Bad road junctions #2 Leicestershire Barkby Rd, Queniborough Rd

Bad road junctions #2 Leicestershire Barkby Rd, Queniborough Rd

This seems a simple T-junction in the countryside (on the road connecting the villages of Queniborough and Barkby where there is a turn off for Syston).

However, due to crazy drivers hurtling along the Queniborough Road they have had to fit huge traffic lights with extra long poles due to dips in the road. They can be seen from miles away.

The problem for cyclists is that Leicestershire County Council are committed to not slowing cars down. They have therefore placed sensors in the road a long way before you get to the junction. This means that when it is quiet a car will trigger a change in the lights well in advance so that they won’t have to stop or even slow down much.

However, as a cyclist when I trigger a change in the lights it happens so far away that I can’t get to and through the lights before they have changed again. So I end up either riding through a red light or waiting at the red light for a car to come along at high speed and trigger a change as I have no way to trigger the change myself.

Duh!

Given that the lanes around Barkby are used as rat races by cars trying to nip around the edge of Leicester a far better solution is to slow things down a lot. That is important as these lanes are used by many cyclists looking for a route into the countryside from Leicester.

I would have installed speed cameras to enforce a 30mph speed limit along this road (and 20mpg throughout Syston, Queniborough and Barkby)  combined with traffic lights (with cameras to catch anyone going through on red) that respond slowly to cars to ensure that they will always have a wait. Add a “table” speed hump for the whole junction and you are on the way to actually achieving better road safety and encouraging cyclists to think these roads are safer for them.

Sadly I understand that you can only put speed cameras where there have been crashes resulting in injury and I think these may have been too long ago to be used to justify cameras now. Also while Leicester has signed up for installing 20mph speed limits on residential roads (although it seems to me that it has not done much of this yet) I don’t think Leicestershire has signed up for it (more proof Leicestershire is not interested in encouraging pedestrians and cyclists).

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