Penistone Road and Shalesmoor: How the new £22m improvements will change the way you travel

There’s changes ahead for Shalesmoor, Penistone Road and Rutland Road with a £22 million scheme to make it easier for motorists, cyclists, buses and trams to travel around.Matthew Reynolds, transport planning manager at Sheffield Council, talks us through the improvements.

Monday, 7th March 2022, 2:18 pm

Shalesmoor for motorists

Described as “an absolute nightmare” by Matthew. Motorists are stopped by a series of traffic lights, the lights cannot detect buses so they don’t get priority and it’s unpleasant for pedestrians trying to cross between the Supertram stop and Kelham Island.

The scheme would see the roundabout removed and replaced with traffic lights to allow free flow left turns, improving journey times and creating more space for public transport.

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Penistone Road and Shalesmoor will be improved with the £22m scheme

Matthew says: “We want to make sure that the traffic signals know when a bus is coming and give it priority so buses can flow through, to get the reliability and the journey time improvements.

“We’re also looking at putting in additional lanes which again, allows the bus to get to the front of the queue.

“If there is a breakdown in the flow of traffic elsewhere across the network such as Brook Hill roundabout, before you know it the whole thing is gridlocked. We’re trying to manage it on a more holistic basis.

“The fundamental change is altering the design from a signal controlled roundabout to a signal controlled junction.

A new right turn will be created at Rutland Road traffic lights, with better access for cyclists too

“Free-flowing left hand slip lanes will reduce conflict on the roundabout and allow some vehicles to bypass signals.”

Shalesmoor for pedestrians and cyclists

Matthew explains: “A lot of the pedestrian crossings were built a long time ago and don’t reflect where people want to get to.

“There’s a convoluted route from the tram stop to Kelham Island because you have to get through about three different crossing points. You can see people not using the crossings and just walking across the highway.

Shalesmoor roundabout will be removed and replaced with traffic lights

“We’re looking to reduce that to one crossing point across the ring road so people land where they want to go. We want to make it easy and to try to avoid people jumping over the railings.”

Wider footways, segregated cycle tracks and more direct crossing points will be created along the A61. All crossing facilities provided are Toucans, allowing both pedestrians and cyclists to use them.

Shalesmoor Supertram stop

Access to the tram network is fundamental. Matthew says: “We really want to increase the amount of people using Supertram as it’s a great asset for the city. It’s fantastic and we really need to be maximising it.

Shalesmoor Supertram stop could be renamed - possibly at Kelham Island stop

“We’ll be talking to the Mayoral Combined Authorities about how we can improve Shalesmoor tram stop and potentially rename it something which is more akin to what it is.

“The renaming has to go through the Office of Rail Regulation but it’s something which we are working on.”

Shalesmoor environment

Matthew says: “This is a gateway to the city so it will be done in high quality material. It’s not going to be asphalt and concrete kerb pavements, it’s going to be a much more attractive environment.

“Whether you are walking, driving, cycling or coming off public transport it’s going to feel like a good place to be, it’s going to feel safe, secure and high quality.

“It’s not just seen as a bit of road and pavement, we want greenery and sustainable drainage which is absolutely fundamental to this area, especially given the impact of the flooding within the River Don area.”

Rutland Road for cyclists

“There’s been a call for a light controlled crossing at the bottom for cyclists and pedestrians, plugging a significant gap on the Penistone Road cycle route,” says Matthew.

“The route then ties into the proposed Connecting Sheffield Kelham Island and Neepsend project, providing cyclists with a quieter and safer route towards West Bar in one direction and out to Hillsborough in the other.

“This will also feed into the leisure route of the Upper Don Valley Trail and the wider recreational cycling network in the area

“We’re trying to provide infrastructure for the cyclists who wouldn’t feel comfortable cycling on the road. That’s where we think we’re going to get the biggest growth in cycling, by providing the right environment for people.”

Bedford Street will also benefit from a segregated cycle link and greenery.

Rutland Road for motorists

Motorists currently can only turn left at the traffic lights so if they want to head north on Penistone Road, they have to turn left to Shalesmoor, go around and come back again.

There will be a new right turn from Rutland Road onto Penistone Road, freeing up traffic.

Rutland Road for pedestrians

The improved crossing will help people access the wider area, including the walking route towards Herries Road via the Upper Don Valley and outwards to the Peak District.

What happens next?

The council is bidding for funding from the Department for Transport. An outline business case will be submitted to Government in spring with plenty of opportunity for people to give feedback within the next phase of the design process.

It’s hoped work will begin in 2024 with a completion date of 2025. More information on the Shalesmoor Gateway scheme and the full plans are available here