Byker Bank highway works

The Council has recently finished changes to the junction of Byker Bank, Ford Street and Foundry Lane.  Anyone who travels this way will know that it can be a fast, busy route, and the aim of the scheme was to reduce speeds, improve safety for traffic coming out of Ford Street and Foundry Lane, provide a safe crossing point for pedestrians and create some space for cycling.

Four way traffic lights have been put in place, including an advanced green light for cyclists crossing Ouseburn Bridge from the west – this gives people on bikes a head start if they’re turning right into Ford Street or heading up Byker Bank. There is also a Pelican crossing for pedestrians, and cycle lanes on Ousbeburn Bridge and both of the uphill sections on Byker Bank and Cut Bank, plus a 20mph speed limit .

We asked some people for their first impressions of the scheme:

So pleased to see a pedestrian crossing here at last, I’m amazed there haven’t been any serious accidents in the past, especially given all the lorries and vans moving around here…

There are queues right back to Cut Bank during rush hour, and I waited a long time to get into Lime Street – why is the second set of lights so far back?  It’s slowing traffic down too much, people are taking short cuts along Albion Row, Leighton Street and Ouse Street – surely that can’t be a good thing?

It can take a while to get out of Foundry Lane now, but at least  when you do you know you’ve got right of way. I travel across the junction to Ford Street, and I’ve done this by bike and by car now, and particularly by bike it feels a lot safer – it’s a bit of a hill start and used to be pretty risky given the width of the road and the speeds people were travelling at.

At rush hour this morning the traffic was backed up all the way across Ouseburn Bridge from Cut Bank, so when the lights turned green for people heading in the opposite direction they were cutting into the cycle lane, it was all a bit messy.

Crossing Byker Bank by bike every day is now much safer! Thank you.

What do you think? Email us with your thoughts or any comments you’d like us to feed back to the Council –