Summit held to tackle traffic jams in Holbeach
Reduced speed limits, new cycleways and footways are some of the ideas that could be used to ease traffic in Holbeach.
Business and education leaders, bus operators, parish, district and county leaders met in the town on Thursday to try and come up with a new transport strategy for Holbeach.
The meeting was organised by Holbeach county councillor Nick Worth to find what effects the A17/A151 Peppermint Junction roundabout was having on traffic volumes in Holbeach town centre since it opened last December.
Coun Worth said: "There was a good mix of people, retailers, parish councillors and the principal of University Academy Holbeach, Steve Baragwanath, who were at the meeting.
"We were presented with some statistics of how many people uses cars and bicycles to go to work.
"The statistics showed that whilst there had been a reduction in HGVs coming through Holbeach town centre since the Peppermint Junction roundabout was put in, the level of traffic generally in South Holland is pretty stable.
"However, that is clearly going to increase because about 2,000 houses are expected to be built in Holbeach over the next 20 years.
The meeting, which took place at the National Centre for Food Manufacturing in Holbeach, took place ten years on from the launch of a Holbeach Parish Plan which, as one of its aims, called for "longer term solutions to traffic congestion on High Street".
Coun Worth said: "A thought came from the meeting to reduce speed limits in the town, or to extend the 30mph limit.
"But one of the more exciting options is the potential for cycleways and footways as better ways to get round the town.
"The idea is to try and get the people of Holbeach to use their cars less and to make it easier for people to either walk or cycle round the town.
"It was quite an interesting evening just to hear what people has to say and, at the end of the day, everybody was united in saying that we need to make the town more pedestrian-friendly."
A final transport strategy is expected to be completed in early 2019 and will aim to:
· Support people travelling as part of their daily lives;
· Influence travel behaviour;
· Prioritise walking and cycling;
· Promote public transport;
· Provide for traffic while reducing its negative impacts.
Coun Worth said: "One particular area that we're looking at is the five-way junction at the centre of town which most people who were at the meeting felt works reasonably well.
"But there were thoughts as to whether something could be done at the Park Road and, although it takes a little bit of time to put all the strategies together, we can look for funding once we know what the costs are going to be."