Planning a smoother highway network

Motorists in Harrogate, Knaresborough and Ripon are to be asked to take part in a major survey of traffic patterns as a prelude to easing congestion on the highway network.

Consultants working for North Yorkshire County Council and Harrogate Borough Council are to conduct roadside interviews with drivers during March and April to gather vital information about journey patterns.

The information they collect will be fed into an examination of the causes of traffic congestion, and will help in the process of devising solutions.

“The three communities, and Harrogate in particular, have serious problems with congestion, and we want to be in a position to do something positive about resolving them,” said County Councillor Gareth Dadd, Executive Member for Highways.

“The information on journey patterns that we collect in this survey will be of great importance to our engineers and planners in deciding where to invest money and resources to get the outcome we all want to see – fewer jams, easier movement, more pleasant driving conditions.”

Councillor Michael Harrison, Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning said: “Data on journey patterns is an important factor in planning application decisions and is essential for providing robust evidence for the Local Plan.”

The roadside traffic surveys will begin in the middle of March, and both councils have appealed to motorists to be co-operative when directed by police officers to stop and participate.

Individual surveys do not take long to complete, and while participation is voluntary, the more drivers who help provide information, the more beneficial will be the result. All information is treated in strict confidence.

Each survey site is operated in one direction, on one day only, with each interview lasting no more than three minutes. Every effort will be made to keep any delays to an absolute minimum.