Our top 10 solutions for dealing with the swing bridge problem in Warrington

Warrington Guardian: Our top 10 solutions to dealing with the swing bridge problem in Warrington Our top 10 solutions to dealing with the swing bridge problem in Warrington

THE ongoing traffic chaos caused by the opening of the swing bridges has seen more than 400 people sign the Warrington Guardian’s online petition.

Public concern has mounted over the increasing frequency of the opening of the bridges at Latchford, Stockton Heath and Walton, which triggers gridlock in the town.

Motorists and residents have called for action from both Peel Ports and Warrington Borough Council.

The Warrington Guardian has listed its top ten solutions to help alleviate the traffic nightmare, which ensues the opening of the bridges.

What do you think of the solutions? Do you have a better alternative? We want to hear from you.

Email lauren.hirst@nqnw.co.uk.

1. Reduce the opening of the swing bridges between the hours of 7.30am to 9am and 4.30pm to 6.30pm. Warrington Borough Council is currently in talks with Peel Ports to sign a memorandum of understanding, which would limit the number of sailings in peak periods to 100 a year or below. So far, Peel Ports have refused to do this.

2. Provide advanced warnings of planned shipping movements. An early warning system is expected to be launched in partnership with Peel Ports and Warrington Borough Council later this year, which will enable council officials to notify motorists via a website about the openings of the swing bridges.

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It is anticipated that they will be able to give a warning 35 minutes prior to an opening as well as what direction the boats are travelling in.

3. Once the early warning system is launched, social networking sites could be set up to keep motorists up to date on the current status of the bridges. A text messaging service could also be organised where motorists could subscribe to updates at certain times of the day.

4. Modernise the bridge so that it swings faster. This will alleviate the traffic chaos caused by the bridge openings by shortening the times when road traffic is halted.

5. Signs to be displayed at various locations along the roads leading up to the swing bridges, giving motorists information on the status of the bridges and what direction the boats are travelling in.

6. Repeal the 1885 Act of Parliament, which gives Peel Ports the power to open the bridges as its discretion. This would be a costly and lengthy process for the council.

7. High level bridges could be built. This solution is favoured by David Mowat Warrington South MP, who called it the ‘least worst option’ but, with the amount of development that has taken place along the canal, suitable locations are limited.

8. Group boats travelling down the canal together so that the bridges swing less frequently but for a longer period of time during the night.

9. Only allow lower level boats to travel down the canal during rush hour to avoid unnecessary swings.

10. Restrict the time that the bridges can be opened for and order Peel Ports to pay fines if they continue to flout this. This would be difficult to impose due to the 1885 Act of Parliament.

Comments (20)

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8:19am Thu 20 Feb 14

wirematt says...

Here's a solution...deal with it.
Here's a solution...deal with it. wirematt

9:40am Thu 20 Feb 14

ninearches says...

People who know about the bridges to allow extra journey time ? Or is that too easy ?
People who know about the bridges to allow extra journey time ? Or is that too easy ? ninearches

9:56am Thu 20 Feb 14

flashcoffy says...

Great so the WG are now experts in Traffic and Shipping analysis?

Points 2 and 10 are utterly ridiculous. Point 2.Anyone who has been following the Guardians agenda might remember a response from Peel saying they were awaiting the Councils reponse to using Matrix signs. Point 10. What are they "continuing" to flout in a hypothetical suggestion?!

Oh and WG, another top 10?
Great so the WG are now experts in Traffic and Shipping analysis? Points 2 and 10 are utterly ridiculous. Point 2.Anyone who has been following the Guardians agenda might remember a response from Peel saying they were awaiting the Councils reponse to using Matrix signs. Point 10. What are they "continuing" to flout in a hypothetical suggestion?! Oh and WG, another top 10? flashcoffy

10:06am Thu 20 Feb 14

mr ralph says...

Easy solution just turn your engines off when you are waiting please
As someone who lives on kingsway south I find it amazing the amount of people who I presume moan about the price of fuel leave their engines running for up to 15 minutes or race off to go over the cantilever.
Easy solution just turn your engines off when you are waiting please As someone who lives on kingsway south I find it amazing the amount of people who I presume moan about the price of fuel leave their engines running for up to 15 minutes or race off to go over the cantilever. mr ralph

10:19am Thu 20 Feb 14

MikeJT says...

