Posts Tagged ‘MetroBus’

Gipsy Patch Lane railway bridge closure set to create traffic hell

Posted on Sunday 2nd June 2019 at 5:40 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of a matrix sign displaying a message about the planned closure of Gipsy Patch Lane for four weeks in June 2019.

Residents across the Stokes are bracing themselves for weeks of severe traffic congestion resulting from the planned closure of a major commuter route through the area.

Gipsy Patch Lane is set to be closed to motorised vehicles at the railway bridge in Little Stoke for four weeks from Monday 3rd June to enable BT to divert its underground cables ahead of the bridge being replaced over a 12-day period spanning Easter 2020.

The new, much wider, concrete bridge will accommodate four lanes of traffic (one bus lane and one general traffic lane in each direction), along with shared-use paths on both sides of the road.

The surface of the highway under the bridge will be lowered by 1.7m to allow taller vehicles, including double-decker buses, to pass through safely.

The June closure comes ahead of a further planned eight-month full road closure at the bridge starting in early 2020.

South Gloucestershire Council (SGC), which is responsible for the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension (CPME) scheme, of which the bridge replacement work forms a major part, originally said that the June closure would apply to “all highway users”. However, it was recently revealed that a route under the bridge for pedestrians and dismounted cyclists will be maintained during the closure.

Signs giving notice of the upcoming June road closure and advising motorists to “seek other routes” were put out in the week commencing 20th May. To avoid confusion, SGC says it will promote just a single signed diversion route, using Bradley Stoke Way and the A38 (see map below). However, it is widely anticipated that motorists with local knowledge and those using satnav equipment will attempt to use other diversion routes, which is likely to lead to significantly increased congestion on some smaller local roads.

More: Diversion map. Businesses open as normal. »

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Council confirms four-week closure of Gipsy Patch Lane from Monday (3rd June)

Posted on Wednesday 29th May 2019 at 10:29 am by SH (Editor)

Photo of Gipsy Patch Lane railway bridge (looking westwards) with superimposed image of a 'Road Closed' sign.

A planned four-week full closure of Gipsy Patch Lane will commence next Monday (3rd June), South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) has confirmed.

The road will be closed to all vehicles at the railway bridge, which is located near the junction with Station Road.

The closure is required to allow BT to divert underground utilities in preparation for construction of the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension (CPME), which is expected to start later this year.

In a change to previously announced plans, the existing footway under the bridge will now be kept open for pedestrians and dismounted cyclists throughout the June closure.

A signed diversion route via Bradley Stoke Way and the A38 will be in place (see map below).

Access to properties and side roads along Gipsy Patch Lane will be maintained and no disruption to the supply of utilities is expected. Businesses and shops along and near Gipsy Patch Lane will be open as normal.

A council spokesperson added that temporary traffic lights may be used at the junction of Gipsy Patch Lane with Station Road “for a period” during the June roadworks.

In addition, ground investigations and surveys will be carried out near the bridge during late May and in June. This will include the removal of some vegetation on the railway embankments but will not require any further road closures.

More: Further eight-month road closure planned for 2020 »

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Bridge closure diversion details to be revealed at public drop-in sessions

Posted on Monday 6th May 2019 at 9:04 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Gipsy Patch Lane railway bridge (looking westwards) with superimposed image of a 'Road Closed' sign.

With the planned four-week full closure of Gipsy Patch Lane during June now less than a month away, South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) says it will soon reveal details of the signed diversion routes that will be in operation during the upcoming work.

Further full and partial closures of Gipsy Patch Lane are planned over the next two years, including a full closure lasting approximately eight months from “early 2020”.

The road closures are needed to allow the existing narrow arch railway bridge to be replaced by a much wider concrete structure.

The work is being carried out as part of the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension (CPME) scheme, which also involves the creation of new bus lanes along parts of Gipsy Patch Lane.

An SGC spokesperson said:

“We understand that this work will have a major impact on traffic in the nearby and wider area. We apologise in advance for this inconvenience and would like to assure everyone that we are doing everything we can to minimise disruption to residents, businesses and road users.”

The council recently conducted an online travel survey aimed at users of Gipsy Patch Lane and it says that the results of this, along with data collected from traffic survey cameras that were temporarily installed at points on the local road network during March, are being used to inform its traffic management planning.

Details of a series of public drop-in information sessions, at which further details of the CPME work and associated traffic diversion routes will be provided, are shown below.

All information displayed at the drop-in events will also be made available on the SGC website at

More: Shuttle bus to be provided for non-motorised road users? »

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£650k scheme to get MetroBus into Parkway

Posted on Sunday 14th April 2019 at 9:42 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Bristol Parkway Station with the MetroBus logo superimposed.

South Gloucestershire Council’s Cabinet has given approval for officers to enter into an agreement with Great Western Railway (GWR) for the implementation of a scheme of improvements at Bristol Parkway that could make it easier for MetroBus services to access the station from early 2020.

The original MetroBus network, as described in the planning application for the North Fringe to Hengrove Package bus rapid transit scheme, included a route between Emersons Green and Bristol Parkway via UWE, but this was silently dropped during the construction phase. It later emerged that this was because MetroBus vehicles could not currently enter and leave the station via the rear (Hunts Ground Road) entrance due to the constrained nature of the site. This was originally thought to be due to the tight turns that the access road makes around the station’s multi-storey car park. However, First Bus boss James Freeman later revealed that the issue is actually one of buses coming in via the rear access not being able to execute a turnaround manoeuvre so that they can go out the same way.

There was never any plan for buses on the Hengrove Park to Cribbs Causeway route (now known as the M1) to make a diversion into and back out of the station. Whether this might change in the future is open to speculation, but to do so would significantly add to M1 journey times which are already bettered by the less frequent T1 service.

A council spokesperson said:

“Bristol Parkway is identified as a key bus/rail interchange for the MetroBus network and local bus services. Officers have been working with GWR to develop a scheme to facilitate enhanced interchange at the station.”

The Journal has learned that a £650k scheme has been designed, which the council will part-fund, with GWR, to the tune of £300k. As well as facilitating in-out bus movements via the Hunts Ground Road entrance, the scheme will provide additional bus stops in the station forecourt and see the renewal of the existing bus shelters.

GWR has advised the council that if a funding package is confirmed by the end of May 2019, then the project could be completed within the 2019/20 financial year, prior to the end of the its current franchise period.

Whether a commercial operator can be found to operate a MetroBus service to the station and when such a service might start remain open questions.

This article originally appeared in the April 2019 issue of the Stoke Gifford Journal magazine (on page 14). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH, to over 5,000 homes in Stoke Gifford, Little Stoke and Harry Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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