Roadworks start on busy route

Work on a £4.6 million plan to widen Sheffield’s inner ring road is continuing, with the scheme due to be completed by summer 2020.

Saturday, 2nd March 2019, 2:08 pm
Updated Wednesday, 24th April 2019, 4:33 pm

Sheffield Council went ahead with its plan to widen Derek Dooley Way between Corporation Street and Savile Street despite concerns from dozens of residents.

After concerns were raised about increasing pollution and traffic, the decision was called in for scrutiny and it was discussed at an economic and environmental wellbeing scrutiny meeting where about a dozen residents came to ask questions.

After two hours of scrutiny, it was decided that the plans would go ahead but with a closer eye on its progress.

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The council said both traffic congestion and journey times on the Inner Ring Road were increasing, particularly during the morning and evening peak hours.

It said: “One of the worst sections is between Sheffield Parkway and Penistone Road. This section needs more road capacity and improvements to the operation and layout of the signal junctions.

“This will allow increased traffic generated by future growth in the city centre and its economy to be accommodated.”

Speaking at the meeting in January, Coun Douglas Johnson, representative for City ward, said: “This whole scheme seems to be based on belief, not evidence.”

But Coun Jack Scott, the then cabinet member for transport and development, denied the report was lacking in detail.

He said: “This scheme will at worst maintain air quality in that area and at best improve air quality in that area.

“I’m quite clear that I need to take action, which will sometimes be controversial, to improve air quality but this is not an air quality scheme.

“I’ve heard people say it is not sustainable – which is understandable but I’ve not heard anyone say it will be bad for pedestrians or cyclists.”

He added: “The stark challenges we face in our city cannot be avoided, but a scheme that improves bus times and makes it safer for pedestrians is absolutely what we should be doing.”