New Preston road layout is not safe for blind and disabled, say campaigners
Campaigners have slammed the re-design of a major roundabout as part of the University of Central Lancashire’s £200 masterplan.
The National Federation of the Blind claims the “Adelphi roundabout” in Preston marginalises partially sighted and disabled people because of the few controlled crossings incorporated.
The junction has recently reopened after months of work.
But Sarah Gayton, Shared Space Coordinator of the NFB, said that at the heart of the new road system there were courtesy crossings – which were no good to blind or partially sighted people.
She said: ‘Blind, partially sighted and disabled people have yet again been marginalised by this scheme.
“The lack of controlled green man pedestrian crossings at the heart of the development means the students who rely on them to safely cross the road will have to take the long way around to access the new student services building independently – leaving a generation of students disadvantaged from the start.
“Not to mention the negative impact on staff and visitors who need to work and access the new building,” she added.
The University of Central Lancashire and Lancashire County Council said in a joint statement: "From the very start of the planning process safety for all, including the visually impaired, cyclists and motorists, was a vital consideration.
"The University consulted widely to ensure all voices were heard and recommendations from the consultation process were taken on board to help inform the final design.
"Design aspects which were changed as a result of the consultation included the widening of pavements, greater definition of kerbs and the use of different materials to make the space easy to navigate for all users."
They added: "We would also remind people the scheme isn’t complete yet.
"Once finished, it will include new signal controlled crossings."