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Wednesday, 27 August 2014

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Traffic scheme unveiled as Albion Square set to open

DETAILS have emerged of how traffic will flow through Whitehaven town centre once the Albion Square office blocks open.

by Andrew Clarke

Roadworks will be carried out in three stages, all planned to finish by September to tie in with 1,000 Sellafield workers relocating to the £18 million complex.

The first stage is under way at the junction of Irish Street, Swingpump Lane and Newtown, where a mini-roundabout is being replaced by three-way traffic lights. Road resurfacing, remodelled kerbs and improved road lighting are also planned, and work is expected to be completed in early June.

Work will then start on the Strand Street, East Strand, Market Place junction to replace the mini-roundabout with a “shared priority space”. A spokeswoman for Cumbria County Council, carrying out the work due for completion mid-September, says that drivers “will create their own hierarchy and priority as speeds are expected to be slower.”

She added that there will be safe crossing points for pedestrians. An additional bus lay-by and shelters are also planned, plus resurfacing of the road and pavements and improved street lighting.

The third phase, starting and finishing in June, is an improved traffic island and new footway at Tangier Street/Bransty Row.

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, which is behind Albion Square, says autumn has been earmarked for the first influx of staff. The NDA is funding the roads scheme, and has earmarked an additional £108,000 for future pedestrian/cycle improvements.

Have your say

I am originally from Whitehaven but moved away a number of years ago me and my family are now in Dorset. We are up at Stbees on holiday and today took a drive into Whitehaven today.
Omg what have they done the new buildings for Sellafield are nothing short of awful what a eyesore why on earth were the offices not built out of the town centre say the old Marchon sight that already had car parks for ease of parking etc.
Whitehaven is a beautiful town they should be trying to promote visitors but where will they now park if they come i am still reeling with shock at how ugly it all looks whoever can permission for this wants psychiatric help.
On the parking note again last year we came up in a motorhome we could not find any place in Whitehaven to park so we could look round the shops etc so we just drove on to Workington.

Posted by Andy on 9 April 2014 at 21:53

It's depressing walking around Whitehaven town centre and has been for many years, the last recession that killed off Woolworths and several other shops was the last nail in the coffin-CBC loosing out on Asda after being too greedy over the price of the land.

If I were a café, eatery, or shop other than a charity shop I'd welcome 1000 well paid customers. Based on a normal working year x1000 if each person spends £2 a head a day on a coffee or whatever on average that's £1 million into the local economy.

Conversely the traffic isn't going to be pretty. Allot of people travel from South of Sellafield so may get the train. I've heard only 300 car parking spaces will be available in the multi story so it may encourage people to use public transport, car share etc.

I hope it breaths some much needed life into the town centre, lets face it's depressing, aesthetically a much nicer town centre than Workington yet there's nothing. Give it 12 months and hopefully some chain stores may appear as well as independents. The traffic will have to be the price we pay for a better town centre.

Posted by Andrew on 9 April 2014 at 16:59

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