Anger over ‘stupid’ place to put crossing

jpco-18-12-13 Southgate Medical Centre road crossing story (Pic by Jon Rigby)

jpco-18-12-13 Southgate Medical Centre road crossing story (Pic by Jon Rigby)

The placement of a new Brighton Road crossing has been branded “stupid” by a Southgate pensioner.

The construction of a new traffic island for Southgate Medical Centre started on Monday last week (December 9).

Brenda Tidd, of Wakehurst Drive, who has campaigned for it for more than two years, was shocked to find it had been placed a two minute walk from the centre.

She said: “What a stupid place to put it.

“If people come from Wakehurst Road they’ve got to walk up the road to the Half Moon and then go back on themselves.

“I just cannot believe that’s what they are doing there.”

She feared for the safety of elderly people and schoolchildren who use the A-road and called for a “proper” pedestrian crossing.

She added: “The speed is unbelievable. It needs a proper crossing, not just an island in the middle of the road.

“There’s a lot of elderly people that go to that surgery.”

The crossing is due to be completed within a couple of weeks. The project was a condition of planning permission for the medical centre which was granted in 2009.

West Sussex County Council originally planned to have a traffic island crossing near the junction of Wakehurst Drive.

Brenda added: “They are just palming us off again.

“It feels like you’re just banging your head against a wall all the time.”

Cllr Michael Jones (Lab, Southgate) said he would press the council on the issue.

He initially welcomed the start of the works as an “early Christmas present”. However, after learning of the relocation, he said: “I am frankly staggered no-one thought it worth mentioning to us.

“I will continue to press the council to do something to address the issue.”

A spokesman for West Sussex County Council said Crawley Borough Council revised its planning consent in 2011 after serious safety concerns with the construction of the traffic island were identified.

The contractor which was due to build the island went into administration shortly after gaining planning permission in 2012. This caused delays in the crossing being built. The crossing is to have electrically-lighted bollards added in January 2014.




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