So out of the 10 solutions we have an equal split.......between ...it already happens(or is in the pipline) and it aint gonna happen.

I often criticise politicians for spouting what they think the public wants to hear when the reality is far different. Is WG now run by politicians ?
So out of the 10 solutions we have an equal split.......between ...it already happens(or is in the pipline) and it aint gonna happen. I often criticise politicians for spouting what they think the public wants to hear when the reality is far different. Is WG now run by politicians ? MikeJT

2:26pm Thu 20 Feb 14

Dwencel says...

I fink that idea nr 2 and 3 are the beast.
I fink that idea nr 2 and 3 are the beast. Dwencel

2:57pm Thu 20 Feb 14

fedster says...

9. Only allow lower level boats to travel down the canal during rush hour to avoid unnecessary swings.

a barge just about fits under the swing bridge when its closed
so what do they want peel to do put one container on a barge and send 40 up at once ?

the coastal can carry up to 76 containers that some load
so i wonder if 76 trucks would take less time less fuel and less traffic congestion.

fyi coastal will pass at rush hour this afternoon its due at irlam at 6 30
9. Only allow lower level boats to travel down the canal during rush hour to avoid unnecessary swings. a barge just about fits under the swing bridge when its closed so what do they want peel to do put one container on a barge and send 40 up at once ? the coastal can carry up to 76 containers that some load so i wonder if 76 trucks would take less time less fuel and less traffic congestion. fyi coastal will pass at rush hour this afternoon its due at irlam at 6 30 fedster

3:01pm Thu 20 Feb 14

NoLandfillRemainsAfter2018 says...

The council should have considered this potential issue and share the responsibility after allowing the numerous new housing estates to be developed around the now completely over populated Warrington, the town has seen a massive increase in road usage since the canal was used to it's intended purpose back in the 80's. To have one high level bridge with this high volume of traffic now on Warrington's roads is ludicrous and another bridge should be built. I lived in Warrington in the 70's 80's and 90's and there was never a major issue, people were actually happy the canal was in use as it meant jobs and prosperity. I left warrington in 93 and now I avoid the place purely because of traffic, it's a nightmare and the councils lack of foresight is at fault. Build a new bridge.
As a suggestion couldn't the high level latchford rail bridge be removed and a new road bridge put in its place?
The council should have considered this potential issue and share the responsibility after allowing the numerous new housing estates to be developed around the now completely over populated Warrington, the town has seen a massive increase in road usage since the canal was used to it's intended purpose back in the 80's. To have one high level bridge with this high volume of traffic now on Warrington's roads is ludicrous and another bridge should be built. I lived in Warrington in the 70's 80's and 90's and there was never a major issue, people were actually happy the canal was in use as it meant jobs and prosperity. I left warrington in 93 and now I avoid the place purely because of traffic, it's a nightmare and the councils lack of foresight is at fault. Build a new bridge. As a suggestion couldn't the high level latchford rail bridge be removed and a new road bridge put in its place? NoLandfillRemainsAfter2018

4:40pm Thu 20 Feb 14

GRUMPY PARENT says...

