Bus lay-by given the go-ahead

TRANSPORT chiefs have approved plans to install a new lay-by at an existing bus stop despite objections from residents.

The lay-by will be built in Dunston Road, Hartlepool, to ease congestion worries after concerns were raised that traffic builds up behind buses as they pick up passengers at the current stop on the road.

Officers at Hartlepool Borough Council say the scheme will improve safety and reduce congestion, especially when pupils leave the nearby High Tunstall College of Science at home time.

The scheme is estimated to cost £50,000 and the central neighbourhood consultative forum has contributed £15,000.

The proposals were approved by Labour councillor Pamela Hargreaves at a meeting of her regeneration and economic development portfolio.

Officer say there will be no increase in the number of buses using the new lay-by, which will have a new paved area.

Plans were approved despite an objection from a nearby resident that it would lead to increased noise and litter problems.

The report added: “The provision of a lay-by will only move the area where passengers wait by about 6ft from the existing location, and also moves the area parallel with the objector’s house, rather than closer to it.

“It is therefore unlikely that the scheme will result in an increase in noise and litter closer to the objector’s home, as has been claimed.”

The objector also raised wider concerns about the lack of children walking to school and said that issue should be addressed by the council.

Transport officers say they have an ongoing programme of Safer Routes to School schemes to encourage walking and cycling to school.