A Cardiff councillor says ‘urgent’ measures are needed to stop people driving the wrong way down a one-way road in Roath, close to a primary school.
Labour backbencher Mary McGarry, who represents the Plasnewydd ward on Cardiff City Council, says drivers are putting the safety of local residents, and the children at the nearby St Peter’s Roman Catholic Primary School, at risk.
She says many drivers ignore the no entry signs on Oxford Lane, and use this illegal shortcut to avoid the busy junction of City Road and Newport Road.
In an interview with Get Around Cardiff, which you can listen to below, she said drivers who do this cannot justify their behaviour.
‘People [in the area] are worried about it’, Cllr. McGarry said.
‘They’ve been saying that they’re quite frightened to walk down the road past the end of Oxford Lane in case a car comes out at speed and knocks them over.
‘Particularly if you’re a cyclist and you’re going past, you’re not going to be thinking that a car’s going to come out there.
‘Why should residents have to worry about walking down the road and crossing over there? They shouldn’t. It’s not right’, the councillor, who is a cyclist herself, said.
Oxford Lane is close to St Peter’s Roman Catholic Primary School, and many pupils walk down the road to and from school every day.
‘Urgently something should be done, or else an accident could happen’, Cllr McGarry added.
‘We want to make all the area around the school as safe as possible, or a child could get hurt’.
You can see a map of the area, the illegal shortcut and how close it is to St Peter’s RC Primary School here.
South Wales Police has told this site it has recorded ten cases of drivers misusing Oxford Lane since the start of 2013, and that patrols of the area are continuing.
At the Cardiff City Council meeting on November 21st 2013, Cabinet member for Strategic Planning and Transport, Councillor Graham Hinchey, told members he was planning to put a mobile camera enforcement unit on Oxford Lane to deter motorists from using the road as a shortcut.
He said he hoped this would be in place by July 2014, to allow for a five month Welsh Government legal process.
Councillor McGarry told Get Around Cardiff that a permanent camera on the road would be a more effective way to deter drivers from doing this, and said she would push the council to install one.
‘If you know you’re going to get caught, of course it’s going to be effective’, she said.
As well as calling for a permanent camera to be installed, Cllr McGarry said she believes the council’s proposals to narrow the entrance to the road, and to install speed bumps on Oxford Lane would effectively deter drivers from using it as a shortcut, as it would increase the time it takes to drive down the road.
But she urged that swift action was needed to keep the area safe.
‘I would hope that something would be done by the end of the month’, she said.
Get Around Cardiff has contacted Cllr. Graham Hinchey and Cardiff Council about these plans to stop motorists misusing Oxford Lane, and is awaiting a response.