. 

I think we have to remember that we are 50 years behind Holland, so we can't expect overnight change.

 

Sheffield Council are looking to put in Dutch style cycle facilities, but they (and others) need the money to do it. Mainstream transport funding for Councils  in England is approximately half what it was a few years ago due to government austerity cuts.

 

In London, they have Mini Holland initiatives in some Boroughs which are funded by Transport for London. These have however attracted a lot of controversy and some very heated protests from people who were very against them. Change isn't easy or straightforward.

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The Mini Holland's are certainly interesting, not just for the furore they create (trees!). ISTR an informal study up in Walkley that recently looked at transport modes and shopping where the motor car and the need for adjacent parking was way down the list. That's encouraging for district centres and it seems to be being reflected in the Mini Holland schemes so it will be good if a UK body of evidence will be pulled together over time. 

 

On here I have given public bodies a bad rap over the years (and will continue to do so) not because I think they only employ incompetents rather than the usual mix of good, bad and totally unless staff, but because the politically led system means that they are institutionally incapable of good decision making unless it is very short term. Politicians quite naturally think continually about elections so everything is tinged with short-termism with a layer of whatever ideology floats their boat - who wouldn't?!

 

Neither am I convinced that money / lack thereof is the cause of all ills although it is an easy excuse for poor institutional performance. If we fill transport planning departments with transport planners we will keep getting solutions that look like transport, when that's not necessarily what people actually want or need. In other words, if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem is treated as a nail. 

 

I'm totally unconvinced that building and widening more roads, tinkering with junctions and traffic light timings, introducing charging  or low emission zones, forcing cars out or introducing eye watering parking charges is going to have the overall desired effect of reducing congestion and it's effects. It's not done for half a century so there's little reason to think it will any time soon. 

 

I'm equally unconvinced that we should try to sustain our city centres by putting them on life-support. The way we use our urban environment changes every couple of decades and virtually any building that isn't an actual house has a limited useful lifespan of 20-30 years so there's no point in trying to plan new commercial buildings including apartment blocks to last two hundred. The needs of changing technology and working patterns will make a building redundant long before bricks go out of fashion. We should expect and plan for change while maximising the existing infrastructure that does have a longer lifespan - roads mainly. 

 

I'd like to see clear demarcations created between people zones and vehicle zones. So yes, pedestrianise Division St (for example) but at the same time re-reintroduce traffic on all the adjoining side roads that have been cut off, restricted or one-wayed. Bring those millions of square metres of expensive tarmac road infrastructure back into use and permanently eliminate that which will be reallocated to people. Eliminate as many controlled junctions, road markings and signs as humanly possible - you'll be very aware of the various experiments in Friesland - and force drivers interact with their environment and other drivers so that passive rather than active road safety takes over. Engineers and planners must resist the urge to over-design and fall back on highway design guides when simple human focused (not rule based) solutions can be implemented. 

 

That's a bit of a spiel, but hopefully there are a few thoughts to move the conversation on. 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Tony said:

The Mini Holland's are certainly interesting, not just for the furore they create (trees!). ISTR an informal study up in Walkley that recently looked at transport modes and shopping where the motor car and the need for adjacent parking was way down the list. That's encouraging for district centres and it seems to be being reflected in the Mini Holland schemes so it will be good if a UK body of evidence will be pulled together over time. 

 

On here I have given public bodies a bad rap over the years (and will continue to do so) not because I think they only employ incompetents rather than the usual mix of good, bad and totally unless staff, but because the politically led system means that they are institutionally incapable of good decision making unless it is very short term. Politicians quite naturally think continually about elections so everything is tinged with short-termism with a layer of whatever ideology floats their boat - who wouldn't?!

 

Neither am I convinced that money / lack thereof is the cause of all ills although it is an easy excuse for poor institutional performance. If we fill transport planning departments with transport planners we will keep getting solutions that look like transport, when that's not necessarily what people actually want or need. In other words, if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem is treated as a nail. 

 

I'm totally unconvinced that building and widening more roads, tinkering with junctions and traffic light timings, introducing charging  or low emission zones, forcing cars out or introducing eye watering parking charges is going to have the overall desired effect of reducing congestion and it's effects. It's not done for half a century so there's little reason to think it will any time soon. 

 

I'm equally unconvinced that we should try to sustain our city centres by putting them on life-support. The way we use our urban environment changes every couple of decades and virtually any building that isn't an actual house has a limited useful lifespan of 20-30 years so there's no point in trying to plan new commercial buildings including apartment blocks to last two hundred. The needs of changing technology and working patterns will make a building redundant long before bricks go out of fashion. We should expect and plan for change while maximising the existing infrastructure that does have a longer lifespan - roads mainly. 

 

I'd like to see clear demarcations created between people zones and vehicle zones. So yes, pedestrianise Division St (for example) but at the same time re-reintroduce traffic on all the adjoining side roads that have been cut off, restricted or one-wayed. Bring those millions of square metres of expensive tarmac road infrastructure back into use and permanently eliminate that which will be reallocated to people. Eliminate as many controlled junctions, road markings and signs as humanly possible - you'll be very aware of the various experiments in Friesland - and force drivers interact with their environment and other drivers so that passive rather than active road safety takes over. Engineers and planners must resist the urge to over-design and fall back on highway design guides when simple human focused (not rule based) solutions can be implemented. 

 

That's a bit of a spiel, but hopefully there are a few thoughts to move the conversation on. 

Fair enough. To take you back to your example of John Lewis to Howden House, how would you achieve a shorter route for that or any other crosstown route without creating rat runs and through routes across town which would be nose to tail cars and fumes for much of the day?

 

Or rather in broader terms, how do you achieve short, direct cross town routes whilst simultaneously having the main central roads pedestrianised, and preventing rat runs.

Edited by Bargepole23

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Please get back and remain on topic.

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thank you for that ,as the subject is about south of sheffield road problems,ie st james area,meadowhead,and woodseats areas,its a terrible mess ,with long queues ect,how do we sort it thanks

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Close down all businesses that are likely to cause traffic or at the very least massive (like quadruple) business rates.

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53 minutes ago, bassett one said:

thank you for that ,as the subject is about south of sheffield road problems,ie st james area,meadowhead,and woodseats areas,its a terrible mess ,with long queues ect,how do we sort it thanks

There is no easy solution.

 

You could increase road capacity and/or build new roads. You could extend Supertram up to Meadowhead and beyond.

 

All of it is hugely expensive and likely to take a very long time to deliver.

 

The other alternative is walk and cycle more, use public transport more, use your car less.

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, tinfoilhat said:

Close down all businesses that are likely to cause traffic or at the very least massive (like quadruple) business rates.

I would be more likely to tax businesses for every car driver that has a start time of 9am and a finish time of 5pm of £1 per employee per day and 50p per employee that stars at 8.30am and finishes at 4.30pm

The A57 should be turned West to go straight through the middle of Birley Wood golf course to the junction of Chesterfield Road A61 with Meadowhead and go South of Beauchief acroos Ringinglow before joining up to the A57 after the Rivelin junction. football trophies football medals

Edited by Hadron

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