Highways bosses grilled over controversial bus lane plans for Preston

Fishergate, Preston

Fishergate, Preston

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Highways bosses from Lancashire County Council have been grilled by city leaders about controversial road schemes in Preston.

Preston Council’s overview and scrutiny management committee met with County Hall officers to discuss bus lane plans for Tithebarn Street, as well as the Fishergate bus lane.

Fears and concerns were raised around the suitability of the schemes for people with disabilities, as well as the communication of the changes and the impact on businesses.

Worries were also voiced about the proposed changes near the bus station and the fact many councillors didn’t know about them, but officers said they had been in the public domain for 12 months.

Questions were raised about taxi access to the Town Hall in Lancaster Road, and officers said more consultation was to take place with details of the plans still to be finalised.

Coun Pauline Brown said: “I don’t think it’s been properly thought out from a disabled person’s point of view.”

Lancashire County Council’s network manager Daniel Herbert said a full equality impact assessment would be done.

He said there had been traffic problems in the area for 10-15 years and said they were “not new”, and said things had “significantly improved”.

But Coun Christine Abram said some traders had reported a reduction in footfall.

Coun David Borrow said: “As Preston gets bigger we are going to have to accept there will be painful changes to manage the traffic. We are in the process of moving from a northern industrial town to a city.”