CHICANES AS A METHOD OF TRAFFIC CALMING – HIGHWAYS OPINION

A number of local residents have asked why chicanes were not part of the recent consultation by the council on the traffic calming measures that are to be introduced on Adel Lane at its junction with St Helens Lane and Long Causeway. The same issue was raised at the last Adel Association meeting. Set out below is the explanation I have been given as to why they are not recommended by Highways.

“Within the latest publication on traffic calming (LTN 1/07) the Department for Transport state that:-

Attitude surveys conducted into traffic calming schemes suggest that the public dislikes horizontal deflections, such as chicanes, more than they dislike road humps. Horizontal carriageway deflection such as localised narrowing a and chicanes, have been installed to influence vehicular speeds, though not alway successfully. In the case of kerb build-outs and pinch points, the narrowed carriageway, even if reduced to a single lane, still allows most vehicles to be driven relatively quickly through the available gap, unless there is opposing traffic to prevent this occurring.

A study of traffic calming schemes using horizontal deflections by Hass-klau & Nold (1994) indicated that balanced vehicle flows is one of the most important aspects when opting for localised road narrowing. Unfortunately in many residential street and on most distributor routes the traffic flow is tidal (prominent traffic flow is in one direction in a morning and visa- versa on an evening). Evidence shows that in these cases the prominent traffic flows do not create gaps in the traffic flow and the queuing opposing traffic aim for gaps which are unsafe and accidents increase.”