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Traffic calming “cushion” scheme under attack

By Jo Deeks on Thursday, 16th May 2002.

A long-awaited traffic calming scheme at Haverhill has been attacked as a waste of money by a local resident, who says it does not work and makes speeding traffic worse.

Unpopular traffic humps on the Chalkstone estate were criticised for being too high and causing problems for buses and emergency vehicles. They have now been replaced by speed cushions, which will be extended to other roads on the estate.

But Chris Cullum, of Gannet Close, says traffic problems on the estate had already grown because of HGVs and other vehicles avoiding the road works in the centre of Haverhill. Since the humps were replaced, Mr Cullum says traffic is just veering round the new speed cushions and going even faster.

“They just don’t work, people can straddle them and avoid them. The traffic up here has gone from reasonably fast to extremely fast. It is like a racetrack up here.”

“I cannot believe they have spent £40,000 on this, it is a complete waste of money. We could have two policemen standing up here all year for that. It is no improvement whatsoever, it has made matters worse,” Mr Cullum said.

Steve Boor, of St Edmundsbury Borough Council, said the aim of the scheme was to create an average speed of 20mph and similar ones elsewhere had achieved this.

He had no reason to believe that speed had increased because of the scheme, but it would be monitored once it was finished. There would be 20mph signs put up and if speeding was a problem the area would be looked at again.

Patrick Hanlon, St Edmundsbury Borough councillor for the estate, said he had been trying to get rid of the old humps since he was elected. They were much too steep and very unpopular with residents.

“These were a compromise solution so that the buses can get over them more easily as we don’t want to lose our bus route. Anything is better than what we had before.

“I have spoken to the council and they say if people in smaller cars are driving straight through the middle, they are having to slow down to do it.

“They are going to do a speed survey when it is finished and if people are still speeding, perhaps we can have some of the longer humps that there are at the bottom of the estate,” Coun Hanlon said.

Haverhill Weekly News

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