NoLandfillRemainsAft
er2018
wrote:
The council should have considered this potential issue and share the responsibility after allowing the numerous new housing estates to be developed around the now completely over populated Warrington, the town has seen a massive increase in road usage since the canal was used to it's intended purpose back in the 80's. To have one high level bridge with this high volume of traffic now on Warrington's roads is ludicrous and another bridge should be built. I lived in Warrington in the 70's 80's and 90's and there was never a major issue, people were actually happy the canal was in use as it meant jobs and prosperity. I left warrington in 93 and now I avoid the place purely because of traffic, it's a nightmare and the councils lack of foresight is at fault. Build a new bridge.
As a suggestion couldn't the high level latchford rail bridge be removed and a new road bridge put in its place?
The only problem with the high level bridge would be where to put the on and off ramps to the bridge. Plus the cost of re-instating it as usable and who would pay. I also think that the residents who live very close to this bridge would not be very happy for obvious reasons. A sensible suggestion, but I don't think a viable option. In any case this would only solve Latchford's problem and not that of Stockton Heath up to Moore. Of course this is only my opinion.
Still Grumpy
[quote][p][bold]NoLandfillRemainsAft er2018[/bold] wrote: The council should have considered this potential issue and share the responsibility after allowing the numerous new housing estates to be developed around the now completely over populated Warrington, the town has seen a massive increase in road usage since the canal was used to it's intended purpose back in the 80's. To have one high level bridge with this high volume of traffic now on Warrington's roads is ludicrous and another bridge should be built. I lived in Warrington in the 70's 80's and 90's and there was never a major issue, people were actually happy the canal was in use as it meant jobs and prosperity. I left warrington in 93 and now I avoid the place purely because of traffic, it's a nightmare and the councils lack of foresight is at fault. Build a new bridge. As a suggestion couldn't the high level latchford rail bridge be removed and a new road bridge put in its place?[/p][/quote]The only problem with the high level bridge would be where to put the on and off ramps to the bridge. Plus the cost of re-instating it as usable and who would pay. I also think that the residents who live very close to this bridge would not be very happy for obvious reasons. A sensible suggestion, but I don't think a viable option. In any case this would only solve Latchford's problem and not that of Stockton Heath up to Moore. Of course this is only my opinion. Still Grumpy GRUMPY PARENT

7:02pm Thu 20 Feb 14

Southofthecanal says...

We already have a high level bridge which is not being used....it used to carry the railway....could something be done to make it suitable for vehicles?
We already have a high level bridge which is not being used....it used to carry the railway....could something be done to make it suitable for vehicles? Southofthecanal

7:39pm Thu 20 Feb 14

Brick Bazooka says...

"THE ongoing traffic chaos caused by the opening of the swing bridges has seen more than 400 people sign the Warrington Guardian’s online petition."

400! Really? That's 0.02% of the Warrington population. Based on that I think it's safe to say you can stop reporting stories about swing bridges.
"THE ongoing traffic chaos caused by the opening of the swing bridges has seen more than 400 people sign the Warrington Guardian’s online petition." 400! Really? That's 0.02% of the Warrington population. Based on that I think it's safe to say you can stop reporting stories about swing bridges. Brick Bazooka

7:55pm Thu 20 Feb 14

old-codger says...

I have crossed the swing bridge at various times between 5pm and 6pm and have not seen the bridge off at this time for months, Its all panic stations just because people don't or wont allow another fifteen minutes for the journey time, Its the canal, Its been here over a hundred years, Get over it.
I have crossed the swing bridge at various times between 5pm and 6pm and have not seen the bridge off at this time for months, Its all panic stations just because people don't or wont allow another fifteen minutes for the journey time, Its the canal, Its been here over a hundred years, Get over it. old-codger

7:56pm Thu 20 Feb 14

muckerman says...

More whingeing from South Warrington!

I pass twice a day over one of the swing bridges 5 days a week about 7.30 and 17.15.
In 18 years I can only remember ever waiting for a boat to go past about 10 times.
I don't see any changes in that pattern recently.
More whingeing from South Warrington! I pass twice a day over one of the swing bridges 5 days a week about 7.30 and 17.15. In 18 years I can only remember ever waiting for a boat to go past about 10 times. I don't see any changes in that pattern recently. muckerman

1:27am Fri 21 Feb 14

londonwire says...

Brick Bazooka wrote:
"THE ongoing traffic chaos caused by the opening of the swing bridges has seen more than 400 people sign the Warrington Guardian’s online petition."

400! Really? That's 0.02% of the Warrington population. Based on that I think it's safe to say you can stop reporting stories about swing bridges.
It's actually 0.2%, but that doesn't really change your point.
[quote][p][bold]Brick Bazooka[/bold] wrote: "THE ongoing traffic chaos caused by the opening of the swing bridges has seen more than 400 people sign the Warrington Guardian’s online petition." 400! Really? That's 0.02% of the Warrington population. Based on that I think it's safe to say you can stop reporting stories about swing bridges.[/p][/quote]It's actually 0.2%, but that doesn't really change your point. londonwire

10:43am Fri 21 Feb 14

Wire-not-wolves says...

old-codger wrote:
I have crossed the swing bridge at various times between 5pm and 6pm and have not seen the bridge off at this time for months, Its all panic stations just because people don't or wont allow another fifteen minutes for the journey time, Its the canal, Its been here over a hundred years, Get over it.
It's the trying to get over it that causes the problems.
[quote][p][bold]old-codger[/bold] wrote: I have crossed the swing bridge at various times between 5pm and 6pm and have not seen the bridge off at this time for months, Its all panic stations just because people don't or wont allow another fifteen minutes for the journey time, Its the canal, Its been here over a hundred years, Get over it.[/p][/quote]It's the trying to get over it that causes the problems. Wire-not-wolves

4:56pm Fri 21 Feb 14

old-codger says...

