ePetition details

Bidston flyover cycle path

We the undersigned petition the council to Review the impact the new cycle lane is having from reeds lane to the bidston roundabout, and the impact it is having on the flow of traffic at peak hours and the bottleneck it has created at the lights at aldi/reeds lane. It has been noted by residents that the emergency services have been unable to pass the stationary traffic caused by this bottle neck.

The cycle lane development was not made public until its installation was authorIsed and after completion was found to be flawed by the congestion it has created especially during peak hours.

Started by: Norman Chatten

This ePetition ran from 18/06/2022 to 30/07/2022 and has now finished.

287 people signed this ePetition.

Council response

The A533 Fender Lane scheme extends from Hoylake Rd, Moreton (from its junction with Reeds Lane) to Hoylake Rd 'Tesco Roundabout' (Bidston). The scheme includes a reduction of dual carriageway to single carriageway to provide a cycle lane in each direction. The scheme sits within a wider programme of active travel initiatives developed to reduce dependency on car-based journeys and through segregation provide increased confidence for users of active travel modes.

The scheme was initially identified as part of the Department for Transport (DfT) Active Travel Tranche 1 Covid response programme.
In July 2020 consultation was undertaken with the Leader of the Council, the Portfolio Lead for Transport, Ward Members for Bidston and St James, Ward Members for Leasowe and Moreton East, and Chair and Spokes of Business Overview and Scrutiny Committee.
At this stage the DfT advised that to support the Covid response Councils were required to expedite the delivery of measures active travel and set out that public consultation was not required. However due to the lack of infrastructure available within the supply chain the scheme did not progress within the required timescales and therefore prior to delivery it was considered appropriate by the Council to undertake further member and stakeholder consultation including a public consultation.

In February 2021 Ward Councillors from the Bidston & St James and Leasowe & Moreton East Wards were re-consulted, and the Chair and Spokespersons of Environment, Climate Emergency and Transport Committee were consulted. In March 2021 public consultation was undertaken with local residents, landowners, and businesses. Consultation was also undertaken with the Emergency Services, Freight Transport Association, Road Haulage Association, Merseytravel and Wirral’s Active Travel Forum including the RNIB. Letters with plans were delivered to residents, businesses and schools found within the vicinity of the scheme, informing them of the proposals.

During the consultation period, (Monday 1 March 2021 to Friday 19 March 2021), 13 objections (of which 6 provided no supporting information/reason for objecting) and 8 expressions of support were received. The feedback from the consultation was discussed with the Chairs and Spokespersons of the Economy, Regeneration and Development Committee and the Chairs and Spokespersons of the Environment, Climate Emergency and Transport Committees and in line with the resolution of the 30 June 2021 Policy and Resources Committee the Director of Regeneration and Place in consultation with the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and the Chairs and Spokespersons of the Economy, Regeneration and Development and the Environment, Climate Emergency and Transport Committees approved the scheme for implementation.

Emergency services were consulted in advance of the delivery of the scheme. It should be noted that emergency vehicles operating under blue lights will find the safest and fastest way possible to arrive at an emergency incident. This could include safely using any section of the highway, including where necessary segregated cycle links, which should be clear of motor traffic. There are 4 metre spaces between the wands and these are flexible and in the event of an emergency it would be considered reasonable for this space to be used temporarily. Merseyside Fire & Rescue stated they had no concerns from an operational response perspective. The Northwest Ambulance Service did not respond. Merseyside Police responded to the consultation highlighting the incline of the route and questioned if it was attractive to cyclists – this was responded to by confirming the route is already used by cyclists and therefore these measures make it safer. Merseyside Police also responded raising a query to see what traffic modelling had been undertaken to understand impact on junctions, travel times and displaced traffic movements. In advance of the delivery of the scheme Wirral Council commissioned Mott Macdonald Consultancy to model the impact of the scheme on Wirral’s highway network using the Wirral SATURN traffic model. The modelling showed that ‘the junctions at either end will be operating within capacity’ and that there should be ‘no notable change in average delays across the highway network, local to Fender Lane. The modelling report also notes that traffic redistributes over a period of months across the network – this traffic redistribution observation is reinforced by the Government who ask for monitoring of schemes to be over a long period and quick decisions not to be taken regarding removal or modification.

To support this, we have been monitoring the traffic using the CCTV camera near Bidston Station Approach. Early monitoring has shown small queues on occasions for vehicles heading towards Moreton – these clear quickly and they do not appear to be at a set time or a regular occurrence, however we will continue to monitor the area. Since implementation we have not received any reports from emergency services regarding any issues or delays. We are also aware that the Birkenhead News have contacted emergency services regarding claims of delays since the introduction of the scheme and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service (MFRS) and the Northwest Ambulance Service. Merseyside Police did not respond to the request for feedback however the Northwest Ambulance Service reported that they “haven’t received any major concerns regarding the new cycle lanes” and Merseyside Fire and Rescue said, “there are no reports of MFRS vehicles being held up due to the new cycle lane”.

As with all new schemes we are continuing to monitor the impact, including the use by cyclists and the operation of the surrounding network. The Council has an established cross party Active Travel Members working group and reports will be brought to that group in due course to update members regarding active travel schemes which have been delivered, including Fender Lane.