TRANSPORT NI will not implement a stop/go system at the Johnston Bridge roadworks in Enniskillen, despite claims from a local businessman that a verbal agreement was in place.
Chairman of Enniskillen Business Partnership Jonathan Styles told the Herald discussions took place with a principal engineer involved in the project and a agreement was reached on July 24 to put in the system on Monday July 27. 12 days on however and no such system is in place.
However, in response to the claims a spokesman from Transport NI said: “Transport NI is not aware of any commitment to implement stop/go boards. However, there was a commitment by TransportNI to monitor the traffic flow within and around the town to inform decisions on traffic management arrangements and this monitoring continues.
“Transport NI gave careful consideration to using stop-go boards at the bridge but remains of the view that the one way system, coupled with the adjustments to the signal timings at Gaol Square, is the most efficient way to deal with what is unavoidable congestion.
“To implement stop/go boards would result in overall slower movement of traffic owing to the time required during every signal changeover.
This measure would result in a build-up of traffic in both directions. Such an impact would be much greater on the western approaches to the Johnston Bridges due to the proximity of the roundabout and the lack of alternative options for road users coming from this part of the town.”
Despite adjustments to signal timings at Gaol Square Mr Styles remains unconvinced they are having any effect on the traffic.
“I had to go and see a customer today (Monday) and come back into town from the Irvinestown direction at 12.30 this afternoon. Now the queue started basically at the bottom of the link road as you go up to St Michael’s. Now I went up through Cooper Crescent, down by Dunnes Stores and straight in no problem, but those poor people who don’t know the ins and outs of Enniskillen they probably had at least a 45 minute queue to get into town and I feel very sorry for them.
“Now the engineers tell us that a special priority system had been placed on the traffic lights at the Gaol Square, but I tell you I didn’t see it. I had no idea there was any sort of priority for traffic coming in from the Irvinestown Road.”
Transport NI has confirmed that the work at the northern side of Johnston Bridge is continuing on programme and it is expected that it will be complete and reopened to two way traffic on Thursday 27 August as scheduled.
Yesterday (Tuesday) traffic lights were in use at the roadworks as an alternative means to facilitate the ambulance going against the direction of the one way system. The lights are on permanent green for traffic heading towards Cherrymount except when an ambulance needs to get through.
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