Wire-not-wolves wrote:
old-codger wrote:
I have crossed the swing bridge at various times between 5pm and 6pm and have not seen the bridge off at this time for months, Its all panic stations just because people don't or wont allow another fifteen minutes for the journey time, Its the canal, Its been here over a hundred years, Get over it.
It's the trying to get over it that causes the problems.
I have not had any problems getting over the swing bridge, It may take two changes of the traffic lights but I have crossed the canal in less than five minutes.
[quote][p][bold]Wire-not-wolves[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]old-codger[/bold] wrote: I have crossed the swing bridge at various times between 5pm and 6pm and have not seen the bridge off at this time for months, Its all panic stations just because people don't or wont allow another fifteen minutes for the journey time, Its the canal, Its been here over a hundred years, Get over it.[/p][/quote]It's the trying to get over it that causes the problems.[/p][/quote]I have not had any problems getting over the swing bridge, It may take two changes of the traffic lights but I have crossed the canal in less than five minutes. old-codger

9:50am Sat 22 Feb 14

stupot0041 says...

I remember as a kid that this was one of the highlights of the day going into town and the bridge would close. For all the "adults" who've lost their sense of fun, just leave 15 minutes earlier, it's very, very simple.
I remember as a kid that this was one of the highlights of the day going into town and the bridge would close. For all the "adults" who've lost their sense of fun, just leave 15 minutes earlier, it's very, very simple. stupot0041

11:05am Sat 22 Feb 14

mr ralph says...

With regards to the early warning system however it was implemented would it be the best solution for drivers to know that the bridges were to close and when.
If you new a bridge was going to close in 5 minutes would you try and make it there in 4? causing potential accidents.
With regards to the early warning system however it was implemented would it be the best solution for drivers to know that the bridges were to close and when. If you new a bridge was going to close in 5 minutes would you try and make it there in 4? causing potential accidents. mr ralph

8:19am Sun 23 Feb 14

dannyb210 says...

all shipping movements can be seen on marinetraffic.com

I live opposite latchford locks so keep an eye on the canal, i just allow extra time if there is a ship due, its not hard...... my daughter has never been late for school and iv never been late for work.

People should just deal with it and moan about something else......
all shipping movements can be seen on marinetraffic.com I live opposite latchford locks so keep an eye on the canal, i just allow extra time if there is a ship due, its not hard...... my daughter has never been late for school and iv never been late for work. People should just deal with it and moan about something else...... dannyb210

11:05am Tue 25 Feb 14

hayday says...

I think I'm inclined to agree with 98 odd percent which seems not to have a major issue with this once marvel of a construction. So we get held up when the odd tug or vessel comes thru our town. Be proud because I think Peel should be getting more water traffic onto it and hopefully thus creating some much needed work in the area (wasn't there talk of bringing the dock at Moore back into life?) London Road and the Causeway has always been busy at peak times (a filter lane to turn right into Walton Road by the Mulberry Tree would probably help) and I don't see why a tunnel bore couldn't be ruled out in the Walton / Arpley zone..unless you've got vested interest in the hugely popular don't pay if you're Halton, do pay if you're Warrington crossing
I think I'm inclined to agree with 98 odd percent which seems not to have a major issue with this once marvel of a construction. So we get held up when the odd tug or vessel comes thru our town. Be proud because I think Peel should be getting more water traffic onto it and hopefully thus creating some much needed work in the area (wasn't there talk of bringing the dock at Moore back into life?) London Road and the Causeway has always been busy at peak times (a filter lane to turn right into Walton Road by the Mulberry Tree would probably help) and I don't see why a tunnel bore couldn't be ruled out in the Walton / Arpley zone..unless you've got vested interest in the hugely popular don't pay if you're Halton, do pay if you're Warrington crossing hayday

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