PRESTON’S roads are some of the most congested in the county – with five commuter routes shamed in the top 10 slowest in the county.
Moor Lane, Strand Road and Deepdale Road are all been ranked in the top 10 for the slowest average commutes in Lancashire in a report by the Department of Transport. Today, commuters hailed the report saying it vindicates what they’ve been saying for years.
Jessica Eastham, who works at The Liquidated Clearance Centre in Oyston Mill, off West Strand Road, said: “Strand Road is a nightmare, every day I get stuck in it. The traffic lights don’t seem to let many cars through and there’s a lot of turnings off Strand Road for shops and houses, which doesn’t help. But what can be done? You can’t make the road any wider.”
Fellow commuter Dave Wilson, of Interdec Fireplaces of Preston in Oyston Mill, said: “When I get out onto the road at about 5pm, it’s queuing all the way down.
“I think one of the main issues is the lights under the bridge at the top, where you get on the fly-over. They’re not in sync with the other lights along the road and you only get about six cars through at any one time.”
County Coun Carl Crompton, who represents both the Moor Lane and Strand Road areas, said: “I’m not surprised in the slightest at these findings. These are main arterial roads into the city, and it’s getting worse because of the sheer volume of traffic. I think the main people affected are those commuting in and out of the city for work at peak times.
“There is work going on looking at the issue, but the best way to tackle it is by car sharing and taking public transport.”
But not all commuters agreed with the findings.
A spokesman for New City VIP Taxi’s, based in Moor Lane, said: “I don’t think Moor Lane’s too bad, there’s definitely worse roads in Preston.
“Our drivers don’t get stuck in traffic around here, so it’s not affecting us.”
The Department for Transport carried out a survey of every A-road in Lancashire between April and June by measuring the average speed achieved by vehicles during the weekday rush-hour between 7 and 10am.
Hazel Straw, LCC transport planning manager, said: “The recent report on congestion on local A roads gives an overview of how journeys are changing across the country and the north west of England, including those on the roads managed by Lancashire County Council. Traffic levels are increasing and are expected to continue growing in future, mirroring the growth in Lancashire’s economy, and one of our top priorities is to secure the investment in Lancashire’s transport infrastructure. This is needed to ensure people can continue to travel efficiently, and that our transport networks, not just our roads, will support economic growth, rather than act as a brake due to increasing congestion.”
A spokesman for the Department for Transport said: “A combination of increases in levels of traffic on the A road network and intermittent periods of high rainfall levels are likely to have contributed to the fall in speeds.”
Nationally the report found that roads across England are getting slower, with average speeds during rush hour falling from 24.4 mph to 23.8mph.
The National Department for Transport also revealed that average speeds for A roads in the North West had fallen on average by 3.3 per cent since June 2014.
The A road with the quickest average speed in Lancashire is the A565 westbound connecting Liverpool to Tarleton where morning commuters clock in with an average speed of 45.4 mph.
All of the roads in the top 10 slowest commutes were in Greater London.