Chiefswood Road one-way FAQs
Why can’t a segregated path be built just now?
The existing road is not wide enough to accommodate two way traffic as well as a shared multi-use path. When looking for external fundingwe have to be able to demonstrate if there is sufficient demand from pedestrians and cyclists for a path and this proposed trial would allow us to measure this.
What happens at the end of the trial?
The temporary kerbs will be removed and the road will revert back to two-way. During the trial our officers will survey the verge and surrounding land and decide if it will be possible to construct an off-road multi-use path utilising the verge, and if it turns out there is demand for a path, and there is scope to construct one, then funding opportunities will be sought.
I don’t believe the Council will switch the road back to two way at the end of the trial, what guarantees are there?
The trial will end on or before 30 September and no later. The public have raised concerns over the need for Chiefswood Road to be open and two-way during the winter, and due to the temporary nature of the kerbs they would be unlikely to withstand snow ploughs.
How will the Council determine if there is sufficient demand for a path?
We will work with Sustrans on pedestrian and cycle counts as well as an online public surveys as the trial progresses. Frequent updates will be provided to Melrose Community Council during the trial.
Why are you going ahead with this when the recent online survey showed that more Melrose residents didn’t want it than those who did?
The feedback from the recent public survey was devised to provide views to help form decisions made by us. A mix of feedback was received from the consultation. Although more Melrose residents stated they did not want a trial one-way, a high percentage of them said they would still use a path if it was available.
What about emergency vehicles?
Police, fire and ambulance services have all been contacted and are confident that they can cope with the trial.
I am an emergency worker who needs to get to the hospital at short notice when on call, what if I’m delayed?
The one way is intentionally downhill towards the hospital so that emergency vehicles and staff will still be able to get to hospital on the most direct route from the Dingleton side of the town. It will result in an additional 2km on the return journey as part of the trial, but hopefully that will be manageable bearing in mind the benefit to pedestrians and cyclists of the path.
Melrose Town Centre is busy enough and this more traffic will cause more delays, and that means more traffic past two schools, how can this be justified?
Melrose benefits from a by-pass as well as a one-way system, both of which assist in the management of traffic. During especially busy times there can be traffic hold-ups, and these are mainly due to buses stopping to collect passengers and the results of poor parking. Most town centres are busy at peak times, and children crossing roads is part of everyday life. Melrose Primary School has a school crossing patrol and the town is part of the 20mph trial at present.
Dingleton Road is already a nightmare to get up due to parked cars, this will be made even more difficult, are the Council going to stop parking on Dingleton Road?
Although there will be more vehicles heading uphill on Dingleton, and this may cause some short term delays, we have no plans to stop parking on Dingleton Road. However, overall this is only for the duration of the trial, and bearing in mind the need to consider pedestrians and cyclists hopefully drivers will understand the reason for the short delays. With the one way being downhill on Chiefswood Road making it easy for hospital staff and train station users to take the most direct route the additional return journey traffic on Dingleton Road will be dispersed throughout the day.
This is an absolute waste of money, why are the Council going ahead with this when there are potholes to be filled?
As part of the recovery from COVID-19 Sustrans received funding from Transport Scotland to disperse to Councils to see what temporary measures could be introduced to make walking and cycling easier overall. This temporary path is externally funded, and the funding can only be spent encouraging walking and cycling. If we had not successfully bid for this money it would have gone to another Council.