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Jericho neighbours ask for wider pavements as streets get busier
JERICHO residents are calling for action to be taken over a street which they say has become choked with traffic.
Walton Street runs from King-ston Road to Beaumont Street and is home to some of Jericho’s best loved pubs and shops but residents say it has become busier than ever.
Now there have been calls for action to be taken to make the street a more welcoming place for cyclists and walkers.
Paul Hornby, the vice-chairman of the Jericho Community Association, said: “The nature of Walton Street has changed entirely. “Not so many years ago it was just a neighbourhood street but it is becoming not as use- friendly as it once was.
“There is parking on both sides of the street in some places and you need eyes in the back of your head if you’re going to cycle down there. Some people are certainly using it rather than going down St Giles and Woodstock Road.”
Mr Hornby said he would like to see more traffic calming measures along the street in addition to the few speed bumps which are already there.
He also suggested widening the pavements to make the area more “user-friendly”.
Walton Street is home to the Jericho Tavern, the Phoenix Picturehouse and Oxford University Press as well as one side of Oxford University’s Radcliffe Observatory Quarter which is currently being developed.
The problem has become worse, Mr Hornby said, as Jericho has become a more popular area because of its bars and shops and also because drivers are using it as a rat-run.
Instead of going down St Giles and Woodstock Road, some drivers are using Walton Street which runs parallel.
Over the past year there have been four accidents, two of them serious, along the street – all involving cyclists.
City councillor Susanna Pressel, who represents Jericho, said: “People in Jericho don’t tend to use their cars very much. They tend to walk or take the bus and it is a shame that streets are ruled by motor vehicles.
“I do agree that it would be better if there was more shared space and we certainly need wider pavements in Walton Street because a lot of people use them.”
The concept of shared space between cars, cyclists and pedestrians has been used in some of Oxfordshire County Council’s schemes such as the planned redevelopment of Frideswide Square but has proved controversial.
Paul Smith, a spokesman for Oxfordshire County Council, said: “Residents are welcome to contact the council directly to articulate any concerns they may have.”
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