WORK has started on a new £230,000 scheme aimed at tackling a long-standing traffic bottleneck in Hartlepool.
Hartlepool Borough Council is looking to solve the problem of heavy congestion in the town’s Hart Lane, which has been a major headache for motorists.
Transport chiefs at the local authority say the new scheme aims to resolve “safety and congestion problems” which are caused by vehicles parking on both sides of Hart Lane, between Jesmond Road and Sacred Heart RC Primary School.
Block-paved parking areas are being created behind properties on the northern side of Hart Lane, and single yellow lines will be put down on this side of the road to restrict on-street parking.
They hope it will help ensure a smoother flow of traffic and help boost safety.
Officials say the scheme is being funded through the Tees Valley Bus Network Improvement (TVBNI) scheme, which is a five-year programme of improvements to key bus routes across the Tees Valley.
Hart Lane is used by the Stagecoach number 3 bus service, and the company says this section of the road is their biggest problem area in Hartlepool.
That stretch of Hart Lane has also been a bottleneck for general traffic for many years and now the aim is to help put a stop to the problems.
A School Safety Scheme, which involves vehicle-activated signs, a 20mph speed limit and improved road markings, is also proposed as part of the works.
A Hartlepool councillors has welcomed the improvement scheme.
Labour councillor Peter Jackson, who is chairman of Hartlepool Borough Council’s neighbourhood services committee, said: “Most people in Hartlepool would recognise this stretch of Hart Lane as being a long-running problem in terms of congestion.
“There is also a serious safety issue as vehicles travelling in opposite directions try to squeeze past each other due to the presence of parked vehicles on both sides of the road – and the situation is compounded by the presence of the primary school.
“Hopefully, this scheme will lead to big improvements and I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the council officers involved in drawing up this scheme for successfully securing external funding via the TVBNI scheme.”