Suffolk County Council needs to look again at the almost finished layout of St Andrew’s Street South in Bury St Edmunds, its leader admitted today.
Mark Bee visited the controversial section of road between King’s Road and Risbygate street, called the ‘ugliest street in Bury’ by arc manager Colin Roberts, at the invitation of St Edmundsbury Borough Councillor Paul Hopfensperger, who said the road was dangerous even after a £220,000 remake.
Cllr Bee said: “The principle of ‘shared space’ roads was that if you remove street furniture you stop it looking like a road and more like a pedestrian area. When you drive into it you think ‘I’m going somewhere different’.
“It will only work if you do it 100 per cent — compromised shared space is an oxymoron.”
Standing at the back of the Post Office he looked towards King’s Road, over the block paved section and said: “Look this way and it looks more like a pedestrian area — look the other way and it looks like a road.
“That junction [Risbygate Street] invites drivers into it.”
Cllr Hopfensperger said: “It’s actually a dangerous situation we’ve got here.”
Cllr Bee added: “Where I’m agreeing with Paul is you either do it of don’t, but as this stands at the moment, it doesn’t do it.
“I’ve got to ask people to look at the whole picture. If you solve the shared space problem, you don’t want to create problems elsewhere.”
Cllr Hopfensperger said the problem was that while Suffolk County Council was the Highways Authority, until last year St Edmundsbury had an agency agreement to look after highways.
Cllr Bee said: “I need to go back and ask questions. It sounds like a project that was started by one group and picked up by another.”