Sunday 15 May 2011

Does extra parking calm traffic? Yes

We're going to be looking at the Clifton "calming traffic through more parking" plans, to show that this isn't really a self-centred proposal by the Clifton Parking Faction (our comrades, the Keep Parking Free team), but instead a dedicated attempt to reduce risk in a busy city.

Here is the Shaldon Road/Muller Road Junction. Our secretly camera-instrumented traffic dodger is not waiting the ASL we paid our tax money for, apparently because "you get run over by buses turning left on the left turn light, or buses turning right"

  • At 0:04 a car parked with its hazard lights on, some L-plate vehicle, we believe.
  • At 0:08 the tax-dodger pulls up to go straight on, even though there are no markings on the road to indicate that this is permitted.
  • At 1:23 in this dull video (and people wonder why we text in our cars at junctions. This is why), a bus turns right.
  • At 1:27, behind the camera, the bus comes to a halt, as it cannot get past the parked car, not with the queue of cars waiting to turn right.
  • At 1:31 someone sounds their horn. We are not sure who. Either its the silver car behind the bus, or a car behind the bicycle complaining that they are in the way.
  • At 1:40 there are now five cars behind the bus, the traffic speed has been reduced to 0 km/h. No pedestrians will get hit by cars now.
  • At 1:46 the green light reaches Shaldon Road, the tax-dodger pedals forward through a junction that is now blocked by stationary cars. Any cars behind them will not be moving, hence their speed is also 0 km/h: again, safety at work.
  • At 1:50 the known subversive weaves their way through the now traffic-calmed junction, so ensuring that if there were any pedestrians in Station Lane, they would not get run over by a speeding cyclist.
There we have it then. A single L-plated car can traffic calm a busy junction, reducing vehicle speeds by 15 km/h, that is, from 15 km/h to 0 km/h.

This shows how the addition of extra parking spaces can calm hazardous junctions, and is not merely an attempt by a group of self-centred Clifton residents to add extra parking for their extra vehicles. Although that is, of course, a side-benefit, one that other traffic calming ideas: bike parking, trees and build-outs don't over, which is why it is the only form of traffic calming that we, the Bristol Traffic team approve of.
Update: added the video

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