Published: 06 November 2020
Monmouthshire County Council has confirmed that the decision has been made to not introduce a one-way system to Usk’s town centre. Temporary traffic lights will instead remain as part of temporary measures to enable social distancing while the COVID-19 pandemic continues.
Signage is being installed to remind road users of the 20mph speed limit through Usk and the need to slow down, a key part of the measures that have already improved safety for pedestrians who are out and about in town.
The current traffic lights will be replaced with ‘smart’ lights that can measure the length of traffic queues and adapt their sequencing accordingly to minimise delays. Cameras will also be installed to catch motorists who jump red lights. This will not only be an important safety measure, but should also deter motorists who fail to stop at the red lights. Jumping of red lights endangers pedestrians and other road users and also inconveniences everyone by causing the lights to go into a safety reset mode, turning red in both directions until they are sure the space between the lights is clear. The new CCTV cameras will allow offenders to be prosecuted.
Deputy Leader of Monmouthshire County Council, Councillor Bob Greenland said: “I am pleased to say that we have been working with Usk Town Council to agree the best possible future plan for the town while we are required to enable social distancing to reduce the spread of COVID-19. The one-way system that was considered has now been ruled out and we will move forward with a more effective traffic light system.
“Concerns have been raised about HGVs that have been passing through town despite the 7.5t weight limit. To address this, we will be continuing to monitor the situation and are pleased to confirm that there has been a notable decrease in lorries going through the town,” Councillor Greenland added.
The combination of the widened walkways combined with a lower speed limit has already improved the safety for pedestrians in the town. These temporary measures will remain while the Welsh Government continue to require social distancing as an essential part of the prevention of the spread of COVID-19.