by Emmanuel Joseph
Barbados is getting another roundabout as Government moves to ease traffic in one of the busiest roadways in St. Michael.
But Minister of Transport and Works John Boyce’s announcement of the plan to construct this rotary solution to reduce worrying vehicular congestion in the Wildey, Collymore Rock, and Bishop’s Court Hill area, was met with immediate skepticism by Cabinet colleague and Member of Parliament for the area, Richard Sealy.
News of this came this evening a town hall meeting convened at the Luther Thorne Primary School to discussed traffic changes in the Clapham area.
Boyce told the audience including residents and business owners that it was Government’s intention to build a large roundabout at Prince Road near the former Gertz Supermarket.
He said this was part of plans to reduce traffic congestion in the Wildey, Collymore Rock, Bishops Court stretch of road.
But when Sealy spoke he wondered whether the roundabout and related measures would work on its own.
The Minister of Tourism said MTW would have to deal with traffic on Collymore Rock and Bishop’s Court Hill first, otherwise the Prince Road Roundabout and other proposals would mean nothing.
This, however, was not the only area of divergence at the meeting, with Sealy telling audience members, who had rejected one of the Clapham changes, the proposed Clapham Traffic Improvement Project, involving the redirection of traffic in the area, would be revised.
The MP was speaking after getting frank feedback during the meeting.
The majority of complaints from the residents included concerns about motorists speeding through Clapham and the large volume of vehicular traffic which traversed the well populated area.
Some residents also rejected the MTW proposal to block off Observatory Road, with a number of them saying it would be a travesty and could cause a traffic hazard.
Responding to a suggestion by a resident to place signs regulating the time which motorists could use Observatory Road, Minister Boyce agreed it was a good idea.
He and his Cabinet colleague Sealy and technical officers assured residents their suggestion would be seriously considered.
Earlier this month MTW announced that with effect from Sunday September 9 the direct access from Observatory Road onto Highway 6 (Wildey Road) would be closed.
“Instead, Observatory Road will now accommodate traffic flow in a two- way direction onto Adams Road which will facilitate exit onto Highway 6.
Removable bollards will be placed at the entrance to Observatory Road in the event of an emergency,” the ministry said.
“The Ministry will also be relocating the pedestrian crossing between Carter’s and the Texaco Service Station further to the east following complaints that motorists did not have enough time to negotiate the Highway6/Highway R Junction and then observe the pedestrian crossing.
“An extra lane will be provided on the Highway 6 leg of the Highway 6/Highway R junction to improve traffic flow.
Over the past two weeks a team from the Ministry has been remarking the junction to upgrade traffic safety,” it added. firstname.lastname@example.org