Bradford Council is to start work soon on a scheme to make a busy Ilkley town centre junction safer for pedestrians crossing the road.
The Council has secured £50K from the Reopening High Streets Safely Fund to extend the kerb line and narrow Railway Road at its junction with Brook Street.
New paving and tarmac will be laid at the corner, near Station Plaza, where it meets Brook Street, and the area will be slightly extending, giving pedestrians a narrower width of road to cross. Tactile paving will also be laid at each side of this section Railway Road which aids people with visual impairments to negotiate crossing the road.
This is one of the busiest corners in Ilkley town centre, as it is near the train station and a number of car parks.
Cllr Alex Ross-Shaw, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration, Planning and Transport, said: “I am very pleased that this project is going ahead, as it will greatly improve the safety of this junction. It has long been a concern for members of the public.”
Ilkley Town Councillor Tom Franks says: “We are delighted to learn of the proposed improvements to the Railway Road junction. We have been in discussion with BMDC officers on this issue as part of our commitment to improving road safety in Ilkley”.
Ilkley District Councillor Anne Hawkesworth isn’t so positive, saying: “I find the plan disappointing, inadequate and the work proposed does have the feel of a cheap fix..”
Cllr Hawkesworth has suggested to Bradford Council that more consideration is needed on the use of traffic lights; railings to prevent pedestrians walking straight down Brook Street, and a pedestrian crossing to assist passage down the street.
District Councillor Kyle Green commented: "I have been championing improvements at this junction as a vital and life-saving necessity since I was elected and I am pleased that Bradford Council have finally realised this junction must be a road safety priority, albeit belatedly.
While I welcome some aspects of the plans, it is absolutely vital that the taxi rank is moved, barriers are installed and most importantly Ilkley residents are allowed the opportunity to give their views on whether this work will bring about the improvements needed to make it safe for pedestrians to cross."
The Reopening High Streets Safely Fund is a £50m pot of Government funding being shared between Councils across England to support the safe reopening of high streets and commercial areas post COVID-19.