Southend Conservative Councillors are raising concerns about the current design of the new Kent Elms junction, which was approved during the last Independent/ Labour/ Liberal coalition, raising concerns that the design may increase the number of accidents that occur on the junction.
Shadow Cabinet Member for Transport, Cllr Kevin Buck said,
"I drafted a report in 2016 and stated that whilst the 2 in to 3, back in to 2 may show a nominal benefit of traffic flow at Kent Elms, it has to be taken in greater context of the benefit any such nominal increase in flow gives compared to the social and safety aspects and experience of such design.
"In addition, space constraints mean that this design method cannot function correctly, as there simply is not enough exit plaza space to function as this design intends. The much better and far safer solution is to simply make the new left lanes ‘East & West’ left turn only lanes and allow the centre and right lane to be dedicated to ‘ahead’ only.
"This removes from the junction all of the traffic impediment issues and makes it far safer to traverse and less likely to suffer from RTC’s. Unfortunately, the Independent led coalition administration at the time failed to understand or challenge the officers in the highways department, who decided on an ‘Off The Shelf’ solution at Kent Elms rather than spending time understanding the local issues and working out what was best for this particular junction."