Scrap Filton Avenue bus lane, say transport campaigners
A TRANSPORT group is calling on South Gloucestershire Council to get rid of an unpopular bus lane.
The Transport for Greater Bristol Alliance believes that the Filton Avenue lane causes delays and congestion.
The campaign group believes the council should follow neighbouring Bristol City Council's lead after a stretch of bus lane in Westbury Road, near White Tree roundabout, was removed.
A spokesman for the organisation said: "Removing it would mean that two lanes of traffic could now approach the junction with Station Road, and both motorists and public transport users would benefit. This is because the bus companies would much prefer to take buses off Filton Avenue, and along Nutfield Grove though the Abbey Wood station car park and onto Station Road without using the congested junction, as it makes journey times more reliable."
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The group said a rail and bus interchange at Filton Abbey Wood station would make public transport more attractive to passengers. At the moment only one bus per hour departs from the station car park.
The spokesman added; "All the buses on Filton Avenue pass by 200m away from the car park, but the nearest bus stop for them is nearly 600m from the platforms. There are no houses fronting on to Nutfield Grove, where the buses would run, and the predominantly elderly residents further down Nutfield Grove would have a bus stop close to hand at Abbey Wood, instead of nearly half a mile away.
"This would also be the opportunity to move bus stops from the busy Filton Avenue junction where they present a traffic hazard."
Residents and shopkeepers say the lane is a waste of time and money.
South Gloucestershire Council spokeswoman Sarah Hudspith said the authority planned to look at improving bus access at the station.
"It is an aspiration of South Gloucestershire Council that more buses serve Filton Abbey Wood station in the future and we will be working with the bus operators to identify what measures may be required to allow this to happen," she said. "However, removal of the bus lane on Filton Avenue would not automatically result in buses calling at Filton Abbey Wood as suggested by TfGB. The bus lane on Filton Avenue was implemented as part of the Greater Bristol Bus Network in order to improve the reliability of services. The bus lane is supported by First Group."